Ever had one of those moments when a stressful thought creeps into your mind and suddenly you can’t think of anything else?
For some, anxiety is fleeting and part of everyday life.
But for those with an anxiety disorder, persistent feelings of fear, dread or uneasiness about something in the future can be debilitating.
“Grounding” is a mindfulness technique that could quickly recentre your thoughts when you feel anxious.
These simple exercises can remind you that “I’m right here, right now. I am safe”, said Cooper University Health Care psychological services and behavioural medicine director Kelly Gilrain.
They’re not intended to replace professional help from a therapist, but grounding exercises can be useful in a pinch.
This one, which is called the “5-4-3-2-1 strategy”, relies on the five senses.
- Five: Identify five things you can see – anything around you.
- Four: Focus on four things you can feel, such as your soft sweater or a hard table.
- Three: Think about three things you can hear, e.g. traffic, office chatter, a noisy heater, etc.
- Two: What are two things you can smell?
- One: Finally, focus on one thing that you can taste. – By Abraham Gutman/The Philadelphia Inquirer/Tribune News Service