Late Summer- That Season in Between and how to Take Care of Yourself

Late summer. That time between late August and the autumn equinox is an extra season in Chinese medicine. The great yoga instructor leading the class I took while in London was explaining a few things related to this specific time of the year and it reawakened that desire to dig deeper and get curious on the topic of yoga/ seasons and Chinese medicine. The element is earth. It’s a time when fruits and veggies are ripe and it is harvest season. Also a time to slow down and relax after the summer fire energy and before Autumn.

A few days later, back at home, I went to my monthly acupuncture session and he told me my spleen and stomach were a bit struggling- not surprising as it’s the two organs related to this season as well. He did some massages, cupping and put some needles for those two specifically. He asked me if I was overthinking much ... umm yes.

The last few weeks I’ve been feeling a bit overwhelmed, exhausted and my mind on overdrive. Thinking about projects, life and all of the things- like that new year feeling we often have in September with the back to school vibes- which I love! But trying to do all the things after the summer break and juggling a packed schedule, I’ve been too much in my yang energy and I've been left feeling a little ungrounded and heavy. My digestion hasn’t been the best. I've been bloated and swollen. And add the menstrual cycle in the middle of it (hello inner autumn!). I’ve felt a little all over the place. And all those symptoms confirmed what my acupuncturist was saying - that my spleen is indeed imbalanced.

I love that our bodies sync with the seasons and for women, also with the moon. The more I bring awareness and curiosity to how I feel emotionally, physically, mentally and spiritually, the more I understand how my body works, and the more I expand my love and acceptance for all the multifaceted ways I hold within me at different phases. And the more devoted I become to heal and to balance my body and spirit in the best way I can - by being connected to my body, my emotions and my heart so I can recognize the signs and messages my body sends. I see self-care practices as bringing care, attention and love to my body and mental health. To nourish my whole being and to honour all parts of me. Our bodies are full of wisdom. Our bodies are not separate from our thoughts or emotions. It's all part of our whole being.

I am fascinated and passionate about ancient holistic medicines like Chinese medicine and Ayurveda that see the body, mind and spirit as one. When we look at an emotion, organ, life situation or physical imbalance, it is always interconnected with the other ones.

Yoga is a great way to move that energy around to activate the parasympathetic nervous system, to boost the circulation and life force energy (prana / chi) and to reduce stress and bring a sense of relaxation. So I'll make sure that I hop on my mat every day to move and circulate the late summer energy.

Know Your Own Medicine

 

 

What turns you on in life?

 

What makes you feel alive?

 

What shifts your mood and bring your nervous system to restorative mode?

 

The big and little things that makes your heart sing.

 

Do you know what you need to feel rejuvenated, inspired and vibrant?

 

Do you know your own medicine?

 

Pleasure is essential for our wellbeing.

 

Knowing how to recharge our pleasure tank is essential to stay aligned within ourselves, to our physical and mental health, to live a vibrant life.

 

There are health benefits to pleasure. Pleasure shifts our chemistry and the brain release those "feel-good" chemicals: endorphins, oxytocin, serotonin and dopamine which overpower the cortisol (stress hormone). So pleasure brings you health, confidence and allows you to live a turned on life.

 

When we don't fill our pleasure tank, our bodies produce stress hormones, which can increase depression, sadness, anger, loneliness and suppress the immune system.

 

We live in a society that glorifies a busy lifestyle. From working crazy hours, having little sleep, being on the go all the time to giving your time and energy to everyone but you is seen as the normal way. Pause here for a moment and think about how twisted that is.

 

When was the last time you did something just for pleasure?

When was the last time you connected to your environment with your five senses?

 

Get intimate with your self-care practice. We could all benefits from more pleasure in our lives.

 

 

For me, it looks a little like this:

 

♡ Long weekends filled with girlfriends, laughs and soulful conversations.

♡ Summer rain

♡ Welcoming the morning sun.

♡ Wild (naked) swimming in cold turquoise waters.

♡ Hikes in nature and naps.

♡ Reading books on all things women.

♡ Breathing the wild air. 

♡ The smell of pine trees.

♡ Dancing wildly in my room.

♡ That moment you put your feet in the sand for the first time in a while.

♡ The smell and sound of thunderstorms.

♡ Walking barefoot.

♡ Picnics at the park on a balmy summer night.

♡ Cancelled plans and cosy nights in.

♡ Forehead kisses. Puppy kisses.

♡ Spontaneous plans and last minute trips.

♡ Goofing around.

♡ Dancing in the kitchen while cooking. Or in the rain.

♡ Passionately talking about things that make me feel alive.

♡ Writing little notes for people I love.

♡ Big warm hugs

♡ Meeting like-minded souls - the free spirited, the dreamers, the doers, the adventurers, the wild-hearted.

