In Chinese Medicine they believe in living in harmony with the seasons. There are five seasons, winter, spring, summer, late summer and fall. As the seasons change so too should some of our daily habits, in order to create more balance with ourselves and the environment.
Winter in Traditional Chinese Medicine is associated with the kidneys. The kidneys are where the fire is inside us…the source of energy for our entire body. With the colder weather, less daylight and changes in nature around us, it is a time for us to “slow down” and nourish ourselves, both physically and mentally. A time to go inward in order to emerge refreshed and renewed come spring. To learn more click on this link. https://www.chinesemedicineliving.com/nutrition/seasons/winter/
In this winter of 2019 I am finding myself wanting to stop all the external noise and step away, doing some deep refection and soul searching, opening up some pain and sadness that is all too often muffled and silenced by the world around us. And by the “busy” lives we often choose to live in, in order not to stop and listen.
In addition, I’ve felt the need to step away from social media, Facebook and Instagram. It was all consuming for me and keeping me more present in other people’s lives, and less my own. The funny thing I’ve noticed is how “connected” we stay with even our closest friends and family via social media, as since some of my relationships feel almost distant. I can’t blame anyone but myself for that, as I take full responsibility for not making phone calls, coffee or lunch dates or meeting a friend for a workout.
With the days being chilly and sometimes raw, rainy with lack of sunshine, I feel the pull of the season and have chosen to retreat to the comforts of home and my immediate surroundings. Having moved recently to an apartment complex that provides just about everything…. a 7000 square foot gym, a sauna, social activities, walking distance to my yoga studio, supermarket, etc, it’s easy to not “go” anywhere! So, with the season of Winter upon us and my own innate tendencies to be a homebody, I know Spring is right around the corner. With that comes the bright sunshine which I will soak in and relish. The long walks with Oliver, easy runs, Freedom Park workouts, and Al Fresco dining are just on the horizon. And even sooner will be the time change, and that extra hour of light makes all the difference. But for now I will honor my inner voice and make the necessary shifts in accordance with how I feel and be in tune with the season of winter.
Instead of allowing myself to feel limited by the shorter and darker days, I have used this time to expand my creative juices by writing again, reading more, researching some new opportunities, indulging in some marathon Netflix, from documentaries to love stories, and oh my, “Grace & Frankie”, all while wrapped in my cozy blanket with a cup of tea and my sweet Oliver curled up beside me. Our little Ragu, almost 16, sleeps in his warm bed and our sweet Gabby, over 18, curled up in the closet. It’s always interesting how our furry children know exactly what they need as the seasons change.
This season of Winter has taken on a new meaning for me, one of enlightenment and gratitude. Without the changes of the seasons and ultimately the changes we go through in our lives, we cannot fully embrace who we are and who we are evolving to be.