It is during spring that we delight in new beginnings and new possibilities. It is a wonderful time to use this momentum to propel you forward and take action to create what you wish for your life.
Spring is in the air!
Spring is a time of birth, awakening, growth, and renewal. It is a magnificent time to witness nature bursting with new life and vitality. Those things that have been resting over the cold months of the winter are slowly coming back to life… including us! This time of year is comparable to sunrise – the dark of night is now behind us and new beginnings emerge with the increasing light. As the sun intensifies in strength, we too begin to gain momentum and start to feel new life stirring within us.
This year the spring equinox falls on September 23rd. The equinoxes indicate a time of balance, where for a short time day and night are of equal length. Balance is only ever a temporary state and soon the days will become longer than the nights as we continue the cycle of the seasons. Since the winter solstice on June 21st, we have seen our daylight hours increasing daily as we head towards summer once more.
The coldest, darkest, more restful time of the year is now behind us and there is an underlying excitement and joy. As the sun intensifies in strength, you may have the urge to let go of the stillness of winter and get active. It is the perfect time to take action on our ideas and dreams – to plant the seeds for our future harvest. Everything in nature is coming alive and all of life’s energies are moving again after a period of dormancy. It is a time to emerge and move forwards, reaching out for what we want for ourselves.
Spring and Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM)
In TCM spring is associated with the wood element, the colour green, and the liver and gallbladder organs. Physically this influences our tendon flexibility and the health of the eyes. The liver is said to be responsible for the smooth flowing of qi (energy) and blood throughout the body. When the liver functions smoothly, physical and emotional activity throughout the body also run smoothly. When the liver is harmonious, stress or tension is minimal. If the qi stagnates, the body will become sluggish and emotions such as frustration, irritability, impatience, discontent, and indecision can arise.
To keep your mind and body healthy this spring, get your qi moving with brisk walks and gentle stretching activities such as yoga, qi gong, or tai chi. Get out in nature to enjoy the increasing warmth and the joyful bursts of spring colour.
Put some spring in your step!
The appetite eases while the body reduces the need to store energy as it did over the colder months. Spring is the time to lighten up your diet to lighten up your mood. The body will benefit greatly by cutting down on the heavier foods of winter and limiting your intake of salt, fat, and meat. Refined sugar, greasy or highly processed food will tend to weigh the body down. A simple menu of salads, cooked vegetables, and fish or grains is recommended. Raw and sprouted foods can help cleanse and uplift the body, but beware of too much raw food if the body has a tendency towards being cold or damp. A small amount of sour foods (including lemons, limes, and vinegar) can support the liver and aid in movement of qi. Try starting the day with a cup of warm water and some lemon juice. Onion and garlic, plus pungent cooking herbs such as basil, rosemary, fennel, dill, and bay leaf can be a good addition to spring cooking as they can assist with keeping the digestive qi moving.
Spring clean it!
Spring is the ideal time for cleansing and rejuvenating. It is the ascending energy of spring that makes us want to lighten our own load – both physically and mentally. This is the perfect time to take steps to remove any excess waste or stagnancy that has accumulated over the previous months. This applies to any part of your life that could do with clearing – your cupboards, your body, your mind, and your emotions.
On a physical level this could mean taking a dietary cleanse or clearing out some of the clutter in your surrounding environment. Cluttered cupboards often reflect cluttered thoughts. Holding onto things takes energy. It can keep you locked in the past or future and prevent you from fully experiencing all that the present has to offer. By having a clean out (physically, mentally, and emotionally), you lighten your load and create space for the new to enter. If there are areas in your life that are stagnating, this is the time to take action and move forward with renewed energy before it results in frustration.
Seeds are germinating above the ground now and so with us. We feel empowered to take risks, strike out on our own, get on with things and make things happen. In human terms it is a time when the child begins to develop as an individual, independent of its parents, still wide-eyed with wonderment but no longer content just to observe. Now the child is eager to experience and explore all that the world has to offer.
It is during spring that we delight in new beginnings and new possibilities. Everything in nature is opening and bursting with potential. New shoots are rising, trees are blossoming, butterflies are fluttering – there is fresh growth and activity all around! It is a wonderful time to use this momentum to propel you forward and take action to create what you wish for your life. If you have been wanting to begin something new – a new class, a new look, a new relationship – the energies of the earth are naturally supporting you to take the steps you need. Whether you are conscious of it or not, you are part of the cycles of nature and also being influenced by the energies of each season. Spring is the perfect time for exploration, taking action, and making things happen. The increasing energy supports you to create a clearer vision towards your dreams and aspirations, so begin to stretch to those new possibilities that beckon you from the future.
- What do you wish to see bloom in the coming months?
- What beliefs, behaviours, or situations no longer serve you?
- Spring clean your wardrobe and get rid of any items that you don’t wear anymore.
- Set clear intentions for any changes or improvements you would like to see in your life.
- Get your qi moving by going for a brisk walk, riding a bike, or flying a kite.
- Marvel at the magnificence of nature thriving all around you.
- Don’t forget your scarf or something warm – even though we want to embrace the increasing warmth of the sun, the wind can still be fresh and there is a chill in the air.
- Help cleanse your liver by eating smaller meals with a focus on sprouts and fresh greens. Limit dairy, red meat, and greasy and refined foods. Use sour foods and pungent herbs
- Try starting the day with a cup of warm water and some lemon juice.
- Reach for your dreams!
Be conscious of acceptance and gratitude during this season – they will help you adapt to change and recognise that sometimes there is a gift in the unexpected! Allow yourself to remain open physically and emotionally to prevent stagnation of energy and to enable the seeds of change to fully blossom.
“Go confidently in the direction of your dreams. Live the life you have imagined.” [Henry David Thoreau]
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