Big changes in life cause imbalances in the Root chakra
Anyone experiencing big changes in their lives right now? Yeah, we are all feeling the effects of the Covid19 pandemic. This post is about ways to feel more grounded and connected in a time when things seem out of control and uncertain.
The first chakra, the Muladhara (or root) is associated with issues of grounding, survival, stability, and self-sufficiency. When this chakra is open and balanced, we feel a sense of belonging and security. We deserve to be here and to be happy.
Experiencing big changes in our lives makes us feel ungrounded and unstable. Moving, divorce, death, and yes, pandemic—any of these can knock us off balance and leave us questioning our place. Even happy events like marriage and the birth of a child can do this.
The root chakra is associated with our basic, primal instincts and our survival. In terms of our five senses, this chakra associates with the sense of smell, because smell helps most with our survival. Think about how you might sniff food in order to check that it is safe to eat, or even when you notice that a situation doesn’t “smell right.”
The root chakra is associated with the element of earth, and by now you can probably guess why—because it is all about grounding and stability.
Physically this chakra includes the legs and feet. When you think about your survival and stability, that means standing on your own two feet, right? Think about a time when you had a physical problem with your legs and feet. Sprained ankle? Knee pain? Plantar fasciitis? These are all related to issues with the root chakra.
So what do you do with the information? How can you heal and rebalance the root chakra? Here are some suggestions. See what works for you.
Acknowledge your feelings. Things suck right now, and it feels awful. We are grieving, we are angry, we are a thousand different emotions. Yet, if we can sit and breathe and be with our emotions, often this can help ground us again. Brené Brown calls it “embracing the suck.” As in, the situation sucks, but if we stay with it and allow ourselves to be fully present, then the energy can flow, the emotion passes through us, and new insights come in.
Connect to the earth. Any time spent outdoors in nature is good for rebalancing the body’s energy. If possible, try walking barefoot, and be fully present with those sensations. Meditate on your connection to the earth. Think about drawing the earth’s energy up from your feet and legs and into your body.
Practice yoga asana. Most of the standing poses in yoga can help you feel grounded, such as Mountain, Warrior, Pyramid, Lunge, Triangle, Angle, Chair, and balancing poses like Tree. Focus on the feeling of connection to the earth. Press down through your feet as you practice and notice how that can make you feel both firmly attached and lighter. *Even if you don’t usually practice yoga, you can practice pressing down through your feet.
Meditate. Set a timer for at least two minutes. (Most of us can successfully meditate for two minutes, but if you can go for 10 or 20 minutes or longer, go for it.) Breathe deeply. For a mantra, use the affirmation for the root chakra: I am stable. You can also chant the bija mantra (or seed mantra) for the root chakra, which is Lam.
Think of three things you are grateful for. It is easy to lose sight of the small blessings around us, so where ever you are right now, think of three things. They don’t have to be huge. Here are mine (when I’m writing this): I’m thankful for a good cup of coffee. I’m thankful for the internet, so I can write this and connect with people. I am thankful that my husband has already decided what we’re having for dinner.
See, they don’t have to be huge. Just three modest things that you are sincerely thankful for. This practice is to remind you that all is not lost — there is beauty in the world, and kindness, and love.
Listen to Brené Brown’s podcast on comparative suffering. I know, I’m referencing her again, but this podcast has helped me so much. I am recommending it to everyone. In short, she says that there is no comparative suffering. Whatever you are feeling is what you are feeling, and that’s okay. If I start thinking thoughts like this: I’m so sad that my daughter’s graduation got cancelled, but who am I to feel sad about that when others have lost their jobs and their income?
Brené says that type of thinking leads to guilt and shame. And then we push down our own honest feelings of grief, instead of processing them. And that’s not good. You have a right to grieve for whatever you have lost, and there is no competition.
I hope you find these suggestions helpful. Leave me a note in the comments section, and stay safe.