♡ Learning. About yoga, spirituality, the guitar, a new language, health and psychology, all things women.

♡ And about another hundred things that make me feel turned on with life.

 

My favourite healing medicine is jumping into the sea. Washing away the sadness, the old stories and stagnant energy. I feel cleansed, every time. When you connect with nature - it’s like you get stripped with the essential. You and nature. No room for worries, problems, questions. Everything seems so much clearer. Going head first in the clear turquoise water, salty hair, sun-kissed skin. In union with Mama Earth. 

 

 

"Just as a seed needs soil, sun, and water in order to grow, your appetite requires a support system to really spring to life. The best fertilizers you can find for your sprouting desires are fun and pleasure- they are all-natural and you can never have too much of them, so sprinkle them daily throughout your life."

Regena Thomashauer

 

 

Make a list of 20 things that bring you pleasure. And keep adding to it. Go to a hundred.

 

Make pleasure and joy at the core of your life. And see how it boosts your confidence, self-esteem, mindfulness, lifestyle and relationships.

 

I've created The Women Series to connect and celebrate our womanhood. If you want to bring more pleasure and awaken to a new sense of confidence and joy within your body, I am hosting "Embrace your menstrual & lunar cycle" on Sunday May 27th. More info here.

Winter Energy

 

I love the connection with the seasons. Every season, I realize a bit more the meaning and goodness of each one and its impact on my body and soul.

Winter has a purpose.

For me winter is filled with gezellig- hygge vibes. That warmth and cosiness contrasting with the temperatures outside. You get to flow between the two worlds.

I haven't felt that big high of new year energy in January. Usually September "back to school vibe" does it more for me. Feeling recharged and fired up after summer. I've been trying to map out the year and plan and I just haven't felt connected to this energy of getting things done and moving forward in a more masculine energy.

So I decided to let go of what I thought I should be doing and instead listen to my intuition and heart's desires. My soul knows better. I love embracing winter and it's yin energy. So lots of cosy times filled with self care, creative projects, reading books, and just a general sense of living in the now. Being more in tuned with my heart than my brain. Sometimes, you need to give yourself time to retreat so you can bloom later on. Making memories and filling my heart with joy. Because in the end, that's what we'll remember. Play time and adventures taking the front seat. Sitting in front of my laptop trying to be creative and inspired wasn't really working for me the past few weeks. So I started looking for the spark of inspiration and creativity in other places- the ones that come with more ease and exploring new ones.

So I filled my days with lots of yin and some yang energy, finding a balance that works for me.

Snow adventures bring me exactly what I need from a more active energy. Meetings with the sun and blue skies after days under the clouds. It's never really a question of grey days - but just being at the wrong altitude. So whenever I can, I take steps to hit the road for the wild snow capped mountains. Such a magical moment when you suddenly find yourself out of the heavy fog and into a winter wonderland of blue and white on the horizon. Breathing the wild air and that feeling of immensity surrounded by majestic mountain peaks. It's my zone of bliss and inspiration. It's how I recharge. I've given myself permission for just that. For play and gathering experiences. Embracing winter.

Sometimes you have to slow down, stand still to listen and receive the guidance, flow and vibrations. When you get to that place, you'll be surprised at how things come your way because your energy shifted big time. I've been noticing the positive change.

Let yourself be lead by your soul. Treasure the seasons and experiences.

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What is one thing that hasn't been working for you?

How can you embrace winter and it's energy?

Are you feeling aligned with your heart?

 

 

Keeping the Adventurous Vibe

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“The purpose of life is to live it, to taste experience to the utmost, to reach out eagerly and without fear for newer and richer experience.”

Eleanor Roosevelt

Seek wild adventures.

Keeping that sense of freedom, adventure, excitement we have when we travel is not always a sure thing when we get back home to our routines. We all get really inspired when we wander the world, discover new places, new ways of living and meet people along the way. There's something magical in exploring the world. The vibe is high. We experience a rush of intense emotions, we push our boundaries, our days are driven by curiosity.

How do we keep the high of freedom, creativity and inspiration that flows through our heart when we're back home? Even though you think travel or moving to a more vibrant place will change the way you live, you can still get that feeling anywhere.

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5 WAYS TO ADD MORE ADVENTURE , FREEDOM AND INSPIRATION INTO YOUR DAILY LIFE:

 

 

1. Identify Your Feelings

First step is to get clear on how you want to feel. What is it that you're after when you seek adventure? Do you want to feel free, creative, bold, connected, energized or inspired? Take a moment to think about your high on life memories. Everyone has a different definition of what adventure and excitement entails. When do you feel most joyful and alive? It's not so much about the destination but the feeling you want from that experience. How can you recreate that vibe in your daily life?

