To make the right choices in life, you have to get in touch with your soul. To do this, you need to experience solitude, which most people are afraid of, because in the silence, you hear the truth and know the solutions.
We are now in the energetic season of “Winter“–until January 17.
Each season of the year brings with it unique sensations and influences us with a distinctive tempo and energy. Although you may not realize it, your body and mind are naturally attuned to an external cycle of growth, ripening, harvest and rest.
With the arrival of spring, you feel renewed and eager to make a fresh start. When summer sun shines you grow more gregarious and lighthearted. When autumn comes, you rededicate yourself to work and get satisfaction from seeing the fruits of your labor. And when the blue silences of winter descend, you may feel quiet and prefer more solitary pursuits. Rhythms of nature affect your mood and your health.
Winter invites us to rest from frantic activity of the other seasons and to reflect on what we have accomplished. This is the season of sleep for the earth and many of its creatures, and it is the season of stillness and rest for us. It is the end of the earth’s fertile period a time to focus inward.
Winter is the season of the feminine. In Chinese medicine, yin is associated with water. Yin energy is at a high tide during the winter.
Serendipitously we are “most” lacking in water for our internal and external system. Here are a few tips for this winter season:
Winter is a time when many people tend to reduce their activity. If that’s true for you, it’s wise to reduce the amount of food you eat, too, to avoid gaining weight unnecessarily. Avoid raw foods during the winter as much as possible, as these tend to cool the body. During winter you should emphasize warming foods:
- Soups and stews
- Root vegetables
- Miso and seaweed
- Garlic and ginger
Eating warm hearty soups, whole grains, and roasted nuts help to warm the body’s core and to keep us nourished. Sleep early, rest well, stay warm, and expend a minimum quantity of energy.
Staying Healthy This Winter
Seasonal changes affect the body’s environment. With the wind, rain, and snow comes the colds, flu, aches, and pains.
Here are a few tips to staying healthy this winter:
- Wash your hands regularly. Studies have shown that one of the main reasons that we catch colds and flu in the winter season is that we are indoors and in closer proximity to others in cold weather. Protect ourselves by washing our hands regularly and try not to touch our face.
- Get plenty of sleep. The ancient Chinese, advised people to go to sleep early and rise late, after the sun’s rays have warmed the atmosphere a bit. This preserves your own yang Qi for the task of warming in the face of cold.
- Reduce stress. Find a way to relax and release stress on a daily basis. Such methods may include massage, Shirodhara, yoga, meditation, hands on therapies or whatever method you use to release the stress and pressures of modern life.
- Increase your Vitamin D. It has been proven that in the Northeast we are not exposed to enough sunlight as needed to keep our Vitamin D levels up. This vitamin is connected to strengthening our immune system.
- Practice prevention but have remedies on hand. We all know that instant of when we are certain a cold or flu is on its way. At that moment, there is help to prevent falling ill. We have supplements that ward of cold and flu, keep them in your cabinet for those moments!