by Ceci

Over the past 2 years, I have moved over 8 times. From within a city, to between provinces, to across the country. Finding a sense of groundedness has been incredibly difficult throughout this process. Moving to a new place is challenging. However, creativity has carried me through. 

I am a visual artist, writer, and dancer. I highly believe that everyone is creative in one way or another. It may not be in a traditional “artistic” form, but I believe there are creative practices that we can continue to utilize and cultivate, that inevitably shape us into who we truly are. Here are some grounding practices and reflection questions that I have found helpful over the years to keep me grounded through periods of instability. 

Grounding practices & reflection questions for improving your relationship with your time & body: 

Find stable ways to take care of your body. This can look like: light movement (eg. stretching), self massage, or applying a bit of a muscle relief oil at the end of the day, to name a few. When possible, I treat myself to acupuncture, cupping, or a massage. Clinique acupuncture sociale d’Hochelaga has sliding scale pricing which I really appreciate. Acupuncture has provided me with relief and calmness that I do not often experience elsewhere (especially as a sober person with anxiety!). 

Pleasure in movement. Dance in your living room to your favorite music, or find any form of movement that actually feels pleasurable to you. For a while I struggled with the idea of seeing movement solely as running or participating in team sports, but since I found a form of movement that felt good, my relationship with movement has shifted for the better. Lately this has been taking dance and pole classes which has been incredibly empowering and liberating – I recommend Milan Pole Dance Studio in Montréal. It is about a 3-5 minute walk from Place d’Armes metro station. 

Listen to your body when possible. With fluctuating mental health, at some times this can be much more difficult than others. When you have the capacity to reflect, ask yourself: what situations are you enduring? How do you truly want to spend your time? What situations bring you more energy, and which situations drain you (perhaps look at your calendar to reflect more specifically in this question)? Take some time to reflect on these questions, and perhaps create a ‘more of:’ list – how do you want to spend your individual time, how do you want to

spend time with loved ones, how do you want to show up to work or community spaces? 

Grounding through ritual. Ritual may look different for each person, but personally I ask: How can I bring intentionality to my everyday routine? Pick one thing to start, like taking extra time and care while washing your face, or making an extra special cup of tea in the evening to wind down. 

Your creative practice. What does creativity mean to you? How would you like to increase, or further incorporate creativity into your day, your week, your month? What do you like about your creative practice? If you don’t already have a creative practice, what do you envision it to look like, in an ‘ideal’ world? What is one step you can take over the next few days/weeks/months to get you closer to that point? 

I wish you luck with continuing to explore ways to take care of yourself and find points of grounding, no matter where you are at today. Remember to be gentle with yourself, and take things one (tiny!) step at a time. Good luck! – Ceci