As we move forward into Part 2 of this 4-part series on finding greater balance in our lives, remember that balance is something we glimpse and experience in a variety of ways each and every day. The more we touch the joy of feeling balance in parts of our lives, the more we desire it, and just like developing muscles in fitness, we begin to find our pathways towards this in greater amounts.
Let’s dive into the concept of establishing Daily rituals to help guide us on our Journey thru the Fall Season, and its movement towards Winter, the Season of the Sleepy Bear. In Ayurveda, daily rituals that become positive life enhancing habits are called Dinacharya. A Sanskrit word, Dinacharya is “a concept in Ayurvedic medicine that looks at the cycles of nature and bases daily activities around these cycles. Ayurveda contends that routines help establish balance and that understanding daily cycles are useful for promoting health.” (Wikipedia)
The Fall Season, greater than any of the other Seasons of nature, is best approached by looking at our daily habits and restarting them with renewed vigor and commitment. The reason the Fall Season requires this more than the other Seasons, is it is ruled by the Vata dosha, which is made up of the air and space elements. When we allow these Vata elements to over extend into our lives, imbalance can occur. We may be ungrounded, lacking in focus, with an erratic nervous system. Developing a seasonal routine is always considered a cornerstone to our long-term health and well-being. Vata always requires a sense of positive daily routine in order to create deeper health and vitality. The simplest and most profound practices are to try to do the same things (wake up, exercise, eat meals, go to bed, etc.) at similar times each day. Waking up to sunrise each day, breathing in the morning’s fresh prana, along with its silence, stillness, and peace that are intrinsic to the early morning hours – this simple practice can restore an overly nervous disposition.
From this place of beginning the day consciously, we can seek to establish other daily self-nourishment practices, such as tongue scraping, mouth hygiene, daily exfoliation of the skin with a mitt or brush, and the ancient practice of massaging good warm oil into our skin, especially around the joints. From here a mug of warm water with a squeeze of lime opens our digestive system, while a yoga movement and then meditation practice creates further stability and inner calmness.
Approaching the Fall Season aware of the changes in Nature, as well as ourselves, will help us to know what feels best and creates greater long-term vitality. Consider the terms “warm, stable, heavy, slow, smooth and fluid” when it comes to your lifestyle choices this Fall. Here are a few Ayurvedic tips to support your mind, body and spirit, as you transition into and through the Fall season:
- Go to bed early, with minimal electronics in your room
- Stay warm – especially the top of your head and belly
- Eat warm, moist foods preferably local and seasonal – soups and stews
- Avoid dry, crunchy foods
- Sip on warm water upon waking and throughout the day, avoid iced drinks
- Drink wonderful herbal teas: tulsi, ginger and licorice teas are great choices
- Create movement practices that are slow and mindful. Think Restorative yoga
- Choose calming pranayama techniques, like Alternate Nostril breathing in the am and pm before bed
- Seek to calm the mind thru meditation daily. Consider walking meditation if your mind is overly active
- Seek to create healthy routines with your waking, eating, sleeping, and exercising – at similar times each day.
- Take regular self-care breaks – consider yoga nidra in the afternoon; and step into nature daily.
- Give yourself daily oil massages, after dry brushing your skin each morning
- Use a neti pot then nasya oil afterwards to stay clear and focused
- Consider a warm bath in the morning or before bed, allowing yourself to relax
- Engage in nourishing, loving relationships, moving away from what you know throws you out of balance
- Choose warm, calm, and quiet environments.
- Bring in daily inspiration with readings and music to feed your soul.
Although these techniques may seem simple, they are profound. Developing awareness of your current needs, and adapting to seasonal changes are ancient and profound ways to help make the best choices to stay healthy and balanced. Stepping closer to balance will help you merge with the Fall Season more easily. Please remember, everyone has their own unique constitution and ways of presenting states of balance and imbalance. Consider speaking with a Yoga Therapist or Ayurveda Consultant for a customized routine that takes all of this into consideration. Drop in to my website at MariaAlive.com and learn more about the consultations I offer, in person, or virtually, with a Fall Season Special during the month of October.
“When you do things from your soul, you feel a river moving in you, a joy.” Rumi