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When thoughts of the trauma keep popping into your mind or you are experiencing anxiety or stress in a safe situation, a very helpful technique that can increase calm is a grounding exercise.

Grounding is a form of mindfulness where we are trying to be truly present and connected with what is actually happening in the moment. Most of the time our anxiety is triggered by thinking about the past or worrying about the future and we actually miss what is right in front of us – especially that we are safe and nothing bad is happening.

To ground yourself in the present. Sit up straight or stand tall and take a nice slow steady breath. Feel your feet firmly touching the ground and anchor them in the present moment.

Then in your mind (or out loud if you are alone) say:
5 things I can see
5 things I can feel
5 things I can hear
Perhaps you might be able to name something you can smell or taste.

Then following this say:
4 things I can see
4 things I can feel
4 things I can hear
Perhaps you might be able to name something you can smell or taste.

Then say:
3 things I can see
3things I can feel
3 things I can hear
Perhaps you might be able to name something you can smell or taste.

Then say:
2 things I can see
2 things I can feel
2 things I can hear
Perhaps you might be able to name something you can smell or taste.

Then say:
1 things I can see
1 things I can feel
1 things I can hear
Perhaps you might be able to name something you can smell or taste.

The more you practice this technique the more effective it becomes. If you are finding that you are not calming down, try saying it out loud even if it is just a whisper.