Yesterday afternoon my husband took my daughter to the mall and out to dinner. When he called me to run out and grab some food from him, I ran outside to see that he oddly didn’t pull into the driveway (which is right by my front door) like he normally would, meaning I had to run to the end of the driveway into the street like a crazy lady with a wet head and no bra on to grab the bag from him. I was leaving Jaxon and the dog inside so I quickly ran to the car, asked Ella if she had a good time, and then ran back up the driveway as they immediately pulled away to run more errands. It was probably a 25 second transaction in retrospect. I went to open my front door and there was my little 2-year-old in the window, hand on the doorknob and a mischievous look on his face.
He locked me out!
That little stinker! Even though a bit of panic immediately came over me, I remained calm. I quickly looked to see if I could catch my husband, but it was too late, he drove off quickly. I left my phone and my keys inside, and had to act fast. My next move was to try and coax Jaxon to unlock the door just as he locked it. He just giggled at me and wiggled the door knob as my dog sat next to him looking concerned. I ran over to my next door neighbor’s house, but they didn’t answer the door. I quickly looked and saw that my friendly neighbors across the street had their car in the driveway so I ran over there after peeking in the window at Jax to make sure he was staying in the foyer. My neighbor looked more panicked than me and quickly handed me her cellphone to run across the street with so I could keep an eye on my son while I called my husband. I tried Mike twelve times before he answered the phone. Twelve. I don’t even leave Jax alone to throw out dirty diapers in my outdoor trashcan unless I toss it by the door, half my body inside. Luckily he stayed right in the window by the door laughing at me, and Willie just sat down next to him. I considered getting a ladder and breaking in somehow, but Mike made it back fairly quick. I got in, my son was fine, and I will do everything in my power to make sure that never happens again. I was actually pretty calm during all of this, I felt like everything was going to be okay even though in those 10-15 minutes of being locked out ANYTHING could have happened. All I could do was focus on the present moment and do what my instincts and common sense told me to do. Looking back we can laugh at what a cute little devil he is. This will definitely be a story I remind him of, even when he’s 40! Seriously, there is never a dull moment when you are a parent, right?
Instincts, safety, survival, family, grounding … these are all things associated with the root chakra.
A chakra is a center of organization that receives, assimilates, and expresses life force energy. The word “chakra” literally translates to “wheel” or “disk” which are connected to 7 different energy levels in the human body symbolizing 7 colors of the rainbow. These Chakras function as valves that either let energy in or out. It is believed that Chakras regulate all functions of our mind, body and spirit.
These swirling wheels of energy correspond to massive nerve centers in the body. Each of the seven main chakras contains bundles of nerves and major organs as well as our psychological, emotional, and spiritual states of being. Since everything is moving, it’s essential that our seven main chakras stay open, aligned, and fluid. If there is a blockage, energy cannot flow. Chakras aren’t tangible, but like feelings they have a strong effect on the body … expressing spiritual energy on the physical plane. Also, while chakras have a location, they do not physically exist and that location may slightly vary from person to person, but their relationship to each other remains consistent.
(two great books on the chakras recommended by my friend, Kristin)
Without a strong rooted foundation, very little can be accomplished. The two horizontal currents flowing in and out of each chakra (reception and expression) mix with our vertical currents of energy to to express ourselves on different chakra levels. Speech is expressed through the throat chakra, which is a mixture of thoughts, will, and breath. Sometimes these energy systems can be blocked, so if you have trouble communicating, your throat chakra is experiencing a blockage. Limited belief, unhealthy habits, trauma, and emotional scars are all examples of things that create these blockages. Sometimes we may even experience these blockages on a physical level. For example, emotional pain that results in a blockage of the heart chakra may cause chest pain. If we have negative feelings, we will be filtering negative energy through our chakras and into our body. Over time this can make our body ill. Not all blocks are the same, even in the same chakra, so different types of blocks need different types of care to help heal.
I thought it would be fun to do a series on this blog about the chakras and what I have learned. I find this subject fascinating and hope you will too! So many of life’s problems stem from too much or too little of something. We spend our lives searching for balance. We also strive to understand issues of love, relationships, power and spirituality, emotion and instinct.
The chakra system describes the energetic structure through which we organize our life-force. When we understand this arrangement, we can better understand out internal battles, struggles and needs. The way we cope with stress and negative experiences usually involves either increasing one’s energy to fight the stress, or decreasing it to withdrawal. Understanding how the chakra system works may help us to find that balance and either de-clutter the excess energy, or fill the space with love where there is a deficiency.
Our first chakra, the root chakra,
is the foundation for the entire chakra system.
Each chakra has a “right” and an “identity.” Loss of these rights will block a chakra. The root chakra is simple: the right to be here. Our right to exist, to take up space, to be an individual. The identity associated with this chakra is known as “physical identity.” Identifying with our body means we are identifying with our soul’s expression in the physical form. This is a necessary skill, like identifying when we are hungry or need to sleep.
As you see from the graphic above, imbalance of the root chakra will result in fear, anxiety, poor focus, greed or laziness. When our survival is threatened, naturally the instinct is fear. Understanding the origin and reason for that fear, focus or anxiety for being there will help us to become more confident, focused or calm. Awareness is an important step, then self-care and self-love.
Another thing I found very interested was the fact that food has basic vibrational qualities, above and beyond their nutritional makeup. Food prepared with love is far more beneficial than food prepared by a fast food worker that hates his job.Various types of foods have different vibrational qualities as well, and can roughly be associated to various chakra levels. The root chakra is associated with meat and proteins. This makes sense because meat is probably the most “physical” food one can eat. It also stays in our digestive system longer so its energy occupies the lower part of our bodies. Although one can find grounding and balance on a vegetarian diet by eating adequate protein, I can say I feel much more grounded, centered, and nourished after 18 years of going on and off of a vegetarian diet now that I am an omnivore. I found this information related to the chakras particularly fascinating!
Ways to balance the root chakra (mudladhara):
- Eat protein rich foods, but not too much.
- Other “red” foods aside from meat, like plants such as beets, red cabbage, strawberries and apples may have energy beneficial for the root chakra.
- Imagine red: red is the color associated with mudladhara. Close your eyes and scan your body envision a red glowing light at the base of your spine.
- Practice yoga! Many of the yoga postures you would practice in a vinyasa class are grounding … from child’s pose, to mountain pose, to savasana! I particularly love a supported malasana (yogi squat) and easy seat to support and ground my root chakra. Supported bridge is a good one too! (I use these cork blocks in my practice and absolutely love the support they give.)
- Meditate. I included a short root chakra meditation below!
- Aromatherapy: diffusing or applying essential oils such as Frankincense, Vetiver, Myrhh, Ginger, Patchouli, Black Pepper, Clove and Sandalwood help support grounding the root chakra (see what high quality oils I recommend here).
Here is the link to a short meditation to nourish and ground the root chakra. I recorded this last year for our online yoga & meditation with essential oils program. Enjoy and stay tuned for the other six chakras soon!