• Kennedy McLean

5, 4, 3, 2, 1, Grounding Technique

This is known as the 5, 4, 3, 2, 1 Grounding technique. Grounding techniques turn our attention away from thoughts, memories, or worries, and refocusing on the present moment. This sensory awareness technique is a grounding exercise with 5 steps that can significantly help reduce symptoms of anxiety or trauma triggers.

How To Do It:

Start by taking a few slow breaths.

5. Look for FIVE specific things in your surroundings. It could be a pen, a spot on the ceiling, a car. Just count 5 things that you can see.

4. Next, acknowledge FOUR things you can touch around you. Maybe it is your hair, a pet, or the ground under your feet.

3. The next step is to listen for THREE things you hear. This can be any external sound. It could be a car driving by or the furnace. Try to focus on things you can hear outside of your body.

2. Now acknowledge TWO things you can smell. Maybe you at home and smell something in the kitchen or coffee brewing, if you are outside maybe you notice the way the air has a certain smell.

1. Finally, notice ONE thing you can taste. What does the inside of your mouth taste like, coffee, toothpaste, something you ate for lunch?

If you are currently experiencing symptoms resulting from trauma or high levels of anxiety, psychotherapy can help you learn to manage your symptoms in the here and now. On a more long-term basis, it may enable you to live symptom-free. Send me an email to book a consultation or your first session

About Kennedy

I have been working in the field of addiction and mental health for almost 10 years. I am currently a therapist in private practice based out of Etobicoke and I treat clients throughout Ontario.   

My practice currently focuses on attachment, couples and working with people of all ages who have experienced trauma. As a therapist, I am trained to help people with all kinds of issues stress, depression, anxiety, and grief for example.

Anything written in my blog posts is my own thoughts. They are intended to offer information that may be interesting or useful for contemplation.


Nothing I have written is intended to be a substitute for seeking professional help.

-Kennedy McLean

For the health and safety of clients and staff, the office has a fragrance-free policy. Please refrain from wearing scented products when attending your appointments. Service dogs are welcome.

Kennedy McLean Counselling & Psychotherapy Services Online Counselling and Telephone Psychological Therapy and Psychotherapy throughout Ontario, Canada including  Etobicoke Psychotherapy and Toronto, North York, Vaughan, Thornhill, Mississauga, Brampton, Guelph, Hamilton, Burlington, and Oakville. Kennedy McLean © 2020

  • Facebook
  • Pinterest
  • Instagram