Grounding exercises for stress, anxiety and fatigue

When we talk about grounding, sometimes we mean different things. But regardless of the exact meaning, the benefits of grounding for chronic fatigue and other chronic issues have been recognised by many researchers and patients.

What do we mean when we say ‘grounding’?

According to one definition, grounding, also called ‘earthing’, refers to direct skin contact with the surface of the Earth, such as with bare feet or hands, or with various grounding systems, which helps to reduce oxidative stress levels (high both in people with chronic fatigue syndrome and fibromyalgia) and inflammation.

Walking barefoot on the ground is something you can do mostly when the weather is warm enough, and if you live in a big city, it may not be that easy to find a place where you can have direct contact with the ground. The health benefits of ‘earthing’, however, as noted by a number of researches, have been remarkable when it comes to treating chronic conditions. For more information, check The Earthing Movie – a fascinating documentary on grounding/ earthing and the science behind it.

Another definition suggests that “grounding is the act of connecting more deeply and completely to the body, strengthening the feeling of being inside the body and connected to the ground or earth. Many grounding exercises help deepen our connection to anything that is supporting the weight of the body. Other grounding exercises help deepen our connection to our 5 senses, using them to connect us with our body in general.” [1]

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Breathe! to calm down – breathing exercises for shallow breathing

Breathing exercises to stop shallow breathing for chronic fatigue, adrenal fatigue and burnout

Let’s talk about breathing. We never had to learn how to breathe. We always knew exactly how to do it from the very moment we were born and never had to question it. Until we grew up. We often hear the reminders from doctors, movement coaches, meditation facilitators: “Breathe deeply”, “Don’t forget to breathe”, “Don’t hold your breath”.

What happened to our breathing pattern?

As a reaction to our environment and daily stress, we develop something called shallow or chest breathing. During shallow breathing, we draw a minimum amount of air into the lungs through the chest without fully engaging the diaphragm. This type of breathing is very common in everyone who is under pressure or stress, but it can develop into a habit that leads to further tension and anxiety creating a vicious circle when our sympathetic nervous system is aroused and the ‘fight or flight’ response is activated.

In people with adrenal fatigue and chronic fatigue syndrome, symptoms, such as lack of energy, mental fog, dizziness, irritability and stiffened muscles are closely linked to shallow breathing (you can read more about it here).

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Jin Shin Jyutsu self-soothing exercise for stress, anxiety and fatigue

Those of us who have (or had) adrenal or chronic fatigue, or have experienced a burnout, know it too well that even when we rest, our mind rarely does. When our thoughts are racing and the inner dialogue never seems to stop, the body is almost buzzing from the inside. There are many practices and meditations that help you quieten your mind down and ease the emotional arousal, but I’d like to share this particular exercise that works for me like magic.

The exercise I’m about to share was described in Peter A. Levine’s book “In an Unspoken Voice” by (which I mentioned in the previous post), and it is taken from a system of energy flows called Jin Shin Jyutsu.

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