What are the chakras and why do they matter? If you are just discovering the chakras, this beginner’s guide to chakras will help you better understand yourself and give you tools to help you live healthier and happier.
There are energy hubs in our bodies known as chakras, which influence our lives. In this beginner’s guide to the chakras, we’ll explain what each energy hub regulates, influences, and how they can help you thrive in the realms of fear, love, trust, connection, and most importantly, how balancing your chakras can help you adventure bigger and more often.
Each of the 7 chakra points, which lie along the spine from tail to crown, rules a different aspect of our lives as well as the physical body surrounding the energy point.
The chakras can be used to resolve physical symptoms like headaches, chronic back pain, and more or we can use them to help us overcome our greater struggles. Unblocking these energy hubs can also help us to live healthier and more fulfilling lives.
A Background on Chakras
The chakras originated from ancient Vedic scriptures dating back to 1500 BC. Despite their ancient existence, chakras are becoming more commonly used in mindfulness practices and even in modernized western yoga.
Additionally, it is said that each of us has a physical body and “pranic” body. You might recognize the word Prana, commonly used in western yoga.
Prana is “life force” and pranayama is breathwork.
Our pranic body is therefore our energetic body and while Prana does run free-flowing throughout the pranic body, these 7 primary chakras are sources of energy, the highest concentration of life force energy.
Each of the 7 chakra points, which lie within us, along the tail to the crown, rules a different aspect of our lives as well as the physical body surrounding the energy point.
Take Our Chakra Quiz To Find Out Which Chakra You Need To Balance?
What Is Chakra Balancing?
The reason we use the term “chakra balancing” is because we don’t want one chakra to dominate our life. For a more fulfilling life, we want to rely on all 7 chakras to guide us in our decisions.
The chakras are energy hubs are like wheels. Our energy is spinning and they can be either underactive or blocked, meaning it’s not spinning enough, or overactive and spinning too fast.
Sometimes we confuse an overactive chakra with a balanced chakra, which isn’t the case. We are striving for balanced use of each energy hub where we are neither neglecting the energy & emotions nor overusing it.
Are Chakras A Religion?
While the chakras can certainly be looked at from a “spiritual” perspective, they are not part of a religious dogma or practice and should only enhance, not conflict, with your own religious practices.
We can use the chakra framework as guiding virtues to heal the primary emotional struggles all humans experience in their lives.
Since the chakras are the actual energetic hubs in our body and emotions literally do cause physical manifestations, we can also use our knowledge of the chakras to improve physical ailments such as low back pain, shoulder pain, headaches.
The physical body is scientifically shown to be an elaborately woven series of electromagnetic field and in our modern society, we’re coming to realize that our emotions and traumas are literally stored in our bodies on a cellular level.
So in a sense, science and spirituality are becoming one and the same.
However you choose to look at the chakras, I hope this beginner overview of what each energy hub influences can provide you insight on where to send more love to in your own body.
Muladhara Chakra – Root Chakra
Location: The base of spine
- Your sense of safety
- Your sense of primal security
- Your ability to adapt, change, and grow
- Your sense of groundedness
The Muladhara Chakra is primarily influence by how safe we feel in terms of primal needs such as food, sleep, shelter, our sense of future security, and acceptance in our family, community, or tribe.
As Rick Hansen explains in The Buddha’s Brain, our brains are wired to do 2 things: focus on threats and hold onto negative emotions.
This was necessary in early humanity, but in modern society, it makes us live in an unnecessary state of fear, especially if we are constantly looking for stability through money or living in a “rat race” mentality, always needing more.
For instance, an imbalance in the root chakra could make us stay at a job we hate in order to have a steady paycheck, instead of pursuing a dream career that we desperately crave.
Symptoms of a blocked Root Chakra:
- panic attacks
- feeling constantly on “high alert”
- wired and tired
- low self esteem
- large desire for affirmation
- difficulty making decisions
- tightness or injury to the legs or knees
- chronic low back pain
- autoimmune issues
How The Root Chakra Can Influence Your Adventure & Travel Mindset
I see this chakra blockage at play when i take someone hiking and they are saying “Be careful” every few minutes to their children.
While we don’t want any harm to come to our kids or anyone else’s children, a balanced root chakra allows us to discern real risk from risk we may be projecting from a deep rooted mistrust of the world, a past trauma, or a programming belief that we haven’t unraveled yet.
A blocked root chakra might also be what is holding you back in deciding to move into an RV or to expand your travel to new destinations and try new adventures.
This certainly has been the case for my husband, Victor. While he doesn’t regret any of the travel we have done, it has been extremely hard for him to relax and enjoy the places we go and the things we do because of an overactive root chakra.
Why You May Want To Balance The Root Chakra
When the root chakra is balanced, we learn to trust that the universe will provide and that there is an abundance of supplies, resources, and opportunities in the world. You’ll feel calm, connected to nature, and feel acceptance for your strengths as well as your weaknesses.
