On a recent trip to the beach I was reminded again why I am such an advocate for the practice of earthing. Earthing is the act of coming into contact with the earth without wearing shoes in order to release negative energy. With the advent of rubber or plastic soled shoes many of us have lost the benefit of being “grounded.” Within a half an hour of being barefoot on the shore I felt like a new person.
There are studies that report the neuromodulative health benefits of earthing, from positive effects on blood viscosity and oxygenation to lowering of cortisol levels. In our world of stress and anxiety, we have lost touch with many practices that could help our bodies organically self correct, and I believe earthing is one of those.
When a client comes into my practice complaining of symptoms of anxiety, I take a thorough history, paying special attention to what that client does to “recharge their batteries.” One of the first recommendations I make is to get out in the sunlight for twenty minutes a day (for the benefits of vitamin D and the effects on neurotransmitters and hormones such as melatonin). This practice alone can cause wonderful benefits on mood regulation and sleep. The addition of being barefoot during this process seems to really augment the benefits for anxiety. I direct them to visualize the anxious feelings being absorbed by the earth and dissipating from their bodies. I have had clients report a dramatic reduction in anxiety just from this simple intervention.
Anxiety can be seen as anxious energy flowing through our bodies, and it is insidious in its effects on our health, our relationships, our productivity and our spirits. The long term effects of unaddressed anxiety can be debilitating. Anxiety is considered a problem when symptoms interfere with a person’s ability to sleep or otherwise function. Men and women can manifest the symptoms differently. Teenagers are particularly susceptible to symptoms of irritability produced by anxiety. Physical symptoms are usually related to the heart, lungs, nervous and gastrointestinal systems. Left untreated anxiety can take its toll on our bodies, and our quality of life.
In our rat race culture we must take the time to care for our bodies, our minds and our spirits if we are to experience life in a meaningful manner. Running on empty trying to function is no way to live. If we want to have the levels of productivity that our lifestyles demand we must invest time in maintaining our mental and physical health. If you are unable to address your anxiety symptoms alone, there is nothing wrong with reaching out for help. Consider it an investment in obtaining the level of functionality you desire. More than that, consider that you function in this busy lifestyle in an attempt to create a rich life in which you can thrive. If you are not thriving, something is not working. Please take steps today to achieve a life that works. Everything that you do depends on it!
Please see my website for resources on dealing with anxiety and obtaining support from me if you need it. Also see the website of my practice, TRU Integrative Health and Wellness for massage, meditation groups, yoga, and other opportunities to care for yourself. You are worth it!