Are you familiar with grounding, or earthing as some may call it? No, it’s not a form of punishment, such as giving a child a time-out. It involves direct skin contact with the earth and there are so many benefits–this may be feet or even hands and a check, which my daughter preferes.

The reason I wanted to touch on this is because grounding is something one of my children naturally does when she’s overstimulated and it usually results in some strange looks from others and judgment. I’ve been told, with my child laying on the grass with leaves all in her hair, that it’s “gross,” and “I would never let my child do that!” Yet it’s something that can bring her an extreme amount of calm in a relatively short period (usually around half an hour)–so I wanted to spread awareness to break the stigma and encourage others to participate.

Grounding can aid in immune response which can assist in reducing inflammation, help heal wounds as it improves blood flow, and those with autoimmune diseases.

It can improve sleep and increase energy, help neutralize the stress response, is self-soothing, and assist with emotional regulation.

In the crunchy community, it has become common to walk outdoors barefoot to reap the benefits of grounding–which I’m extremely thankful for as it helps spread awareness and break the stigma.

So when she grounds how do we support her?

We keep the sun out of her eyes.

I attempt to block other senses that tend to overwhelm her, such as covering her ears so that her hands are free to self-soothe. I do this when she comes to me for cuddles, too.

Sometimes she reaches out to hold my hand.

I try to protect her from the stares of others with my body by sitting between her and others.

Do I ever try to move her?

Only when it’s unsafe, like right in the middle of a busy walking area. When she grounds, there’s usually no prior notice or sign, she just goes down. So leading her to another area isn’t always possible. Sometimes it looks uncomfortable, such as grounding on cement, and I would like to guide her to grass–but she’s unmovable (unless I were to pick her up which is not acceptable) and I need to remind myself to respect her needs, as uncomfortable as they may look to me.

It amazes me how she came to find this all on her own.

Do you or your child participate in grounding?

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