I suffered from crippling anxiety for over 10 years. I was stuck in a prison of my own making. Watching other people live, laugh, love and grow but too scared to participate.
I was terrified by every aspect of life. Horrified that the traumas of my past would catch up with me, petrified by the terrors lurking in the present and dreading an unknown future.
Because of my toilet anxiety, I couldn't travel, go to the cinema, or wait in line without immediate access to bathroom facilities. Because of my social anxiety I was unable to go out with friends, introduce myself to strangers or speak publicly.
Even a trip to the supermarket across the road from my flat caused my stomach to cramp and my head to spin. And I was constantly worried for my own health and the lives of my loved ones.
I was a mere shadow of my former self. I felt pathetic, weak and worthless. My quality of life was terrible and sometimes life as it was didn't feel worth living.
But I managed to work through it. Panic and anxiety are no longer parts of my life. I am free to make my own choices without compromise. I am free.
And today I want to share with you my most beloved exercise. It was the first and fundamental step in my escape from the clutches of fear. If you only did one thing to overcome your anxiety, this is the one I'd recommend!
Simply because it breaks the "cycle of fear". I'll explain...
Introducing the "energetic cycle of fear"
The "energetic cycle of fear" is a self-fuelling imbalance of our chakra energy. Chakras are vital energy centres in our body. Healthy, balanced chakras maintain our physical, mental and emotional health and wellbeing.
However, past trauma, shocks, suppressed emotions and limiting beliefs can block certain chakras which leads to emotional imbalance as well as mental and physical health problems.
Fear is both a cause and an effect of chakra imbalance (hence the term "energetic cycle").
You see, if we suffer from anxiety our mind tends to race. We often overthink, overanalyse and worry A LOT. This focusses our energies in the brow chakra (situated on the forehead, also called the "Third eye") which is responsible for thinking and intuition amongst other things.
The constant worry makes the brow chakra work overtime. It requires extra energy because it is forced into hyperactivity. It takes the additional energy from the lower chakras, especially the root chakra at the base of your spine.
Now, the root chakra is responsible for survival functions. If it becomes imbalanced by the brow chakra extracting its energy, the resulting associated emotion is fear (especially existential fears such as fear of death, illness, financial loss etc).
So, if the root chakra is depleted through overactivity of the fearful mind and brow chakra, increases the fear that caused the racing mind in the first place.
Which leads to more overthinking, more energy demand in the brow chakra and even less energy in the root chakra. And hence more fear.
If this fear cycle isn't interrupted at some point, the downward spiral of decreasing root energy and increasing fear will become unbearable, crippling and life-consuming. It needs to be stopped if we ever want to reclaim our life.
And there is a simple way though to break this cycle which I want to share today.
Restoring balance in the root chakra
Since fear is caused by a lack of energy in the root chakra, the easiest way to reduce fear is by fuelling the root chakra with extra energy so it can restore balance.
And the best exercise I found to balance the root is grounding. Grounding connects you with the Earth energy, refuels the root chakra and stabilises or anchors you.
All of this will cause a noticeable reduction in your fear levels. And here is how it works:
Stand with your feet hip-width apart. Visualise that strong roots like those of a tree grow from the soles of your feet into the ground, deeper and deeper. They are anchoring you, stabilising you, giving you a solid foundation to build your life on. They also absorb the Earth's energy which is positive, healing and revitalising. Feel the energy filling your body. Feel the roots giving you security. Stay in the position as long as it is comfortable but a few minutes are usually enough.
Note: It doesn't matter whether you do this outside, on the ground floor or the upper floors of a building. It will still work the same. Just take off your shoes before you do it. Do once a day. First thing in the morning works best for most people but build it into your daily routine whenever it is most convenient for you.
I cannot recommend this exercise enough! I helped me reduce the severe burden of fear and started my healing process. It is the foundation of a fear-busting strategy.
There is a way out of anxiety. I know this from experience. You don't need to resign yourself to the thought that a life in fear is your destiny.
You don't need to compromise, accommodate your fears and limit your experiences. You can heal. And this is the first step.
You ARE worth. You deserve happiness. You deserve to be free.
And this tool will help you to get there.