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It's November - time to get your shoes and socks off!

In my experience, the terms grounding and earthing have a variety of meanings depending on who you talk to. Some say they are the same thing, but my interpretation is that grounding is an exercise using a visualisation technique to imagine an energetical exchange - one where we connect our body through our feet (our roots) into the heart of the Earth. It’s where we bring our physical and electrical body into alignment because more often than not, it's out for all sorts of reasons, including stress. And earthing is about physically placing our bare feet on the Earth (which is full of negatively charged free electrons) to balance the positive charges which come our way from the likes of electron-deficient free radicals. We’re bombarded daily by radiation from our laptops, TV’s, Wi-Fi, Bluetooth and phone masts to name just a few, all of which cause an imbalance in the delicate electrical field and function of our body’s systems. I once heard the process of earthing described beautifully: if you consider yourself a battery and the Earth is your recharging point, then earthing is the method by which you recharge. It allows energy to flow between our bodies and the Earth, greatly reducing the levels of these induced voltages. That's the technical bit over with.

Earthing in more detail

For millennia in the West, we’ve considered ourselves more advanced than our ancestors and to those still living in harmony with nature, such as indigenous tribes. But that narrow mindset is now beginning to change as we realise how much wisdom we’ve lost - to our detriment. Some, if not many, are now beginning to turn 'back' to find answers to some of the most pressing issues we’ve ever faced as a species.

Earthing may sound insignificant, yet for me it is one of those answers. And it’s something we used to do an awful lot more of. There are many reasons we’ve become ‘unearthed’ - from the improved insulation in our houses and mattresses, to the invention of rubber soled trainers (and other types of shoes) in the 1960’s. The huge health benefits of receiving incredible free electrons from the Earth was discovered almost by chance by an American engineer called Clint Ober. His story is hugely fascinating and covered in the film Earthing The Movie (it’s free to watch on YouTube). He, and the research shown in the film, suggests that being ungrounded, or unearthed, is one (if not, the) leading cause of the many modern health issues we suffer from and that connecting regularly to the Earth helps reduce inflammation in the body. Some say that it should be the number one priority for all of us. Big statement! Some say that it should be the number one priority for all of us. Now that's a big statement!

Most surfaces work for walking barefoot, except tarmac. Even concrete, but of course, it's much nicer to try this on a surface you’d enjoy walking barefoot on – so perhaps the beach, or your lawn if you have one, or in a forest environment. Think sensuous – a surface that ignites your senses. Fascinatingly for me, as I love sea swimming, is that salt water is the optimal way to ground or earth yourself. They may not realise it, but sea swimmers who enthuse about the incredible mental and physical health benefits of taking a daily dip, are feeling so great because they are tapping into their very own source of earthing! But if you don’t have the twenty or so minutes it takes to receive the benefits of walking barefoot on the Earth, or to have a dip in the sea, then there’s a shortcut for all us time-poor Western folk – earthing matts! Stick one under your laptop or feet whilst you’re working or watching the TV and hey presto, you're earthed!

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