Hellerwork Theme Month: Standing On Your Own Two Feet

February 16, 2011

I have grown to love feet.

When I was very young, several doctors recommend breaking both my femurs and resetting them in a different position, which was supposed to help the alignment of my feet. I still call her up out of the blue and say, “Thanks, Mom, for not breaking my legs.” Their prognosis, should not do the surgery, was I would likely be in a wheelchair by age 30. Well, I am closer to 40 now and I have never been in a wheelchair. In fact, I’ve climbed Mt. Rainier a couple times and started running last year. My feet feel better than ever.

What does it mean to you to Have Your Feet on the Ground? What are qualities or feelings that help you know if your “feet are on the ground”?

In my most recent Hellerwork Theme survey, here are the top answers to that question:

  • Being able to financially to support myself and/or family.
  • Feeling emotionally “grounded”.
  • I know who I am and what I want to do.

These answers all have to do with feeling secure. Holding unconscious tension in our feet gets in the way of this feeling of security. If you’ve had a stressful day/week/life, check in with your feet and just notice how they feel right now. Now give them a little massage and see if that changes how your feet feel. Does it also change, even a little bit, your stress level?

It’s so easy to get caught in the trap of “out there”. What I mean is thinking, “If the economy would be more stable, I would be able to feel more stable.” Can you stand your ground in the midst of a storm? And if you get knocked off your feet, what do you want to do, do you want to lie there or get back up?

These are big and rather abstract issues we all deal with. That’s what is so wonderful about the body. It’s solid and tangible. If you feel overwhelmed in any way, bringing caring attention to your feet is guaranteed to help. Here’s a tool to help you:

Exercise: Calf Micro-stretching for Creating Grounding

The calf muscles commonly get tight during stressful times and can contribute to feeling insecure. This exercise will be releasing fascia in your calves, which will benefit your feet and feelings of security. Stand facing a wall, about 24-36″ away. Place both hands on the wall and lean forward at your ankles until you feel a very tiny stretch in the calves. You should stop at the first sensation of a tiny stretch, resist the temptation to go for a “burn”. After 10-15 seconds, you should notice the tiny stretch sensation disappear. If so, lean slightly more towards the wall to the next tiny stretch sensation. If the micro-stretch doesn’t change after 10-15 seconds, back off a little and wait again. Go for two or three more rounds. Do this exercise daily if you are dealing with chronic stress.

{ 1 comment… read it below or add one }

Annie Thoe September 12, 2012 at 10:37 am

Hi Jason,
Just read your blog on feet. Lovely! Great ideas and nice job– Hope you keep writing. I like the insights you bring about our feet

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