Grounding skills are used to help you connect to the present moment and are very important skills that help regulate intense emotions. Grounding skills help bring down the intensity of emotions when you’re feeling too much (e.g., very high anxiety, intense anger, impulsive urges) and will help you be more present when you’re feeling too little (e.g., numbness).
It is often difficult to remember what coping strategies to use in moments when you’re feeling overwhelmed. This is why creating a coping toolbox can be helpful. This is simply a container that contains reminders and items needed to help you cope in the moment. You may enjoy being creative with this process and create a container out of materials that are soothing, aesthetically pleasing, and/or meaningful to you.
Part 1 of this series is about incorporating physical grounding strategies – your breath and your five senses – in your coping repertoire. You can begin to practice these immediately and place reminders in your coping toolbox for future use.
As you read through each of these strategies, think about what reminder or item you might place in your coping toolbox that will be ready when you need it.
Place your feet firmly on the ground, align your spine, and breath. Inhale slowly for 4 counts, pause for 2 counts, exhale slowly for 4 counts, pause for two counts and repeat 10 times.
UCLA Mindful Awareness Research Centre (Online streaming via a computer)
Stop, Breath, and Think (App can be downloaded to your phone)
Calm (App can be downloaded to your phone)
Mindfulness in Medicine (App can be downloaded to your phone)
Know anyone that might benefit from learning grounding skills to regulate their feelings? Share these tips with friends and family who you think might benefit from them. Hold each other accountable to create a coping toolbox and to practice. Discuss what worked and what didn’t. If you need additional support and feel ready to pursue the possibility of therapy, Contact Dr. Dina Buttu – You don’t have to do this alone.
Private and Secure Online Therapy Sessions Available