6 Secrets to Grounding

from the Plant Masters

Tigre, Student of Nature

24 Jan 2018

Plants are the original masters of rooting.

We can learn so much about establishing a stable foundation for personal and physical growth from our green brothers and sisters!

In nature, the majority of plants’ water and nutrients are absorbed by their root systems. So, their health, life experience, and vitality is greatly determined by where they locate their roots.

And humans? We’re not so different.

Let’s explore 6 ways that plants can help you learn how to find peace and a sense of rootedness in your life.

1 | It Begins in the Pod

Our genes play a large role in how rooted we feel in a particular place. While we can’t change them (or can we…?), our genetic makeup dictates a great deal of which environments we’ll find most comfortable.

Although our amazing ability to adapt (and make tools and technology) means that we’re able to to inhabit almost every biome this beautiful Earth provides, those assets and adaptations come at an energetic cost. Understanding your genetic heritage and what adaptations you might need to make is essential in choosing a quality location to put down roots.

Just like a sub-tropical plant won’t enjoy a Minnesota blizzard without substantial green house protection and heat, your physical, mental and emotional needs will likely need some tools for helping you thrive in the location you seek.

Knowing your genetic and ancestral lineage can point you to places and environments where you may find greater resonance and connection.

2 | Root When Conditions (and You) are Ready

A plant’s seed usually has little-to-no ability to choose where it will land. Blown by the wind, picked up by a blue jay, or exploding from a poppy pod, seeds land where they fall. But it does have control over one key factor, and that’s when it’s time to root.

A seed would have no future if it started rooting the moment it touched the ground (unless it happened to be the exact right time). Some plant progeny are fortunate to be released somewhere conducive for immediate growth; others must wait for a harsh winter to end, or for sufficient moisture, or to pass some time in the microbial soup of a bear’s belly before they’re ready to root.

It would also help US to take right timing into account when we aim to root into a place.

But, we don’t always get a choice… Our families may drag us around the world for business or military work. Others may stay in the same town for an entire lifetime. Whether we come from nomadic or sedentary families, there comes a point where we’ll decide where to live on our own.

Often, we set roots when conditions aren’t right for our needs.

This may be due to cultural, familial or work pressures; miscues from our partners and lovers; or a lack of experience and personal understanding of what our essential needs are.

Take time for your internal and external conditions to feel “right,” (but don’t wait for perfect as there is no such thing); life is ever changing. If we root too soon—or at an inopportune time—we are easily toppled and uprooted by the first challenges we experience.

3 | Allow Time to Root

Rooting takes time. Just as a corn plant won’t pop off kernels a week after it’s planted, don’t expect your own fruits to bloom immediately. Sure, some things in your life may find greater acceleration and productivity immediately after rooting, but this flush of growth is usually due to groundwork you’ve already laid.

Once a seed is ready to start growing, the first thing it does is send down roots. The roots then expand; anchoring themselves for stability and seeking out resources and beneficial relationships to help them thrive. Only then do they begin to sprout toward the sun.

So, like a seed, give yourself time to establish your roots in a place. A pattern we’ve observed in ourselves and clients is the temptation to give up (see #5, below) or re-root elsewhere without giving ourselves enough time to commit and anchor into a place (or business, or relationship). We are expecting to sprout and bear fruit before we have the roots established to support that!

With time comes nuance and experience; two of our best teachers. Time also allows us to build our connections to nourishment (love, financial, nutritional, recreational) in the place we’ve rooted into. To know our surroundings, rhythms, and environment requires time and participation. Trying to rush or shortcut the process can hurt our ability to fully ground and root, causing us to feel unstable and seek a new environment again and again.

We may also need time to test our environments for rooting, or perhaps we know that our current place is only temporary. These perceived “delays” in finding home can be approached as exercises to build our foundation… Groundwork we’ll surely need for the fertile soil that awaits us in the future.

You can think of this process as if you are a seedling in a small pot, which gets transplanted a few times into ever bigger containers to accommodate for growth and resilience.

This must happen before it’s ready to be planted in the wild garden.

