3 Grounding Techniques for Managing Distress

Grounding Techniques

Grounding techniques are a set of strategies that can help individuals manage their distress in difficult situations. They work by bringing the focus of the mind back to the present moment and away from distressing thoughts or memories. Grounding techniques can be helpful for people who experience anxiety, panic attacks, flashbacks, or other symptoms of trauma.

I have compiled lists of different grounding techniques you can experiment with to find what best works for you. Here are 3 to start with:

Five Senses Grounding

The five senses grounding technique involves using your five senses to focus on your surroundings and bring your attention to the present moment. Start by identifying five things you can see, four things you can touch, three things you can hear, two things you can smell, and one thing you can taste. This exercise can be helpful in bringing a sense of calm and reducing anxiety.

Body Scan

The body scan grounding technique involves bringing awareness to each part of the body and noticing any sensations or tension. Start at the top of your head and slowly work your way down to your toes. This exercise can help you become more aware of your body and release any physical tension that may be contributing to your distress.

Breathing Grounding

The breathing grounding technique involves focusing on your breath and counting each inhale and exhale. Start by taking a deep breath in through your nose and slowly exhaling through your mouth. Count each inhale and exhale up to 10, and then start over again. This exercise can help calm the mind and reduce anxiety.


Grounding techniques can be a helpful tool in managing distress and anxiety. By bringing the focus of the mind to the present moment, individuals can reduce symptoms of trauma and feel more in control of their emotions. Practicing grounding techniques regularly can also help individuals develop a greater sense of self-awareness and mindfulness.