Happiness is in the Earth: A Newbie's Guide To Earthing
Maybe you don't remember the last time you felt truly happy and free while being outside, but if anyone does, it's your mother. She may bring it up just to break the ice with your new friend by saying something like:
"She used to run around our front yard in nothing but her birthday suit, remember?"
Still, there's one thing that Mom got right. You probably did feel much happier running through the grass without your shoes because once upon a time, you used to be really into "earthing."
What on earth is earthing?
These days, the term "earthing" refers to sitting, standing or walking barefoot outside so that you have direct contact with grass, sand and the bare ground. It doesn't count if you're walking on asphalt, rubber or other surfaces that don't conduct electricity.
The whole point of earthing is to physically connect yourself to the Earth's natural electrical field because you, my friend, are actually a battery. Your body has its own electrical field, storing and conducting electricity.
For people who want to bring the benefits of earthing indoors, some companies sell silver, carbon or other conductive-fiber based mats you can even sleep on that connect to a ground rod outside or a grounded power supply. Earthing products don't actually use electricity. Their job is just to bring healing ions inside for you.
What are the benefits of earthing?
One of the leading researchers on earthing -- James L. Oschman, Ph.D. and his colleagues -- have published much on what earthing does for you in books like the "Biophysics of Earthing (Grounding) the Human Body."
1. Earthing gives you tons of negative ions! We mentioned the benefits of negative ions in our guide to space clearing, and for those who don't know, negative ions are oxygen atoms charged with an additional electron. Negative ions lift your spirits and seriously improve the oxygen flow to your brain, among many other benefits.
- Walking barefoot outside balances the nervous system while boosting your circulation.
- Earthing counteracts inflammation and gives you an external rush of antioxidants.
- Letting the ground's free electrons enter your body stabilizes your body's natural electrical field, which can have profound effects on building up your immune system.
- People with non-insulin-dependent diabetes benefit so much from earthing that they start regulating the glucose in their blood better.
- Sleeping on a mattress with a grounding system helps people sleep better and experience less insomnia.
- Just standing barefoot outside on the ground for even just 15 minutes can ease or even eliminate jet lag.
- In terms of muscle recovery, studies showed that grounding yourself to the earth decreases the amount of pain and creatine kinase in the muscles while they rest.
In another study, grounded subjects showed improved heart-rate variability readings. It proved how much earthing helps the health of your whole cardiovascular system.
What is the science behind earthing?
In the simplest terms, everyone needs recharging to keep going. The Earth's electric field is like a gigantic battery that we access while grounding ourselves. When strolling along the ground barefooted, we tap into a direct supply of electrons that help relieve lots of disorders, especially those related to inflammation.
Our bodies conduct electricity due to the electrolytes in our blood and our cells, which allows us to absorb the ions we need easily from the ground. It's very easy for free electrons to flow within our bodies.
How do we do this earthing business properly?
While grounding yourself outside is easiest and free of charge, let's look at both the best ways to do this practice inside and outside. Remember that the practice works because the soles of your feet and your hands are the most conductive areas on your body.
To ground yourself outdoors:
- Go outside and sit or walk around barefoot for half an hour and even a full hour if you have the time. Even as little as 10 minutes gives you benefits!
- Walk or run in the sand barefooted by a nearby lake or beach.
- Go out before 6:00 p.m. because excessive stimulation of your feet at night may make it harder to sleep.
- If sitting under a tree while barefooted, keep your hands against the ground too.
- Avoid earthing in high-EMF environments with stray voltage from nearby power plants or power lines to avoid absorbing the unhealthy kind of electrical energy.
- Earthing outside builds mindfulness simply in having to watch where you step! Plus, you can use it as a walking meditation too.
To ground yourself indoors:
- First, check out if you have a grounded or ungrounded power supply running through your home's outlets. Buy an outlet ground tester at any local hardware store to find out.
- If you have grounded power, then you can plug in earthing products and accessories right into the wall! (mats, ankle/wrist bands, etc)
- If you have ungrounded power, then you need to put a grounding stake outside and connect the cables of your earthing accessories to that.
Some of the best indoor earthing supplies are a universal grounding mat that you can put under your computer or underneath your work desk so that your bare feet can rest on it. You can check your outlet with a ground tester to ensure that you're only plugging into a grounded power outlet.
Otherwise, you can buy a grounding stake that you put outside. Grounding fitted sheets work the same way. Even better, you can use patches to target a specific area on your body, or wear body bands and heel straps so you don't even have to think about it.
Why is earthing so important in this high-tech age?
In today's world, we literally avoid touching the ground or anything with a trace of dirt at all costs. We have completely insulated ourselves in every way. Our rubber and plastic-based shoes, now made mostly with synthetic materials instead of natural leathers, don't absorb any of the Earth's free electrons. We hardly even see unpaved ground.
Plus, we spend most of our time indoors -- totally cut off from the Earth's healing negative ions -- behind computers and smart devices that constantly generate an excessive amount of electrically positive ions that make us age faster. You could say all this screen exposure is subtly "sucking the life" right out of us in terms of the way they affect our bioelectric fields. All of us live in an invisible ocean of electromagnetic fields, which come from the wiring in our homes, the radiation from our cell phones and Wi-Fi signals. Earthing provides a very badly needed counterbalance to the increased amounts of energetically stressful activity we're experiencing more and more.
When earthing outside is so easy to do, then why not try it? It's a free invitation to wellness that can help you in so many ways, so go for it.
About the Author: Suzanne Leopold started Living Mavens in 2016 to share some of the products and techniques that help her focus inward and transform her life. With over 15 years of exploring energy and manifesting modalities, she is passionate about creating a life she loves and sharing her discoveries with others. To learn more on how to consciously create a life you love, go to www.livingmavens.com