April is anxiety awareness month.
During this episode, we will explore the physiology of anxiety, and what’s happening in the body when anxiety is occurring. Anxiety is not all in your head. Anxiety, particularly, anxiety attacks, are a whole-body reaction to stress that involve the hypothalamus, pituitary gland, and adrenal glands.
We will also practice 2 grounding exercises during this episode. These grounding exercises are from my e book 9 Ways to Ground Your Energy.
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Welcome back to the art of healing podcast. This is Charlyce thank you for joining me. We are going to continue. To the second installment of grounding your energy. Last week's episode, we did three short exercises. That we can use to ground our energy. And these are coming from my ebook nine ways to ground your energy. So we're going to continue on with three more ways to ground your energy very easily. There is an ebook version of this podcast. The last in next weeks, that is free to download both through my website. And I'll also put in the show notes called nine ways to ground your energy. It's a short ebook. That is going to be a visual way to go through these. But during this podcast episode, we'll go through these together. So how you choose to do these? It depends if you want to do them as you listen right now for the exercises we're doing. Today these will best be done when you're seated. Last weeks were easily done standing or walking, but these will best be done. If you're seated in a comfortable position, you might want to download and listen later. You can also listen now, download the ebook and use that to guide you to try these later on. And You can also just do them right along right now if you're ready. So we'll let's talk a little bit about grounding and anxiety, and then we'll get started on these short exercises. So last week. We talked a little bit about the general description of what. Grounding is. And you kind of general, just short description is getting out of your head and getting into your body. Which is easy enough. But why is it when we say get out of your head what's happening on the physiology side? So anxiety. And we talked about this a little bit before, can be a brief experience. It can be an emotion, it could be a persistent condition that leads to a medical diagnosis. But for all of those. What's happening inside your body. Is a complex dance that I'm going to overly simplify. Of course, it's not nearly the simple in, in, in real time, but we're going to overly simplify what happens at the point that we're filling anxiety. So. Your brain and as humans, we got big giant brains. Your spinal cord. Are both working with your, what I call your body's operating system. One of them, your autonomic nervous system. And it is with your brain, your spinal cord, your, the Vegas nerve. On the communication link between all of the glands in your body. So your brain carries the two master glands that can control. With the other glands do is so though it's the hypothalamus and pituitary gland in the brain. And then. In the body, the thyroid gland, thymus gland in the chest, the adrenal glands and the belly. The ovaries in the pelvis of women and the testicles in men. Pelvic kind of out outside of pelvic org organs. So there's a constant communication between all those organs and your brain and with each other. When anxiety is happening a little too much or becoming constant. Basically the brain and parts of the brain that are mostly involved in executive decision-making. Are overtaking the parts of the brain that control organ function. Baseline heart rate, baseline breathing. In baseline production of hormones that govern your digestion and reproductive activity and body temperature. The executive part of the brain is sending a constant stress signal that hits the lower brain, which will then communicate through the Vegas nerve. To the rest of the body that something bad is going to happen. So these, the glans and lower part of the body then correspond the only signals that they can interpret is stress, something bad, stress, something bad is coming. Particularly adrenal glands are getting that and they have a. Cool job that they make a large amount of stress hormones. Adrenaline type hormones. And when they're getting that signal enough, they will finally release a whole bunch of adrenaline. And that's what we feel. Our heart starts to race. We sweat our eyes dilate. As you adrenaline works, it pulls blood away from the digestive organs out into the peripheral. So you get a tummy ache or your digestion stops, or you get constipated or you get diarrhea. If it's really bad, you might throw up. And that's an exchange so that your limbs can get plenty of blood flow in anticipation of something happening, like a fight or a run or something like that. So when we're grounding, what we're trying to do physiologically is get the frontal lobes, the executive part of the brain, not to be so active. We need them to be active. We need that decision making and planning part of our brain, but we don't need so much. So. As we're grounding. It's our short and easy way of trying to pull some of that electric electrical activity out of that part of their brain. We focus it down into the body and us as humans, when our focus goes into our body, we will just naturally begin to relax. So that's what we do and where we're grounding. So with these exercises, we'll test this out a little bit more. These will be. More in seated position, but let's go ahead and get started. This first exercise is hands on the lower belly. So. To do this one, if you want to be seated in a chair, or if you are. A little bit more ready and you're maybe seated cross-legged on the floor. This one you can also do if you're laying down. You'll just place your hands across your lower belly, wherever it feels. Con. Durable in natural. You decide what feels the most comforting to you. And once your hands are there. You want to get into a good alignment in your seating. So you might want to rock your body back and forth until your hips feel. Nice and settled in neutral. And your chest cavity, you might want to practice sort of little seated cat and cow until you get to more of a neutral place there. Where you can get your spine long. But comfortable, all that. You can just sit and breathe easily. And once you're feeling nice and aligned and your hands feel nice and comfortable. You can just start to take. Deep breaths. As we're settling into this, you might want to do just three cleansing breaths, just. That just kind of, you know, clear out the old stale stuff. And then you can take. A longer, more deliberate, deep breath. And as you're taking that inhalation in now, you can bring your focus to