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What Are The 7 Chakras? And, How Do They Affect You?

what are the 7 chakras?

Now, keep reading because I’m going to break down what each chakra is responsible for and its characteristics.

Do you ever feel stuck or like something is slightly off, but you just can’t put your finger on it? Have you had physical symptoms that seem to not be fixable with a physical cure? Or do you ever find yourself thinking that the only real block you have to get what you want out of life is something within yourself?

If you answered yes to any of those questions, one or more of your chakras might be off balance. While there’s been a ton of buzz around chakras and energy healing lately, you may still be wondering what a chakra is.

What Is A Chakra

In Sanskrit, the word “chakra” translates literally into “wheel” or “circle.” Each of us has seven main chakras that run from the base of our spines to the crown of our heads. Think of them as your energy centers.

To visualize this, think of each of these chakras as connected wheels. Then think of the breath you take in, otherwise known as prana (a life-giving force), flowing through your body. Now, imagine if one or more of these wheels stops working or is backed up with too much energy.

If a specific chakra, or a particular wheel, is too open/closed or spinning too fast/slow then that means your chakra is off balance. If this is the case, you might feel out of whack physically, spiritually, and emotionally because all of these wheels are connected.

On the other hand, if all of your chakras are open and prana is running smoothly through you, then you’re likely living a well-balanced and harmonious life.

So why exactly should you care about chakras? Because the more balanced you keep your chakras, the better equipped you are to be your best self, live your best life, and manifest your desires. Let’s explore each of these chakras, one by one.

1. Root Chakra - Muladhara

image: courtesy chakra anatomy

image: courtesy chakra anatomy

This chakra symbolizes our fundamental needs in life such as shelter, safety, security, family, food and water. This chakra is all about grounding and the elements needed for survival.

  • Color: Red

  • Location: Base of spine

  • Element: Earth

  • Mantra: LAM

2. Sacral Chakra - Svadishthana

image: courtesy chakra anatomy

image: courtesy chakra anatomy

This chakra is a sexy chakra; it represents our sexuality, creativity, and how in tune we are with our innermost selves as well as others.

  • Color: Orange

  • Location: Lower abdomen

  • Element: Water

  • Mantra: VAM

3. Solar Plexus Chakra - Manipura

image: courtesy chakra anatomy

image: courtesy chakra anatomy

This chakra manages our self-esteem, self-confidence, personal power, and identity. This chakra is where our motivation and a sense of purpose manifests.

  • Color: Yellow

  • Location: Solar plexus

  • Element: Fire

  • Mantra: RAM

4. Heart Chakra - Anahata

image: courtesy chakra anatomy

image: courtesy chakra anatomy

The heart chakra, of course, represents everything that has to do with love, joy, relationships, and compassion, in addition to housing our ability to accept and forgive. Anahata is my favorite chakra and also the one I have to work on the most.

  • Color: Green

  • Location: Heart

  • Element: Air

  • Mantra: YUM

5. Throat Chakra - Vishuddhi

image: courtesy chakra anatomy

image: courtesy chakra anatomy

This chakra is all about speaking your truth, using your voice, and expressing your ideas while also balancing listening to the views of others. The throat chakra is all about communication.

  • Color: Blue

  • Location: Throat

  • Element: Space

  • Mantra: HUM

Side note: the first four chakras are known as the lower chakras, and this is the first of the three more spiritual chakras.

6. Third-Eye Chakra - Ajna

image: courtesy chakra anatomy

image: courtesy chakra anatomy

This chakra releases your sixth sense and guides your intuition. How you perceive the world extends from this chakra and is the guiding force to your inner dialogue.

  • Color: Indigo

  • Location: Between brows

  • Element: Light

  • Mantra: SHAM

7. Crown Chakra - Sahasrara

image: courtesy chakra anatomy

image: courtesy chakra anatomy

This chakra is the most spiritual chakra of the seven; it’s the source of enlightenment and spiritual connection to the universe. This chakra is used to connect to our higher selves and transcend the physical world.

  • Color: Violet

  • Location: Top of head

  • Element: Cosmic energy

  • Mantra: OM

Do you think one or more of your chakras are off-balance? Stay tuned for part two of this post on how to tell if each chakra is working correctly and the practices to balance each one. In the meantime, try this 7-day challenge for a full chakra reset!