More information on grounding exercises can be found on pp. 18-19 of the Participant workbook.
Introduce a grounding exercise, with an option to practice diaphragmatic breathing or square breathing.
Individual grounding exercise
Guide the participants to:
- Situate yourself comfortably in your chair, feet on the floor.
- Keep your eyes open, and rest your gaze on an object on the other side of the room.
- Focus on the awareness of your breath.
- Purposely choose a deeper inhalation, a brief hold, a deeper exhalation, a brief hold.
- Emphasise physical tension reduction with every inhalation ('e.g., let your muscles melt').
- Clear your mind, as best as you can, of thoughts of the past or the future, so you can just experience the 'here and now'.
- Continue for the duration of the time allotted for the Individual grounding exercise.
- Finish with a wrap-up like: 'Now bring your awareness back to the room. Stretch what needs to be stretched. Look around you. Identify five colours in the room. Remind yourself where you are, how old you are, what day of the week this is.'
Standing mindful awareness activity
Group participants invited to stand up with feet shoulder width apart (ideally with eyes closed). Take time to 'pause and notice' your thoughts, feelings, urges, and body sensations whilst doing the following:
- Lean forward on the balls of your feet (pause and notice).
- Lean back (pause and notice).
- With your arms by your side, clench fists as tight as you can (pause and notice).
- Open palms as if you are receiving a package from someone (pause and notice).
- Raise your open hands in the air and open out (pause and notice).
- Put your hands on your hips, stand tall, open eyes, and look straight ahead (pause and notice).
Dyad grounding exercise
Break the group up into pairs. Within each dyad, have participants take turns to share their awareness to their partners:
Five things you can see,
Five things you can hear,
Five things you can feel. (Then reverse roles)
Four things you can see,
Four things you can hear,
Four things you can feel. (Then reverse roles)
Three things you can see,
Three things you can hear,
Three things you can feel. (Then reverse roles)
Two things you can see,
Two things you can hear,
Two things you can feel. (Then reverse roles)
One thing you can see,
One thing you can hear,
One thing you can feel. (Then reverse roles)
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