Each time I teach a Somatic Experiencing® training, I am touched yet again by the impact of people’s experience when they discover the power of the body-mind connection and the importance of grounding ourselves. Having a “home base” to return to in the body is an invaluable resource for re-centering and stabilizing ourselves on a moment-to-moment basis. Having an awareness of when we are off-center becomes a signal, like a meditation bell, that calls us back home to our grounded and stable body.
Because many of us live in cultures that value the brain over the body, we have lost the awareness that our body and our consciousness are an intertwined, collaborative, interdependent whole. Communication is constant between body and mind, and learning to have a place to reliably re-center in the midst of daily life and its challenges can be a profound gift.
And so, for this week’s experiment, I invite you to do the following process and notice your experience as you amplify the sensations of having a solid “home base” right there inside you.
First, bring to mind the deep currents that flow in the oceans of the world. These currents run so deep that disturbances on the surface of the oceans don’t touch or bother them. Imagine that there is a place in you that is as undisturbed as these deep currents. For some people, that place is in their belly. For others, it’s the pelvic floor, at the bottom of their abdomen. For others, it’s their heart. There’s no right answer here—your home base can be anyplace in your body, related to the core of you. The key quality to it is that it is settled and undisturbed.
Take a few moments, now, to sense into your internal home base. Notice the sensations you experience as you settle in there. Then, take a few moments to hang out there and notice how the rest of your body, as well as your mental and emotional states, responds to taking time to settle. For those of us in busy worlds, there is often a need to learn how to allow enough time to settle before we rush on to the next thing. Think of a snow globe that’s been shaken, and then give yourself time for all the small particles of snow to truly settle. It’s that kind of time you want to offer to yourself with this exercise.
Your internal home base is a resource that’s available to you all the time, even when you’re upset or in the throes of meeting a challenge. With practice, you can access it when you’re in an active state and when you’re agitated. Being able to drop into home base will help you move through activated moments and return more easily to a relatively settled, centered state of body-mind being.