In this video Counselor Emily explains a simple tool to help you practice mental wellness by grounding yourself. This can help lower anxiety and increase a sense of calm. A transcript of this video is available below.
Hi, my name’s Emily and I’m with Garrett Counseling. I wanted to talk about grounding in this video. So what that means is grounding is about bringing yourself back to your body and back to yourself in the present moment. A lot of times when we start feeling overwhelmed or anxious, or sad, or angry, we are not really in our body, right? We’re in our heads, we’re disconnected. And we’re not able to think rationally, especially for children who don’t even really have the ability to think rationally quite yet at this age.
So grounding is one of those techniques that kind of help bring you back, so that way we can kind of take a pause and then respond to the situation, rather than just react out of emotions. So my favorite grounding technique, because it’s pretty easy for me to remember is the five senses. So you start with naming five things you can see. So right now, I can tell you that I see the couch that I’m sitting on. I see my chair, I see my computer, I see my doll house, and I see my tissue box. So that’s five things I can see.
Next is four things you can feel. So four things I can feel are I feel the pressure of me sitting on the couch. I can feel my feet in my shoes. I can feel how soft my pants are. And I can feel my watch on my wrist. So that’s four things I can feel.
So next is three things I can hear. So well, I can hear myself talking for one. I can hear my sound machine that’s over in the corner. And sometimes it’s kind of hard to find things that you can hear, but I can also hear maybe people out in the hallway talking, or if you’re with another person you can hear them talking, the air conditioning. All of those kinds of things that you can hear. So that’s three things you can hear.
And then next is two things you can smell. So this can be one of, kind of hard, especially if there’s not a lot of smells happening. So right now I can kind of smell the air of the room, and I can still kind of smell my shampoo in my hair. Other things, maybe if you’re in a lunchroom, you can smell all the different foods that are around you. Or if you’re outside, can you smell flowers? Maybe you have to go to something to smell something. And if you can’t name something, that’s okay, because you’re still in the act of trying to really connect with your senses in that moment. So it’s okay if you can only name one thing that you can smell. So two things you can smell.
And the last, because it’s kind of the hardest one to do in the moment, is one thing you can taste. So maybe right now I can still kind of taste my breakfast, because I ate my breakfast not too long ago. So maybe if you’ve just eaten, you can taste that. Or if you’re chewing gum, you can taste that. So you may not have something you can taste or maybe if you’re like, “Oh, well let me just get a snack really quick.” And then I can see like, “Okay, I’m tasting the snack that I’m eating.” So it’s one thing you can taste.
So we start with the easiest sense, right? Five things you can see, because usually you can see a lot of things. Four things that you can feel, because you can touch lots of different things around you. Three things, you can hear, two things you can smell, and one thing you can taste. And it’s okay if you can’t hit that many things. It’s really just important that you are trying to notice what’s going on in your senses. So really what that is it brings you back from inside your head, thinking, going through all these things, to what’s actually happening in the present moment. And that helps you be able to take that moment of pause so you can think, breathe. Always take deep breaths while you’re doing this. And that can even be part of it. Name five things you can see, okay, take a deep breath in, out and then you will do that between each of those.
So that’s one of my favorite grounding techniques. There are many out there feel free to look some more up, but that’s just a little tip and trick to help get you back to the present moment. Thanks.