4 | Get Help from Friends

Although you probably feel utterly and hopelessly alone sometimes, the truth is that you’re surrounded by life. Sure, some of those beings might be toxic, but the majority of plants, animals (and HUMANS) are at least benign or outright beneficial.

Just as no human is an island, no seed or plant lives in isolation. When sending down roots, a plant enters a world teeming with life. Microscopic bacteria, fungal hyphae, and armies of multi-cellular creatures are dancing a complicated choreography of interdependence. Roots enter into these worlds with a large role to play.

Leaves above ground work diligently to capture sunlight and convert it into sugars that are then traded in the soil for exchange of nutrients, water access and protection from enemies. (It’s like an underground sugar market!) Some plants’ roots merge with fungal networks that help pull water and essential minerals over great distances to boost the plants’ immune systems and keep them alive. Mutually beneficial relationships begin to emerge, strengthening their participants. Friendships begin to emerge.

When we begin to root into a place, it serves us well to get to know our neighbors, local shop owners and actively participate in our local community. By engaging with those around us, we increase resiliency and stability. We are so much more vulnerable to attack (being sick, being burgled, etc.) if we can’t rely on others to support and look out for us.

Plants thrive in community and so do we!

Actively curate and create a trusted community wherever you’re rooting.

5 | Never Give Up

When a tree dies and falls onto another tree—if it doesn’t uproot the living tree or out shade it—what do you think the living tree does? Give up? No, it finds a way to grow toward the light.

When you get knocked down, blown over, or crushed, it may be tempting to give up and quit, but there’s no reward or growth in quitting. Yes, sometimes you’re dealt setbacks and challenges. But, they may also be blessings in disguise to give you an opportunity to reassess and reframe your goals to ones that align more with who you are on the inside.

Continue to grow towards the light.

It may not look like someone else’s Pinterest-perfect expression, but it’ll be your unique, beautiful form reaching for your highest potential.

6 | Ground with Gratitude

Life is short, accidents can happen, and we can lose this precious gift at a moment’s notice. If you are currently rooted, or seeking to set down roots, be sure to offer gratitude for the place you root into.

Gratitude can come in many forms. Verbally thank the space and environment you’re settling into. See it as a living entity that listens and feels your emotions. No place will check off every box, but be thankful for what you do have. Gratitude also looks like taking care of your space: clean it, update it, protect it. Loving your spaces becomes an extension of self care and loving yourself.

Lola and I have experienced the negative side of not appreciating a space, and we received a swift kick in the pants to leave.

Expressing gratitude and thankfulness for the space you inhabit—no matter the perceived conditions—is a great way to ensure that your departure, when it’s time, is as smooth and seamless as possible.

Are You Ready to Begin Rooting?

No matter what stage of life you’re in, some form of rooting will be needed. Sometimes, it’s settling into a hotel room, other times you’ll be sinking roots for decades into your own home and land.

Let us know what challenges or excitement you’ve discovered when grounding into your own space. We love hearing from you and are always grateful for any lessons you’ve discovered in your own “humaning” process.

xo!

Tigre - Creator of Wildly Amazing Things at WildPlayground.com

About the Author

Tigre Pickett loves exploring what it means to be human. From how we engage with each other to how we interact with the world, humaning for Tigre means pushing beyond our comfort zones in order to learn who we truly are. When not exploring what it means to be human, Tigre loves creating engaging programs for clients, work in the garden, and share quality time of art, food and play with his family and friends.

A Princeton graduate and self-trained artist, Tigre has traveled through South America on bicycle, working at organic farms and shamanic healing centers. A devoted student of holistic perspectives, he appreciates the potency and teachings nature provides humanity. His one wish is that humans in places of power embrace humility, kindness, and share abundance in all its forms.

Connect with Tigre: facebook | Instagram | email: love@wildplayground.com

3 Comments

  1. willem van Aalst

    Love your piece. I think you know where I would like to reroot but I am taking my time for it to be right.

    Lots of love

    Willem

    Reply
    • Tigre

      Ha ha, of course! Thank you, Willem!

      Reply
    • mamajuana

      Wonderful piece – always rooting for you! 

      Reply

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