Like many, I struggle with certain stressful family dynamics that seem to pop up like clockwork during events. While being aware of these patterns is helpful, sometimes you need to be proactive about your approach to these situations.
One of my favorite ways to protect my energy is by making sure I'm grounded and then, of course, using crystals or stones which support that intention.
Okay, but what is "grounding?"
If you're new to the practice or aren't sure what I mean, grounding is this: any process that gets your awareness out of your head and connects you to your body, the Earth (ground - hence the name), and or the present moment. It's a centering, a homecoming, to the peace and calm available within you and to the truth of who you are.
Grounding is fantastic when done before a challenging situation (ahem, Thanksgiving dinner). And it can also be helpful in the moment when stress or anxiety has you in their claws, and you're struggling to break free.
My 3 favorite grounding practices
Get into nature. It should come as no surprise that the best way to get grounded is literally by putting your bare feet on the ground. If you're anywhere north of Texas, I get that this becomes less and less practical as the year winds down, but there are a zillion ways you can still get connected to nature. Take a walk. Hug a tree. Talk to your plant babies. Just step outside in the crisp air and take 5 slow, deep breaths. Feel the Earth supporting you and imagine your worries soaking into the thirsty soil below you.
Meditation. Breathwork. Mindfulness. Whatever you want to call it, bringing your attention to your breath forces your mind to stop spiraling and anchors your awareness in your body. You can do 2 deep breaths in the car before walking into dinner (or at the table before you respond to a triggering comment), or you can carve out 5 minutes daily to make sure you are grounded before you "need" it. I have a whole meditation course available to help you explore how different meditation methods might fit into your existing schedule.
Use crystals! On the mornings I need extra support, I select my bracelets and the stones for my pockets like I'm putting on armor. My #1 stone for supporting grounding is Smoky Quartz. I have a cluster at each entrance to my home, a piece next to my laptop, and I regularly wear a Smoky Quartz bracelet. It absorbs negative energy and has a solid, practical vibe that helps you do less thinking and more doing, especially if you're struggling with getting a task started.
Another favorite for grounding is black Tourmaline. Its steady, deeply grounded energy is highly protective, especially for anyone who feels like they pick up and absorb the energy/feelings of others. There is always a chunk of Black Tourmaline on my desk, and I often add it to my bracelet stack for the day.
The last stone that is surprisingly grounding, in a really loving way, is Rhodonite. While traditionally seen as a mineral that supports self-love, Rhodonite does so in a practical, grounded, honest way. It helps you feel comfortable and accept all aspects of yourself, making it that much easier to drop into your body and stay awhile without judgment.
However you choose to work grounding into your holiday season, I hope you add it to your self-care routine. Staying connected to your body and out of your mind will serve you well as you navigate the months ahead.