 

2. Beginner's Mind

Adventure starts the moment you can see and experience the world with wonder and awe. Shifting your mindset and making an effort to see your life with new eyes. Setting an intention each day to be present and look for the wild in the ordinary. If you spend time with kids, you'll realize how every new experience is kind of magical- from feeling the rain on their skin to riding a bike. It's easy to be amazed while on the road but finding beauty and excitement in your daily life takes more practice, but can be as enjoyable. Make space for the unknown and novelty.

 

3. Make a List

Make a list of all the things you'd always wanted to do or experience and find ways to incorporate some of them in your current life. Get creative and playful. You may not be able to wander for the next 6 months but there's plenty to do around if you're willing to use your imagination. Make new friends, host dinners at home, take a dance class, try a new sport. Capture your city vibe through your camera lens. Move your body and set the goal to hit your daily 10'000 steps. Experiment in your kitchen. Go to the farmer's market. Be of service. Give your time and add random acts of kindness to your week. Expand your horizon. There's a million different ways to add a bit of spice to your life. Outdoor activities will boost your energy and vibe just by being in the wild air.

 

4. Spend Time on Your Own

It's a very liberating feeling- doing things you like without needing anyone to be with you to enjoy a moment. From concerts to snowboarding, an afternoon in nature or having a lunch date with yourself. It's often things we do while adventuring the world but when back home, the free spirit goes back to being quiet. You can still get lost in your city, find new scenic routes, explore hidden treasures, pause to enjoy the view. Read and learn about a new subject or skill. Shake up your morning routine. Find yourself.

 

5. Plan Mini Adventures

Be spontaneous and try something new. Go on a road trip. Sleep outside. Spend time by the sea or mountains. Look at the stars. Organize sunset picnic dinners. Say yes. Find other wild souls as being surrounded with the adventurous one will automatically bring fun to your weekends. Wake up for sunrise. Do more of what makes you happy and less of what brings you down.

 

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Adventure is an attitude more than a place. We create our lives and decide how we want to spend our days. Start with small changes that will create momentum and excitement.

 

Seek what makes you come alive. Seek what lights you up.

 

Let me know in the comments below how you can add some wild vibes to your life!

 

Staying Grounded in the Middle of a Storm

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Storms and crisis situations are always different for each of us and come in different shapes and sizes. It could be one hectic day or it could last for weeks or months of intense and soul crushing vibes. You may have to find a new normal for a little while. From health issues, family crisis, financial struggles or any other life events, it happens to all of us at some point. Maybe you're going through a hard time at the moment or someone close to you is.

 

Here are 5 ways to stay grounded when stormy times come:

SELF-CARE

Being gentle and kind towards yourself is essential. It may be hard to squeeze some time for yourself in the midst of chaos or you might feel guilty but you'll need it for your wellbeing and being able to keep going for the long-run, if needed. Think a good night sleep, a relaxing bath, booking a massage, a quiet evening of doing absolutely nothing, coffee with a friend, a walk in nature or feeling the sun on your face. It doesn't have to be big or take long. It's more about incorporating small windows of time for yourself where you can switch off, breathe and recharge your energy. From 5 minutes to a whole day.

 

NOURISH

In order to keep your wellbeing, be present, and give to others, you need to have your tank filled. Nourishing your body but also your mind and soul. From nourishing meals to a warm hug from a friend. A 15 minute nap or 5 minute meditation, a walk around the block, taking 10 deep breaths. We usually can't keep up with our healthy routines, so find ways to keep a mini version of it. Journalling and writing down your thoughts, emotions and everything in between is a good way to process whatever is happening to you and a way to release the million thoughts in your mind. If you have the opportunity, take a day off. Drinking water and keeping your body hydrated. Sunshine on your face. It's the simple things that warms your heart.

 

REACH OUT

Go to your tribe. The ones who will be there for you, who will listen and create space for you to express your emotions and feelings. Seek support and ask for help. Go to your acupuncturist, kinesiologist, coach or what you're into to talk to and find some balance in your body.

 

LIFT YOUR HEART

It might be going to a yoga class or just taking time to do a little dance session in your kitchen or anything that will bring you a breath of fresh air from what is happening at the moment. Movement and connecting to your body will create some space and more flow in your energy and release some of the stress and tension stored in your body. Shaking up your body is also a really good way to let go of the fears and anxiety. Put your favorite music on, close your eyes and let your body move and shake. Shaking up helps get rid of headaches and heavy energy and can do wonders.

 

ACCEPTANCE

Accepting our emotions, putting names on what we are feeling at the moment. Trying to stay present - breathing techniques and meditation can help to stay in the now. Resistance will only bring more anxiety and stress to the situation. Remember that the storm will pass. Finding some gratitude in the midst of a chaotic time- even the tiniest thing will do. It's not about forcing positive vibes as it doesn't work and just puts a bandaid on the wound. Accepting where we are right now and allowing the emotions that come with it.

Sending you much love.