Haha! Got your attention, didn't I? How do you know when your chakras are out of whack? What happens when they are? What even ARE chakras?
Seven Chakra System
For those who are new to chakras, allow me to introduce you to the seven chakra system. Chakra means wheel or disk, and you've probably heard all about them in a yoga class or maybe even in a meditation context (it depends on the modality). In these contexts, chakra refers to wheels of energy in the body, most of which run along the spine. These spinning wheels all have their own color and spin on their own and together with the other chakras. When I work to clear my chakras, I visualize spinning disks that each glow with their own color.
The bottom chakras are commonly referred to as physical chakras. They are the energy centers of the physical body: root, sacral, and solar plexus.
Sanskrit Name: Muladhara
Location: Base of Spine
Feeling anxious, ungrounded, or flighty? Chances are your root chakra is out of whack. This red chakra connects us with the earth and when it's open and spinning beautifully, you feel safe and secure. Much like a tree whose roots extend into the ground and provide stability, the root chakra provides stability to your body.
Sanskrit Name: Svadhishthana
Location: Lower Abdomen/2 Inches Below Navel
The sacral chakra is our sexuality and creativity center. Find yourself in co-dependent relationships? Hot tempered? Overindulgent in fantasies or you have a lack of sexual desire? Your sacral chakra may be out of whack since this center is associated with emotions, sensual expression, and creativity.
Solar Plexus Chakra
Sanskrit Name: Manipura
Location: Upper Abdomen
Your gut. The center of your power. Your inner warrior. The solar plexus chakra is located about where your navel is and is said to be responsible for your sense of your own power. It almost goes without saying, then, that if this chakra is out of whack, you might feel self-conscious, and your self-esteem might be suffering. Feel out of control? It can't hurt to nurture your solar plexus.
Sanskrit Name: Anahata
Location: Center of Chest over Sternum
The heart chakra is one of my favorites - it's the bridge between the body and the spirit. It is believed that an underactive heart chakra - often the result of heartbreak or grief - is connected to a loss of intimacy and connection with other people. An overactive heart chakra is correlated with upper respiratory issues, heart problems, and feelings of too much empathy.
Sanskrit Name: Vishuddha
Location: Hollow of the Throat between Collar Bones
Speaking your truth and communicating with others are the two most important roles of the throat chakra. If this chakra is out of whack, you might experience cold sores, throat issues, or cavities. Personally, I can tell when my throat chakra is out of whack when my voice falters or my throat closes up. After a quick clearing, my voice comes back and I can communicate properly again.
Third Eye Chakra
Sanskrit Name: Ajna
Location: Forehead between the Eyes
The third eye chakra contributes to harmony between ourselves and the spiritual world around us. When it's underactive, though, we can feel a disconnection from otherwise spiritual experiences. If you have sinus issues or headaches, check in with your third eye chakra - balancing it might help!
Sanskrit Name: Sahasrara
Location: Top of Head
Finally, the crown chakra is said to govern our spiritual selves. If you feel yourself becoming addicted to spiritual experiences - especially at the detriment of more grounded experiences - check in with your crown. It might be overactive.
Want to learn more about the chakras? This is the first post in a series targeted at boosting your chakra wellness and understanding these fascinating energy centers in your body.