Nearly all of us have been sent to our room at least once in our lives - likely followed by the dreaded words “you’re grounded!” The idea behind the punishment was theoretically intended to teach us a lesson about whatever infraction we committed, and perhaps provide us the opportunity to think about the mistakes we made and how we might behave differently in the future.

The term grounded, in whatever situation it is used, generally conveys the idea of landing or otherwise connecting to the earth, from electricity, to airplanes, to people. As a human being, you might not consider grounding in the “electrical” sense to be an important thing, but humans are comprised not just of matter, but of energy, and this energy or life force can be affected by our choices and by our external environment. The state of our energy also impacts us in physical, mental and emotional ways.

Ever have those days when you’re feeling flighty, unfocused and overly emotional? You may feel disconnected; find yourself thinking too hard and stressing about everything, and you might even be more accident prone, cracking your head on a cabinet door, your shin on the coffee table, or regularly dropping things and bumping into people. While it’s always possible that there are genuine physical issues that are causing the problems, it doesn’t hurt to consider the state you’re in energy-wise. It’s possible that you’ve become “ungrounded”.

To be grounded means that you are fully present, physically, mentally and emotionally. You are connected to the earth, focused, alert and aware. Your body, mind and spirit are all connected and working together. Your head is not “in the clouds”, you are quite literally connected to the earth, the physical.

What kinds of things can cause us to lose our grounding? It can be as simple as every day stresses, such as a busy, stressful day at work; a loud, crowded party; worrying and obsessing over bills, work, family and life. For some people changes in weather or barometric pressure can throw them off. Prolonged cloudy, rainy weather can leave you feeling mopey, drained and dysfunctional. Illnesses from basic colds and allergies to more serious ailments can all unbalance and unground us.

Additionally, people who work psychically or spiritually, as well as those who do healing and counseling in any form can easily become ungrounded if they forget to take steps to keep themselves balanced. It can be easy to get swept up into the spirit of your healing and energy work and forget to keep your feet well connected to the earth. It throws your body and your energy off balance and causes you to deplete your own resources faster.

There are nearly as many ways to get grounded again - and stay grounded - as there are ways to unground. Physically, it can be as simple as walking barefoot, hopping up and down, spending time outside in nature, or hugging a tree. Physical exercise is also a great way to bring yourself back to earth, walking, running, swimming; anything that gets your muscles moving and helps you reconnect to your physical body.

Gardening, taking care of pets, plants and trees, are all great ways to remind you of your connection to the earth and bring your energy back where it should be. You can carry a favorite smooth river stone in your pocket, or find a gemstone that has grounding properties to carry or wear, to aid in keeping you grounded. Grounding gemstones include hematite, obsidian, onyx, tourmaline, agate, jasper, or any stone that just feels earthy and grounding to you.

Visualization can also help you become grounded. Take deep, cleansing breaths, envision your energy pulling into a sphere at your center, and then as you exhale, send it spreading evenly throughout your body, settling in where it belongs,  and connecting down into the earth. You can also visualize yourself as a tree, your body and spine a strong trunk and your feet connecting to the earth and spreading out roots into the ground.

When working psychically or spiritually, or doing healing or counseling, you can also imagine yourself having branches that reach into the sky at the same time that your feet are rooted to the earth. This gives you a connection to your spiritual/universal energy and still helps you remain grounded and balanced.

If you are doing these exercises and still not feeling well, it is a good idea to talk to your medical doctor and get a checkup, so you can rule out any physical causes for the imbalance. If you are having a hard time visualizing these things, or feel like they are not working for you, ask around your area for information on classes on psychic self-awareness, meditation, healing and grounding.

Taking care of both your physical and your energetic self can help you to become more focused and productive. It can leave you feeling happier and more satisfied with your life. Minimally, you might find you end up with a lot less bruises and broken dishes!

Tricia Griffith is an artist, writer and former veterinary assistant living in Maine. She has worked as a psychic and spiritual counselor for more than 20 years and draws much of what she writes about from those experiences. She has written on the arts, virtual worlds, spiritual & metaphysical topics and animal care. She maintains a blog at www.spiritualtea.wordpress.com.

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