Whenever you feel physically stiff, groggy, ungrounded or emotionally stuck, I recommend practicing the following exercise found in Shortcuts to Inner Peace by Ashley Davis Bush, LCSW:
EXERCISE – BE A TREE
1. Stand up and reach your arms overhead, stretching as if trying to touch the sky.
2. Close your eyes and imagine being a tree.
3. Visualize your body as a strong trunk, your arms as branches, and your fingers as leaves.
4. Imagine roots extending through your feet into the earth.
5. Let yourself sway in the wind.
6. Lower your arms then pull up energy from your roots as you bring arms up overhead again.
7. Breathe in deeply and exhale slowly. Feel yourself grounded, rooted, and connected to the majesty of trees.
PURPOSE OF EXERCISE:
“Paying attention to the details of our bodies and slowly exhaling calms our stress response to the world around us. When we stretch and breathe deeply, we are energized. We extend our limbs to connect to a classic natural symbol of strength and, and we pull energy up from our roots. We can embody the energy of life that is the tree.”
~Ashley Davis Bush, LCSW