This has been a season of change.
I find myself in many different places throughout the week, and then either home or (mostly) away on the weekends for a multitude of reasons. It’s hard to know where lines should be built, and where the flow of work and life intersect. And in turn, it’s hard to slow down my mind when there are so many different things whirling around.
I’m trying to embrace this season of movement, and let it build an appreciation for the home I’ve cultivated in my Calgary apartment. The uncertainty of how long I would be living here has now disappeared, and my lease renewal has come and gone.
Grounding to me means finding my center point among the many slew of events, appointments, and commitments. Doing these activities helps me to slow down, to remember what my purpose truly is, and to let the busyness of everything around me melt away. These are my three grounding techniques, but I would love to hear what you use to clear the noise of life and to go back to the basics.
The outdoors hold a power. In my undergrad, I took an entire class about how the outdoors positively impacts your health, and I am a true believer in the healing powers of nature. As the days get shorter and the mornings more brisk, I like to spend as much time as possible outdoors. The outdoors are also great when you can use it to connect with friends. I believe that a walk along the Bow River and a good friend can solve a lot of the stress and worries that tend to come up. There is something magical about that pathway, whether in the bask of a summer sun or the darkness of a winter night, it cannot be experienced anywhere else.
If you don’t happen to live in Calgary, I suggest trying to seek out any body of water in your neighborhood. I notice that the proximity helps to slow my breathing by simply getting lost in the movement it takes, either in rhythmic waves or a fast-paced river. And though winter has come quickly, there is something about the crispness in the air that can suddenly jolt you into the right headspace.
I have loved books ever since I could remember. The potential each one holds lights an excitement inside of me that can hardly be matched by reading anything online. The physical touch of a book, the heaviness it takes in your hands, it suddenly transforms me into a different place.
And yet, reading can feel tedious at times.
I remember feeling a dread upon reading as my required list of textbookss grew by each semester. Being forced to read isn’t enjoyable, but finding a joyful book amidst the requirements can be an outlet within it all. I’m thankful my school days and required readings are behind me, and I continually seek out new books to read to help me take perspective on what’s happening in the here and now.
Pen and paper are the cheapest therapy I have yet to find. Many times I have merely let myself write without purpose to read back what’s on the page and finally understand how I’ve been feeling. Often the heaviness of stress and worry come from the weight of us carrying it alone, so even if you do not share how you’re feeling, some of the weight releases when the words get onto paper.
Sometimes this looks like lists, such as the massive to-do list that has been brewing in my mind, and sometimes writing is a string of words into a semi-legible sentence. Write what works for you, and let the judgment of what happens on the paper be left at the way side.
What activities do you find yourself doing to ground yourself into the moment?
** Photos taken by the lovely Hannah Brooks | hannahbrooksphotography.com **