Befriending your Nervous System (exercises included)


In today's episode of The Embodied Podcast, I am joined by Amy Morrison.

Amy a Licensed Professional Counselor and Wellness Consultant who specializes in educating others about the nervous system.

When Amy works with her clients, she focuses on a holistic model of health and wellness that integrates breath work, mindfulness, physical fitness, and mental health.

In this episode, we broke down Amy's introduction into the field of therapy, why the breath is so important, what different types of stress exist, trauma, and Amy's course Regulate + Restore.

Amy's new course Regulate + Restore opens for registration this coming Monday August 17th.

Click here to find details about registration!

To listen to today's episode, click here.

"You can be fully in charge of your life only if you can acknowledge the reality of your body, in all its visceral dimensions."

- Bessel van der Kolk


When you can learn to mindfully meet your autonomic nervous system, bring compassion to your embodied experiences, and honor each response that arises, you begin to befriend your nervous system.

Below you will find exercises to help anchor you in a nervous system safety state.

By naming the who's, what's, where's, and when's of your "safety states," you can use this information to ground yourself when you start to feel a pull towards increased activation

(flight or fight or shut down state).

Over time with regular practice, you can use these anchors to increase your capacity to regulate yourself.


The Who's:

  • Reflect on the people in your life that make you feel safe and connected.

  • You can use a person who's literally in your life, or you can imagine a spiritual figure, or even name a pet.

  • You can have different anchors for different states

  • For example: someone/something can serve as your "happy moment" anchor, and another can serve as your "angry moment" anchor.

The What's:

  • Think about what you do that brings you towards your safety state.

  • Look for actions that feel nourishing to you and make you feel connected to yourself.

  • Be aware of moments or micro moments that bring you regulation to safety.

  • For example: my quiet mornings on my deck watching the sunrise with a good book, listening to music

The Where's:

  • Where in your physical world brings you cues of safety.

  • Look around your home, neighborhood, community, or work where you feel a deep spiritual connection.

  • Use your memory to take note of environments and name ones that bring a safe state of being.

  • For example: morning walks in my neighborhood or in my bed

The When's:

  • Identify the moments in time where you felt anchored in safety.

  • Use your memory to revisit your experience and write it in a journal.

  • For example: early mornings, Sunday mornings


Having a variety of different anchors helps us when life hands us overwhelming experiences.

If we know who, when, where and what brings us safety, we can begin to regulate and restore our systems and navigate life in a way that is supportive of your experiences.

To get more information about Nervous System Health, listen to the podcast here.

If you are seeking help navigating this space, please check out our coaching options.


©2019 by Danielle McGinnis.
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