your hands that are resting on your belly. And as you do this, just simply observe your hands as they move outward. And then when that breath feels complete, you exhale. And just notice how your hands. Move inward. And then over the next couple of minutes. Just long, deep inhalations. Keeping your attention on the hands. So it might be nice to focus on. How your hands actually touch your belly. And then as you exhale. How your hands fall still resting on the belly. So. As you're experimenting with that hands on the belly and these long breaths. This is a short meditation. I took from my book 21 day meditation journey. And the idea is at we're breathing. We're focusing on that lower belly. We're actually focusing on the sacral chakra. And all we're doing is just letting the brain slow down and just simply experience that part of the body. Without judgment. So that's where our bladders are. That's where our reproductive organs are. That's where our lower digestive tract is. And as we take these long, deep breaths and we fill our hands rise, we're just simply being with that part of our body. We're not asking anything of it. We're not judging it. But the nice thing when we do this is our attention comes out of this overactive brain. And then into the body. So if you'd like to practice that for another. Maybe minute or so. And as you continue, you might notice your breaths get longer and deeper. And. You may notice that. Not as many thoughts or they may not be coming as quickly. And it's not unusual to my. To feel some warmth. In your pelvis. It may be warmth around your bottom area. And if you do fill that, just sit with that. And you may have even closed your eyes. And at this point, We can go ahead and conclude, or if you're, you're in a point where you're really enjoying that you can pause and stay with that breath with your hands on the lower belly form for several minutes. So now that we've had our hands on our bellies and we've had a little moment to. To be in our lower body use. We'll practice an iteration of that, which is a yoga pose. One of the simplest, which is easy seated pose. So just like we practice in the last one. I would say probably being seated. So if you're seated in a chair, If you can adjust yourself so that your feet can be firmly planted on the floor. If there's a reason that your chair doesn't allow for that, there may be an adjustment, like something behind your back. This could show up. Or if you might want to improvise with something you can put underneath your feet, yoga blocks or a book or something similar. And then you can't opt to support your back if in your chair. If you've decided to sit on the floor that would be sitting cross legged. And typically it's usually better. If you can raise your behind. So sitting on a cushion or blankets or a pillow. And crossing the legs if it's comfortable, but you don't have to cross them tightly. You don't have to be in a full Lotus pose. Just something that sort of brings your legs inward. And in the easy seated pose, you find that same nice alignment in your spine. So you might have to. Our cheer back forward a little and open up your chest and then do the opposite where you scrunch everything down. You purposely slouch. And then when you find a good place that you're right in the middle and it feels good. You actually risk there. You can place your hands on your lap. If you want to play, I see your hands upward in use this time. To get in touch with any higher source knowledge, Oracle God prayer. Then you can, or if you want to place your hands Palm down on your lap and that's to help to focus your energy back into that grounding space and into your lower body. And from there you just simply take. Deep breaths in and fill the belly rise and the chest expand. And then simply release the breath. And so if you want to stay there for a minute in this easy seated pose, So, if you had closed your eyes or settled in, you might want to go ahead and open your eyes. And I would invite you actually to stay right where you are to try out this third exercise. So far, our third exercise. I would stay. Seated in whatever position you've chosen, especially if you're comfortable. In, what you'll do is take your. First and second finger or you're pointing finger, your middle finger. And you're going to place him on the back of your head. And you want to find a spot that's on both sides. Sort of find your ears, then work your way. Towards the center. And a spot that's right in between. The midline of your school. And your ears. And then you want to find a place where it's the transition between like the bony part and where it's muscle. And if it's Tinder been moved down or move up and move out to the side. But once you find a place that feels pretty good. You're going to do a little acupressure, so you'll just gently. Massage with very light pressure, you can do circles and you can go. Counterclockwise or clockwise or rotate. You can choose to hold steady pressure, but I would keep it light. But what we're doing is just treating some of our acupressure points, just very lightly. And we're using this as a grounding. So as you do that, you can take those big breaths that she'd practice in easy Cedar pose. And as you're exploring this area, feel free to move your fingers down up more to the side more. If you're someone that has migraines, you may become sensitive, there might be a place that even sort of triggers those. And you can just gently with very light pressure just to massage those while you take deep breaths in and out. And then if it's comfortable, you can move those two fingers. To your shoulder area. So. The meaty part, which is the trapezius. So in between the tips of your shoulders and your neck, And you can gently massage those in the same fashion, like circular, maybe just general pressure or just in and out. But what we're doing is exploring some of our energy points using acupressure. And just releasing some of that muscle tension is a great way to ground our energy. So after those acupressure points, feel free to do some light stretches. If you need to in your neck and maybe rolling the shoulders a little bit, just to release any tension. So hopefully this experiencial podcast has helped you feel more grounded. And when we get back together next week, we'll have a few more exercises for my ebook. Nine ways to ground your energy. As you were listening. If you wanted your copy download, it's totally free. I'll put the link in the show notes. And next week we'll get back together. We'll practice a few more. And then we'll end the month a little differently than we normally do we're just going to change up things a little bit so we'll we'll do that a little bit later in a few more weeks okay thank you so much bye-bye