Take our quiz and see if you need to heal your root chakra.
Svadhisthana Chakra – Sacral Chakra
Location: Lower spine, behind the abdomen, and below the navel
- Creativity & fluidity
- One-on-one relationships & intimacy
- Joy & pleasure
The Svadhisthana is our place of creativity, sense of self, and intimacy. It takes the sense of identity and oneness that we discovered in the root chakra and helps us share our gifts with the world.
It’s the place where the self meets the world, where you literally bring your unique self, identity, and thinking into the dynamic, physical space.
It also helps us harness our self-worth and pursue our desires and express our individuality. It’s the green light to live out our greater purpose and let go of control dramas of our past.
The Svadhisthana plays a huge role in our relationships, especially our intimate ones. It allows us to be vulnerable with another person and to give to others without attachment to results.
How The Sacral Chakra Can Influence Your Adventure & Travel Mindset
When we fear judgment from others, we may be less likely to follow our hearts and plan the trips we want. We may worry about what people will think of us if we spend money on travel and don’t have a new car or a big house. Or we may fear that people will think we are “poor” if we live in an RV.
We may commit to too many activities for our kids so that they “fit in” and not spend as much time connecting with them in nature or just allowing time in our schedule for boredom.
Once, I lived amidst affluence, with a grand home, fancy car, and kids in myriad sports, yearning to belong, I silenced my longing for a simpler life. Embracing intuition, tuning out the world, led to reconnecting with my inner self, caring less about external clamor.
Symptoms of a blocked Sacral Chakra:
- Lack of creativity or interest in creativity
- Low self-worth
- Lack of motivation and inspiration
- Addictive behaviors
- Inability to create intimate connections
- Urinary/reproductive issues
- Low libido
- Hormone imbalances
- Hip injuries or tightness
Why You May Want To Balance The Sacral Chakra
Whether you live in a house, an RV, or on another planet, the one thing all humans want is connection and the best way to form deep connections with others is to first form a deep connection to ourselves. When you are aligned with your internal value system, everything around you seems to just fall into place.
Take our quiz and see if you need to heal your sacral chakra.
Manipura Chakra – Solar Plexus Chakra
Location: Behind the upper abdomen, above the navel
- Independence & individuality
- Ambition & Motivation
- Courage & fearlessness
The Manipura Chakra is our “spiritual six pack”. It influences everything related to our ambition and drive and keeps us motivated, disciplined, and makes us take action. It takes the sense of self from the sacral chakra and empowers us to pursue our goals and dreams without fear.
The solar plexus chakra also helps us practice self-care because it establishes healthy boundaries between other people’s needs and our own.
How The Sacral Chakra Can Influence Your Adventure & Travel Mindset
Because sh*t goes wrong. Travel and adventure is not all rainbows and sunshine (although I do love chasing 70!). It can be hard and really puts your Manipura to the test.
Some days the truck doesn’t start, your slide-out breaks, flights are canceled and you have to sleep on an airport floor, kids don’t want to hike to another mountain peak, and your husband doesn’t like driving down dirt roads. Yes, all of this and thousands more things have happened to us through this lifestyle.
Symptoms of a blocked Solar Plexus Chakra:
- Lacking goals or ambition
- Full of dreams without plans
- Feeling stuck or unable to follow through
- Low self-esteem
- Increased need for control
- Increased amounts of guilt
- Trouble letting go of past mistakes
- Issues with gut health
- A superiority complex
- Adrenal issues
Why You May Want To Balance The Sacral Chakra
Because all greatness happens right outside your comfort zone. When your solar plexus is balanced, you have the energy, the mindset, and the confidence to engage in newness. You get to experience all the little things that make life meaningful and you create deeper connections that allow you to move past the superficial world and access the quantum field.
Take our quiz and see if you need to heal your solar plexus chakra.
Anahata Chakra – Heart Chakra
Location: Inside and at the center of the chest; behind the sternum, next door to the heart
- Emotional growth & vulnerability
The Anahata Chakra doesn’t just represent love, it redefines it. The heart chakra encourages us to love without expectation, for the sake of love, and not based on conditions or in hopes of feeding our ego and self worth.
It is also the bridge between the lower 3 chakras, known as the body chakras, and the upper 3 chakras, known as the mind chakras.
How The Heart Chakra Can Influence Your Adventure & Travel Mindset
By opening the heart chakra, you will become better at hearing what your highest self truly desires and be able to create a life in alignment with the whisperings of your heart. Plus, nothing taps into the heart chakra more easily than sitting around a campfire with your loved ones, sharing stories and s’mores, under a star-filled sky. I dare you to try it and not be overflowing with love and joy for the universe & yourself.
