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  • Kennedy McLean

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

Updated: Dec 1, 2019

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 info@kennedymclean.com

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