I'm sure many of you reading this have heard of the term grounding before because it's a part of so many spiritual traditions in one way or another.
There's also the practice of grounding physically, which is commonly practiced by walking outside barefoot and connecting to the energies of the earth, or eating grounding foods, such as root vegetables (foods that grow in the soil).
All that said, I want to discuss grounding, the energetic tool. Grounding is the practice of creating a grounding cord, from the center of your head, in your third eye (sixth chakra); this cord connects from your first chakra (root chakra) to the earth, and is able to remove what is not you or energy that you no longer need from your body, chakras, and aura.
It's a relatively simple tool, but it can have a huge impact on your well being and your daily life.
Why is it so important to ground? Think of it this way: In our physical bodies, we have essential practices and bodily processes that eliminate what we no longer need from our physical body. They're non-negotiable. For instance, when you take a shower, you're eliminating any physical debris from the exterior of your body. Similarly, when you go to the bathroom, you're eliminating what you don't need from the interior of your physical body. So I'd like you to think of grounding in this way, as a metaphysical parallel - especially if you are familiar with grounding but have a hard time being consistent with your practice - think of it as essential energetic hygiene.
Any energy that isn't ours, or excess energy that we might hold within our energy body needs to be discharged and released on a regular basis. If it hangs out there for too long, we run the risk of beginning to think that it's really ours when in fact it isn't.
When we have other people's energy and information in our field, it can be kind of shocking to us and uncomfortable when we get hit with it initially. But as time persists, if we don't clear their energy from our field (ie our body, chakras and aura), we're going to begin to think that it's ours. We're just going to think that feeling uncomfortable or feeling stagnant is the "norm" for us.
Unfortunately this happens all too often to so many of us; I know I've gone through so much of my life without this tool, and I really wish I knew about it sooner, to be quite honest!
Here's a story about grounding (or lack thereof!) from my life as a professional musician - maybe some of you can relate to what happened here:
I showed up to rehearsal with a bunch of people that I have never worked with before. I'm really excited to play. I sit down, and we begin rehearsing; everything's going well. However, as time persists, I started to feel really nervous and uncomfortable - that feeling of being out of focus, destabilized, and nervous. I just couldn't figure out why, and just dealt with the feelings as best I could. It wasn't like me to be nervous and out of focus in rehearsals, I'd been doing this work for several decades!
At a break in the rehearsal, the person next to me leans over and says, "I'm so sorry. I just don't feel like myself today. I'm just really nervous and unfocused." Aha! In that moment, when they spoke to me, I realized what had been happening: I was picking up all of their nervous, unfocused energy and thinking that it was mine. At the time I didn't have any effective tools to get rid of it. Just the understanding of what had happened energetically, which did help to alleviate some of the feelings. I wish that I knew about grounding at that time - I would have been able to quickly and effectively deal with this other person's energy that they were unknowingly sending my way!
I'm sure you, too, have similar stories - times when you felt strong feelings, energies that seemingly came forward "out of nowhere", that are very real and tangible but also not yours!
So we know there is a tool to help us - grounding - how often should we use this tool?
That is a question that doesn't have a concrete answer. I always recommend grounding yourself daily - in the morning, or in the evening, whatever time works best for you. There's no one time of day where grounding must take place.
It's always a good idea throughout the day to check up on your grounding cord - especially if you've just spent time around people or places that have intense energies. Energy tools can incur wear and tear, just like physical ones! As needed, as you notice, you can create a new grounding cord, from anywhere that you are.
If you'd like to experience the process of grounding in meditation, check out my free grounding meditation that you can stream or download.
and if you'd like to learn even more about grounding, and practice using this tool in a workshop environment, check out Grounding & Golden Suns.