During winter do you find yourself counting down the days to summer? Or do you relish the crisp, cold, freshness of winter? As someone who would prefer to dodge winter for the tropics, I need to be reminded of what is good about winter.
The cycle of the seasons is an important part of life. Winter is the time of the year where the energies of the earth turn inward, and so does the energies of our body’s. Recognising the natural rhythms of our body and life allows us to nurture ourselves best to really thrive!
Our body goes through cycles too you ask? Indeed is does! In traditional Chinese medicine, winter is the time where our yang energy is at the lowest ebb and our yin energy is highest. Our yang is our active, expressive energy and yin is our more passive, inward energy.
Recognising these subtle, cycles of our body as a reflection of our environment helps us to make better choices in supporting ourselves, mind, body and spirit.
Winter is time for regenerating the body as we slow down, balance and gather our strength for renewal spring. It is an ideal time to nourish our body and support rejuvenation on a deeper level. He are some suggestions on how to nurture yourself this winter:
Slow down: With the shorter days, this often happens naturally. Support this process by making choices to reduce the hecticness in your life, and commit to less in work and socially so you can give yourself more space to slow down for winter
Warming foods such as well-cooked, nourishing soups, casseroles and stews are easy to digest and will keep the cold away. T’is the season for the slow cooker!
Sleep well: Let your body do its rejuvenation work, by simply hibernating and sleeping. Adults need 8 hours a night, regardless of your body type, it is integral to good health and immunity.
Expose yourself to daylight: With shorter, dark days it is too easy to miss daylight entirely! Make a point to schedule in some outside time. Having a walk or either morning tea or lunch in the sunshine. It will feel like a treat!
Eat seasonally: Fresh is best so winter crops are the best choice for us at this time – root veges, ginger, broccoli, cauliflower, green leafy spinach and kale, celery, garlic, apples, citrus, papaya and pears are all readily available.
Keep your body moving: Slower, more gentler exercise may suit us better in winter. Getting into the outdoors can be a great physical and mental boost. Try hiking, biking or beach walks as a fantastic way to take in the winter landscapes and freshness. Rug up and explore!
Soul food: Nurture your mind and soul by staying away from the ‘mental junk’ in social media. Instead, iIncorporate meditation, listen to enlightening podcasts, practice mindfulness or just play an old-fashioned board game with friends or kids!
I hope you feel inspired to enjoy this winter knowing you can look after yourself wellbeing while under those blankets or in your ugg boots.