Living a Grounded Life and 10 Ways To Balance Your Root Chakra
“Grounding is a process of dynamic contact with the Earth, with its edges, boundaries, and limitations. It allows us to become solidly real - present in the here and now - and dynamically alive with the vitality that comes from the Earth. While mechanically our feet may touch the ground with every step, this contact is empty if we are cut off from the feelings in our legs and feet. Grounding involves opening the lower chakras, merging with gravity, and descending deeply into the vehicle of the body.” - Anodea Judith
If you aren’t familiar with the Chakras system, this is a great place to start. Your Root Chakra is the first of 7 energy centers that run up and down the length of your spine. These energetic centers are part of the ethereal subtle body that cannot physically be seen or felt (but can energetically be seen and felt).
To get into depth about the chakras system as whole will have to be saved for a separate blog post but generally speaking, each chakra corresponds with us on a physical, mental, and energetic level and can be balanced or unbalanced.
The root chakra - known as Muladhara in sanskrit - develops during the first two years of life and is our center of survival and grounding. It is located at the perineum at the base of the spine, and the color red. This chakra is associated with the element earth and all earthly matter like our bodies, health, finances, our safety, and our security. This center is truly the foundation of our lives and is the building block of the entire chakra system.
A balanced Root chakra provides us with recognition of ourselves as strong, secure human of our beings that deserve to live on this earth and in our individual bodies. When balanced we feel grounded, centered, and stable. This chakra is physiologically connected to our sciatic nerve which begins in the lower back and runs down each leg all the way into the feet. It literally connects us the ground beneath us.
“Without grounding, we are unstable; we lose our center, fly off the handle, get swept off our feet, or daydream in a fantasy world. We lose our ability to contain, to have, or to hold. Natural excitement, or charge, becomes dissipated, diluted, or ineffectual. When we lose our ground our attention wanders from the present moment, and we appear to be “not all here”. In this state, we feel powerless and, like a vicious circle, may no longer want to be here.” - Anodea Judith
An unbalanced root chakra can manifest itself in a variety of ways depending on if it is excessive or deficient or even completely closed.
An excessive imbalance can lead to issues such as: anger, rigid boundaries, anxiety, anorexia, flightiness, difficulty manifesting, and material fixation.
A deficient imbalance or closed root chakra can manifest itself in financial instability, trust issues, obesity, depression, heaviness, hoarding, and sluggishness.
Imbalances in the root chakra can stem from our childhood, if we went through any sort of trauma that caused us to feel unsafe and uprooted. They can also come later in life from stress and instability in our job, home, or a relationship.
When we feel grounded we feel calm, present, and safe, and we can think and act with clarity. We feel rooted, connected, and whole. Living a grounded existence is essential to our happiness in life and finding a sense of groundedness is unique to each person. With our own unique pasts, traumas, and successes, we all require our own special blend of practices to help us to create balance in our root and a sense of groundedness in our lives.
10 Tips For Balancing Your Root Chakra
#1 Verbal Affirmations
Pick one of these verbal affirmations to use in meditation or throughout your day. You can write them where you will see them or repeat them out loud or to yourself. Say it, read it, use it until you feel it.
I am at home in my body and on this planet.
I feel safe and secure.
I am Grounded.
I have a right to be here.
I am connected to Mother Earth.
I am always safe at the center of my being.
Each chakra has a Bija (seed sound mantra) whose particular vibration is said to be in harmony with that of the chakra. By chanting it’s seed sound mantra, you can clear blockages and bring the root back into balance.
Seed Sound Mantra: LAM - start by setting a timer for 2 minutes. Close your eyes and take a deep breath in, on your exhale chant LAM and try to feel the vibration clearing and balancing your root. Repeat until your timer goes off. As you become comfortable, set your alarm for 3 minutes, then 4 minutes, and so on.
#3 Grounding Meditation
Find a comfortable seat outside on the ground. This can be at the beach, on the grass, or anywhere where you can connect with the actual earth. Place your palms face down on your thighs and sit up tall. Feel the base of your spine connecting with the earth. Close your eyes and begin to visualize a vibrant red orb spinning around and around at the base of your spine.
Notice the pace at which your root chakra is spinning - does it seem to be spinning slow, fast, or at a nice, moderate pace? Take a moment here to really notice and connect, maybe you even start to feel the energy.
If the pace is slow or fast, try and visualize and feel the pace coming to more of a moderate, balanced speed.
Then, imagine the roots of a tree growing out of the base of your spine. Watch them as they thread into the first layer of earth and then go deeper and deeper into the ground. Watch as they move all the way to the very core of the earth.
Feel that deep connection with the earth. That heaviness, that pull of gravity. You are one with the earth. Take a deep breath in, then a loud open mouth exhale.
When you’re ready, slowly bring your awareness back to your surroundings. Find gratitude for your physical being. Bring your hands to prayer at your heart - Namaste.
#4 Practice Yoga Postures
Practice the following yoga postures for 5-8 breaths each. As you practice each one, feel the sensation of grounding and that material connection to the earth.
Seated Forward Fold
#5 Use Crystals and Essential Oils:
Meditate with or carry around one of the following crystals:
Use the following incense or essential oils while meditating, relaxing, or practicing self-care:
#6 Eat Grounding Foods
For a vegan diet, protein such as tofu or tempeh and earthy, root veggies like beets, carrots, sweet potatoes. Cooking for yourself is a very grounding activity. Make your meal and eat it slowly and mindfully.
#7 Get out in nature!
Get outside. Walk barefoot, dig your toes in the sand, swim in the ocean, lay in grass, go for a hike in nature. Connecting with mother earth is one of the most relaxing and quickest ways to feel grounded.
#8 Practice Self-Care
Take care of your physical being. Get a pedicure or a massage, give yourself a facial, get some extra sleep, or take a nice long bath.
#9 Breathwork - Wave Breath
Pranayama, the 4th limb of yoga, connects the mind to the body. The wave breath is a simple, yet effective pranayama technique to welcome in a sense of calm and groundedness in a short amount of time.
Find a comfortable seat and close your eyes. Relax your shoulders away from your ears and bring your gaze up and in towards your third eye. Take few natural breaths as you feel your sitting bones root into the earth beneath you.
After a few natural breaths, slowly begin to deepen your breath. Let each breath get longer and deeper. On your inhales feel your lower belly fill up, then your upper belly, then your ribs, and then feel your chest completely expand. Then, on your exhales feel the breath first empty from your chest, then your ribs, then your upper belly, and then your lower belly, letting all of the breath completely out. Repeat this wave-like breath 10-20x.
When you are ready, slowly bring your awareness back to the room around you. Bring your palms to your heart. Give thanks and then open your eyes.
Journaling is one of the best ways to discover self-limiting subconscious beliefs, to create goals, and to connect with yourself. Use the following journaling questions to create awareness of any imbalances in your root chakra and to create a game plan to bring it into balance.
What currently, or in the past, has caused you to feel uprooted or unsafe?
Do you think that your root chakra is balanced or unbalanced? Why?
What activities help you to feel the most grounded? How can you incorporate this activities into your life more often?
What do you love about your physical existence? Express gratitude.