Fall and winter can be a tough time emotionally for many people. Often more anxiety in the fall, and then depression in the winter. If you fall into the category of either one of these, here are 5 simple (Yoga Body) tips to help you avoid the emotional pitfalls by aligning with the natural rhythms your body is craving.
5 Yoga Body tips to Keep the Winter Blues Away
- Don’t resist the natural “inward energy” of this time of year. What really creates a disharmony is that the holiday season can often increase the demand on your energy, time and attention. Be really choosy. What really feel like the things you WANT to do vs. which things feel like an obligation (i.e. energy drain). It’s definitely important to spend time with friends and family, and bring the “light” of celebration to this dark time of year, but just be choosy.
- “Winterize” your diet. Whether you’re raw, meat eater, vegan . . . it’s time to tune into the season. I’m all for including as much fresh, living food into your diet as possible, but it’s really important to know the most supportive way to do this. I still have my green smoothies and salads in the winter, but I “winterize” them. : ) If you keep eating lighter salads with the usual cucumber and tomato as the weather gets colder, you most likely will start to feel a bit “off” – moody, spacey, ungrounded . . . and then the cravings kick in! LOL. You don’t have to give up your salad, but you do need to “winterize” it. Adding things like raw or roasted root vegetables, bitter winter greens, seasonal foods like cabbages, and warming herbs and spices can make a huge difference. Also some good quality protein and healthy fats can help. Stay tuned on a more detailed post on how to winterize your salad. You can also refer to last year’s post on “How to Winterize Your Smoothie”.
- Get more sleep. Hey, it’s simple, but not always easy. As much as possible slow down, and honor that there is literally more dark time, which for your body means hibernation. Modern society is not set up for honoring the seasonal shifts, I know, but it doesn’t mean you can’t honor it for yourself. And in the process you might just inspire others to do the same! : )
- Try a warm oil massage before your shower or bath. This is a really yummy and nourishing trick from the ancient science of Ayurveda. Traditionally, Ayurveda suggests getting unrefined sesame oil (NOT toasted, preferably organic), but you can always get some kind of delicious body oil that speaks to you. Simply warm the bottle of oil gently in a bowl of warm water and massage the oil into your bare skin from toe to head (or wherever you want to draw the line). I strongly suggest some balancing and/or warming essential oils. Young Living (the only oils I recommend for purity and potency) make some exquisite blends. Valor is wonderful for calming, grounding and uplifting, Sensation awakens the senses and lifts the mood with ylang ylang and jasmine, and Peace & Calming is a personal fave that I apply every night at this time of year. You can set up an account to order by visiting www.YoungLiving.com, and using customer code 904207.
- Do a cleanse. Yup, that always seems to sneak it’s way into my tips, but it really can provide the body, mind and spirit with a re-frame and a fresh start. Spring and Fall are the most important times to cleanse. Once I learned this and began my own twice yearly cleanse rituals, many of my emotional and physical symptoms that I used to experience started to fizzle away. If you feel ready to try one for yourself and would like some support, try the 14-Day Total Body Re-boot & Cleanse program. It’s completely virtual, customizable and can be done from the comfort of your own home. Plus, you get a bonus one-on-one Detox session to fine tune how you can get the most out of the program. Learn more here.
I would love to hear from you! Maybe you have some “winter blues” tips to share, or simply want to share how these tips have helped you. Just leave your comment below.