Some of you may be reading this thinking "why would I need to know what the chakras are?" For most of my life, I didn't know what these were, let alone understand the significant role they play. Most people by now have likely heard of chakras, but I find many aren't clear what purpose they have, or how they serve function in our lives.
The word ‘chakra’ comes from the sanskrit word meaning ‘wheel’. The 7 chakras we'll be chatting about in this series are our wheels of energy that run up and down our spine. These energy centers are directly linked to mental, physical, and spiritual well-being. When a certain chakra is out of balance, either overactive or underactive/blocked, we are more prone to physical and psychological ailments. This is why it's important to understand what each chakra is connected to and what we can do to keep our energy flowing freely, in order to feel and be our best.
We'll start from our foundation:
Root Chakra (Muladhara)
represents: being grounded and feeling secure
location: at the base of the spine near the tailbone
The root chakra is all about basic survival needs, security, and stability (e.g., food, shelter or money)
When this chakra is out of balance, you may feel anxious and threatened, and have physical symptoms such as lower back pain.
Sacral Chakra (Svadhishthana)
represents: our connection to others, our ability to accept and embrace new experiences
location: the lower abdomen, slightly below the navel
The sacral chakra is about authenticity, creativity, pleasure, and emotions
When this chakra is out of balance, you may feel uninspired, bored, resistant to change, have addictions, and may physically have issues with the reproductive and urinary systems.
Solar Plexus Chakra (Manipura)
represents: our ability to show up, be confident, and in control of our lives
location: in the upper abdomen in the stomach area
The solar plexus chakra is about power, self-worth, and self-confidence
When this chakra is out of balance, you may have a lack of self trust, low self-esteem, feel overly aggressive or competitive, be rigid and narrow-minded, and physically struggle with digestive issues.
Heart Chakra (Anahata)
represents: our ability to love
location: at the center of our chest in our heart region
The heart chakra is all about.. you guessed it: love! as well as joy and inner peace
When this chakra is out of balance, you may have trust issues around the fear of being hurt, feelings of loneliness, fear of relationships, feelings of being possessive and jealous, or you may be overly empathetic and self sacrificing. This imbalance can lead to physical symptoms such as disorders of the heart, such as high blood pressure, as well as circulation issues and lowered immune system function
Throat Chakra (Vishuddha)
represents: our ability to communicate, listen, express ourselves and our truth
location: at our throat
The throat chakra is about communication: speaking the truth, expressing yourself, and listening
When this chakra is out of balance, you may have suppressed feelings, a fear of expressing yourself, or may talk excessively, gossip, and have trouble listening without the tendency to interrupt. A blocked throat chakra primarily manifests in an inability to say what you want to say. Some physical symptoms that can come from this imbalance are disorders of the throat, ears, voice, or neck
Third Eye Chakra (Ajna)
represents: our ability to see the big picture, the ability to make decisions, intuition, and imagination
location: between our eyebrows, in the middle of the forehead
element: extra-sensory perception, light
The third eye chakra is about intuition, self-expression, imagination, wisdom
When this chakra is out of balance, you may have trouble setting goals for yourself, have a stifled imagination, poor memory and concentration, or difficulty in seeing the future and having faith in your broader purpose. From the physical perspective, this can cause headaches, migraines, neurological disorders, and struggles with mental health
Crown Chakra (Sahasrara)
represents: our ability to be connected spiritually
location: the very top of the head
The crown chakra is about our connection to spirituality and our higher self: our life & our purpose
When this chakra is out of balance, you can feel isolated, disconnected, struggle with trusting the universe, or lack belief in a higher power, and may physically deal with issues such as dementia, autoimmune disorders, or migraines.
For a reference you may be more familiar with, I started off thinking of these in my mind similarly to Maslow's Hierarchy of Needs. When we start viewing ourselves as the energetic beings we are, having this physical experience, big shifts start happening in what we see as true health and healing.
Stay tuned for an in-depth glimpse into each of these chakras, and how to balance them
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