When I look out the windows of my home spring has exploded into blossoming trees, flowering bulbs, and bright green tips of shrubs and evergreens. This time of year that the Chinese refer to as the wood element is reflected in the stems of plants bursting upward from quiet, underground winter rest. This can be quite the shock to our systems. The beauty of Chinese wisdom is in seeing the reflections in our mind/body/ spirit with changes of the season’s. For example spring, has meridians (pathways of life force ), a time of day (11pm-3am), colors (green for spring of course) a flavor that strengthen (sour), emotions (anger and frustration) and climate (wind) that are primary during it’s special segment of the year. The liver and gallbladder meridians are most activated during spring and I’ve been hearing folks at every turn this week talk about feeling nauseated. This is what happens when there is some stagnant energy that is trying to move when spring erupts. This fast uprising of spring energy can also lead to headaches, PMS, cramps and frustration and difficulty making decisions. I notice that pets also suddenly get crazy bursts of energy when spring comes. So how can we assist ourselves with a smooth transition for this exciting seaso
1. Feast on Green:
Take time to let your eyes, which are the sensory organ of spring, soak up the various shades of green that are present outdoors. Eat lots of fresh greens in salads and cooked with apple cider vinegar or citrus dressings. This sour flavor (which strengthens the liver and gallbladder) breaks down greens and helps to make the minerals more available to us. The sour flavor can soften the bitterness of greens as well.
2. Sour Power:
Since sour flavor strengthens liver and gallbladder function, spring is an especially wonderful time to incorporate more fermented foods such as sauerkraut and cultured veggies into your meals. If you tolerate cow or goat dairy, homemade yogurt and kefir are easy to make and slowly add to your diet. When we ferment our own foods (such as yogurt and kefir) we can get up to 7 times the probiotic benefits by maximizing fermentation times such as 24 hour yogurt.For directions for making your own Milk Kefir , Yogurt and Sauerkraut follow these links.
3. Move the Sludge:
Look to see if you are struggling in any area of your life to get moving and address it before it becomes an obstacle to life.
A. If you feel physically nauseated, have headaches or constipation you might consider a spring cleansing diet of increased veggie juices and non-starchy vegetables, good fats (I suggest, olive and coconut oil, ghee or butter) and eliminating flour, grains, sweeteners, dairy, alcohol and starchy vegetables.
B. Sleep long and deep to make extra time for dreaming which is governed by the liver.
C. Clean out you house of any objects that don’t enliven you when you see them to make space for this upcoming season of growth.
D. Find safe ways (no injury to self or others) to express your frustrations by journaling, beating the bed with a tennis racket or fists and feet, screaming in the car or conversations where you make requests for getting your needs met.
E. Move in quick percussive motions like kick-boxing, racket sports, karate, digging the ground, chopping wood. This type of movement is especially helpful for breaking up stagnant energy in our body and emotions that mirrors the hard ground after a long winter.
4. Sit on a Mountain-Top for Perspective.
The spirit level of spring is vision, dreaming, creativity and perspective and decision-making. It is our ability to project into the future and plan. Since this is the beginning of the growing season you may want to dream about where you are headed and whether you feel the call in your heart guiding you toward decision making about new learning, locations, people or creative projects.
Enjoy the momentum of this wonderfully energetic season to fulfill your dreams.