By Kristin Sims
One of my favorite techniques is the 5 Things Rule. It engages my senses, my thoughts, and my focus on the here and now, and helps me gain a sense of grounding and safety. Take a deep breath.
Start with sight. Focus on anything you can see, and think your thoughts loudly in your mind. Just five things you see easily from wherever you are. You can be as vague or as descriptive as your mind allows.
Take a deep breath.
Move on to sounds and do the same. Your own breath or heartbeat count. What else can you hear around you?
Take another deep breath.
Move on to touch. Maybe you notice the way your feet feel in your shoes. Maybe you notice the way your tongue feels in your mouth. Maybe you physically touch something with your finger tips – your hair, your shirt, your phone, or you notice the air on your skin.
And take another deep breath.
Focus on smell. Even if you can’t name five just concentrate on your sense of smell. If you have lotion or chapstick, get them out now if you can. If nothing else, imagine your favorite smells as best you can.
And yet another deep breath.
And then, taste if it’s reasonable. Maybe take a drink of water, or imagine your can simply imagine your favorite flavors.
Finally, five mindful breaths. They don’t have to be deep or long or controlled. Just turn your attention to your breath and the way your body breathes. Feel yourself present within your body and wherever you happen to be. And always remember, you are not alone. The Force is with you, always!