Grounding: How to Reconnect With the Earth

We live on a beautiful blue planet often described as the living earthIts oscillating and rotating center of gravity creates a powerful electromagnetic energy field. Throughout human history, this energy, or chi, of the earth has been regarded as both sacred and special for its healing abilities. Now, scientists and healing practitioners are beginning to study how the earth’s energy impacts our immune system and resilience to disease through a practice known as grounding.

The Practice of Reconnecting to Earth

Grounding, or earthing, refers to the therapeutic technique of connecting to the earth’s energy and electric charges through direct skin contact. It’s actually something that we have all done before, most likely when we were little children. Here are some ways to get started:

Best Foot Forward: The simplest way to practice grounding techniques is to kick off our shoes, step outside (in a safe space free from sharp debris) and allow the soles of our feet to touch the dirt or grass. While this may sound overly simple, 99% of our adult lives are spent wearing rubber soled shoes which insulates us from the energy and electricity emitted from the earth. 
Hand to Heart: If taking our shoes off outside isn’t an option due to the heat or personal preference, sitting down or placing our hand on the ground and taking a few deep breaths while appreciating our surroundings is another way to gently ease into the practice. Placing the other hand to the heart will connect us to our own heartbeat.
Cooling Water: Immersion into a body of water – even a bath tub or pool – is another form of grounding. The planet is 75% water and energy exchange through this medium is powerful in connecting us back to it. 
Mindfulness Visualization: As we reengage with the planet, electrons from the earth are exchanged with our body. An energy exchange should begin to flow as we visualize a connection between the earth and the contact with our skin. If this feels meditational, we are on the right track! Grounding meditation encourages the physical connection between electrical frequencies of the our planet.


The Living Matrix: Our Mind, Spirit and Health

Grounding has long been recognized for its mental health benefits. While anecdotal feedback supports a substantial improvement in overall feelings of well-being, scientific studies are now trying to quantify the medical benefits of grounding. Could a simple 30-minute walk in the park, barefoot, improve sleep disorders? How about boosted immunity? Preliminary studies are beginning to reveal positive improvements in the fight against chronic illness, recovery of injuries, and more. Additional research shows a reduction in blood pressure in subjects experiencing hypertension and heart disease. These are impressive results! But, what exactly is the driving ‘force’ behind the improvement in these hard to treat diseases? One theory suggests that the earth, through a living matrix, connects all cells via electrical conductivity.

Although the studies on the physiological benefits of grounding are small, they offer encouraging insights into the treatment of chronic inflammatory and autoimmune diseases. As medical professionals continue to research its benefits, grounding, and other holistic healing practices, may increase in modern treatment practices promoting mind, body and spiritual well-being. 

Reconnecting by Disconnecting

If the idea that connecting with the planet, physically, seems reductive or simple, consider this. Most of our day-to-day routines involve living, working and communicating virtually. We may spend hours at a time staring at the blue light of a computer or mobile device screen. Some of our closest connections live hundreds of miles away, and yet, we forge bonds with them through electronic means (and thankfully so). When we step away from the glow of our monitors, we tend to insulate ourselves with layers of protection like headphones and KN95 masks. Many of us drive literally everywhere we go, even if our destination is within walking distance. 

Though these layers of protection are often necessary and a means of mobilization for those of us who are healing or experiencing accessibility concerns, they are leaving us exhausted. Compare and contrast a long day of work in an office with a day working outside in a garden – hands in the dirt, the fresh air in our lungs – and we generally feel invigorated. A day at the beach or on an open body of freshwater lingers with us for an entire week. Putting our toes into the sand and walking barefooted almost anywhere centers us promoting feelings of calm. 

To conclude, the medical results of grounding are promising, though preliminary, and more research is needed. However, as a free option that may improve mood, mental vitality and overall immunity, grounding is an encouraging option for those of us seeking additional health options.

"Walking. I am listening to a deeper way. Suddenly all my ancestors are behind me. Be still, they say. Watch and listen. You are the result of the love of thousands." – Linda Hogan