Self-care begins with maintaining our energy, and maintaining our energy begins with the root chakra.
You may have realized by now that to resolve any of the issues in our lives—whether serious or trivial, in our health or relationships—and then to go beyond and truly thrive, we need to start with working on ourselves. Our own condition is what we have the most power over and responsibility to care for. And as we use this power, it expands and grows.
While we can take many approaches to this, I suggest starting from the root. Everything in our lives stems from our consciousness and energy. By changing our energy first, we’ll see our thoughts, emotions, and even our physical body transform.
The root of the system of life energy (qi/chi) that animates our body is the first chakra (root chakra), found at the base of the trunk of our body. This chakra influences all of the chakras above it. We all came into the world through the first chakra. It houses our instinctual drives for food, sex, and survival and is the seat of the unconscious mind. With a healthy root chakra, we feel more confident and empowered to take care of ourselves, and we have a natural trust in the abundance of life. We also have a healthy and balanced libido and attitude toward sexuality.
How Is Your Root Chakra?
The energy in a chakra, like anywhere in the energy system, can be called “dark,” “sluggish,” or “blocked” as well as “bright,” “light,” or “flowing.” These words describe how the energy feels when we’re aware of it.
You can liken energy flow to the flow of water in a river. When a river is flowing without restriction, the water is clearer and its color is lighter. However, in areas where something obstructs the water, it can’t flow as smoothly or rapidly. Sediment and algae build up, and the water appears darker and denser. Just as clearer water is healthier for our body, clearer energy is healthier.
Even if our energy is clear and bright, how much of it circulates through each chakra is also important. Too little energy makes a chakra “weak,” diminishing aspects of us related to that chakra. Too much energy makes a chakra “overactive,” driving related aspects to the opposite extreme. Ideally, we want our chakras to be balanced. A balanced chakra’s energy is just right.
Our root chakra is weak/blocked if we:
- Feel lethargic.
- Lack will or passion.
- Have a poor sense of reality.
- Are oversensitive to external stimuli.
- Exhibit a nervous, insecure disposition.
- Have a poor body image.
- Engage in self-destructive behaviors.
- Feel overly self-conscious or ashamed.
Our root chakra is overactive if we:
- Engage in greedy, self-obsessed behavior.
- Have sexual addiction or unsafe sexual habits.
- Tend to be angry.
- Be attached to possessions or money.
Our root chakra is balanced if we:
- Have courage and strength.
- Live with passion and a love of life.
- Act with decisiveness and confidence.
- Easily forgive.
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Root Chakra Meditations
If you feel that your first chakra is out of balance, you can recalibrate it with these mind-body exercises from my book, Healing Chakras: Awaken Your Body’s Energy System for Complete Health, Happiness, and Peace.
Root Chakra Stimulation
- Sit in a butterfly position with the soles of your feet pressed against each other. Grab your feet with both hands.
- Raise your hips up and down so that your first chakra area at the base of your trunk is stimulated.
- Repeat ten times.
- Then sit comfortably with your back straight and breathe naturally, focusing on the sensations you feel.
Root Chakra Strengthening
- Stand with your legs shoulder width apart and bring your knees closer together, leaving a space the size of a fist between them. Raise your arms straight out in front of you with palms down. Straighten your back and hips.
- As you inhale, expand your abdomen and bring your thighs as far as you can toward the middle while tightening your anal sphincter/kegel muscles. At the same time, make your hands into fists.
- Then pause.
- Exhale while you relax your muscles.
- Repeat this exercise for ten minutes in the morning and evening.
Root Chakra Vibration for Circulation
- Sit with your back straight. It’s easier to do this exercise in a half-lotus or cross-legged posture if possible.
- Bring your mind to your tailbone and to where your trunk touches the floor or chair.
- Move your hips repeatedly, shaking them side to side, forward and back, up and down, or in a circle.
- Keep your upper body, including your shoulders, neck, and head, lose as you shake. Exhale through your mouth.
- At some point, you may feel heat in the tailbone area that may spread to your pelvic floor and lower back.
Regular Root Chakra Maintenance
Certain aspects of modern society can make it difficult to keep the first chakra healthy. Negative information and fear-based thinking are like a disease to the first chakra, creating a culture of overconsumption and greed. Society’s conflicting and unhealthy attitudes about sexuality further complicate the matter. For overall health and happiness, the first chakra must be healthy to serve as a foundation upon which all other chakras may be built.
We can preserve this foundation with regular daily chakra maintenance. I often talk about how our energy needs daily cleaning as much as our physical body does. Use the exercises above to keep your root chakra balanced, or if it is balanced, practice chakra meditations like this one for overall chakra health.
- [Video] Lecture and Meditation for First Chakra Healing
- Ignite Your Passion with Your First Chakra
- Activate Your Chakras to Stimulate Your Creative Power
- Healing Chakras for Change
- Personal Growth through Energy Practice