Symptoms of a blocked Heart Chakra:
- Feeling a lack of empathy
- Anger, paranoia, & trust issues
- Feeling trapped in an un-loving relationship
- Unable to let go of past wounds
- Weakened immune system
- A sense of loss or grief
- Issues with heart health
- Tightness in chest, shoulders, hands, and arms
Why You May Want To Balance The Heart Chakra
There are many benefits to a balanced heart chakra but from my experience as a coach, the number one reason to balance this is so that you stop self-sacrificing and learn to establish healthy boundaries. It’s great to be kind, but we can’t live a fulfilling life as a martyr.
Take our quiz and see if you need to heal your heart chakra.
Vishudda Chakra – Throat Chakra
Color: Light Blue
Location: The back of the throat
- How you handle conflict
The Vishudda Chakra helps us express our thoughts, feelings, and desires to the world and is greatly influenced by the heart chakra. It also empowers us to speak our truth and maintain a level of respect when listening to other people’s truth.
How The Throat Chakra Can Influence Your Adventure & Travel Mindset
“Where do you want to go this year?” is something I ask my husband every year. “Wherever you are.” is the response I get. While it’s great to be a supportive partner, it’s important to be an active participant in your own life. If you tend to not speak up and make requests, it’s hard for you to fully relax and enjoy your travel and adventure. It makes our travel so much more enjoyable when we both are intentionally heading for the same destination.
Symptoms of a blocked Throat Chakra:
- Difficulty finding the words for what you want to say
- Feeling misunderstood
- Being secretive
- Feeling unworthy of attention
- Feeling unable to connect with people around you
- Excessive hormone fluctuations
- Chronic sore throat
- Neck tension
- Teeth grinding
Why You May Want To Balance The Throat Chakra
The Vishuddha is a reflection of what we think of ourselves and how we value our self-worth and sense of individuality. By balancing it, you access a limitless potential for personal power & authentic connection with others.
Take our quiz and see if you need to heal your throat chakra.
Ajna Chakra – Third Eye Chakra
Color: Dark Blue
Location: Back of the skull behind the forehead
- Pursuit of greater purpose
- Balance between logic & emotions
The Ajna Chakra is your place of Intuition. It bridges the conscious and unconscious mind, giving us the ability to look inward for true wisdom.
When we access the third eye, we exercise discernment, which gives us the ability to see beyond the veil of illusions and past the 5 senses. This powerful chakra connects us to our deeper sense of purpose and allows us to see the bigger picture of life.
How The Third Eye Chakra Can Influence Your Adventure & Travel Mindset
While you can YouTube “How To ____” or Google “Best ___ in ____” for your planning your next itinerary, there’s a beauty to being able to wing it and just experience life in the moment and adapt based on your intuition. This is something I’ve been doing more and more in my travels and it never ceases to amaze me the rad synchronicities that appear when I trust my third eye.
Symptoms of a blocked Third Eye Chakra:
- Feeling a lack of purpose or significance
- Indecisiveness or stagnation in life
- Inability to tap into that “6th sense”
- Lack of creative thoughts
- Hormone issues
- Brain fog or headaches
- Sinus pain
- Issues with pituitary health
Why You May Want To Balance The Third Eye Chakra
A balanced third eye gives us the power to understand ourselves in the context of the collective by giving us the imagination to uncover new realities and trust in our inner wisdom.
Take our quiz and see if you need to heal your third eye chakra.
Sahasrara Chakra – Crown Chakra
Location: Above the head, above the back top of the skull
- Trust in the faith
- Source energy
- Inner peace
- Excited for life
The Sahasrara Chakra hosts your spirituality or your faith in a greater divine power. Call it mystery, meaning, spirituality, divine surrender, inner peace, etc, when we are connected, we feel empathy for the world and a combined life energy that spans all humans.
The crown chakra is where we become our wisest selves and reminds us more than anything, to let go of things we cannot control and to simply see obstacles as places to connect to our higher self to find meaning.
How The Crown Chakra Can Influence Your Adventure & Travel Mindset
Stand on a mountain top and stare off as far as you can at only more and more peaks in the distance and tell me you don’t feel like you are part of something greater than yourself?!!
Symptoms of a blocked Crown Chakra:
- Detachment from concerns or reality
- Excessive or lack of spirituality
- Loneliness & Depression
- Confusion about what to do
- Desire to oversleep
- Poor coordination
- Chronic tension headaches
Why You May Want To Balance The Crown Chakra
By trusting in the divine, we can live in a place of hope, where we can distance ourselves from fear, trust in the collective, and live a life of greater joy and purpose.
Take our quiz and see if you need to heal your crown chakra.
I hope this inspires you to nurture all of your chakras so that you can live a fun & fulfilling life. I use chakra healing a lot in my coaching to help people attain greater health, feel empowered in their life, and to chase passion and purpose.