The Transformative Power of Spring
My favorite spring flower is the ranunculus!
Ever since I’ve been a student of Ayurveda, I’ve begun paying more attention to the nuances of the seasons. It has changed my life so profoundly that frankly, I want everyone else to jump on board! Just the simple act of aligning with Mother Nature can reverse health issues, balance relationships, combat depression and anxiety, and help us lead a more purposeful life.
I’ve always enjoyed living where there are four seasons. And although I don’t do well in either really cold or blistering hot weather, there are elements of each season that I love. Just a month ago I was still in hibernating mode and actually dreading spring. I wanted to stay in my cocoon. But I feel the movement within myself just as the rest of nature is waking and about to bloom. I sense myself shifting into a place of creativity and rebirthing in many different ways. How about you?
The word April in fact means to open or to blossom. It is the spring month of buds bursting open, a sense of renewal, and hope for the future. It’s a time for transition, change, and clearing out what no longer serves us. It’s no coincidence that spring cleaning exists.
Why then does everyone seem to be down in the dumps? We had a particularly gloomy, cold March here in NYC and only recently has the sun begun peaking out. It’s still Kapha season which I wrote about last month, and if you’ll recall, depression is often the result of unbalanced Kapha. Even if it’s not your primary dosha, you can easily feel the effects of excess Kapha.
Remember the saying April showers bring May flowers? Water is one of Kaphas main elements (the other being earth) and too much rain or damp weather can result in unbalancing that dosha and making us want to dive back under the covers. Don’t do it! If ever there is a time to nudge ourselves forward a bit, it’s in the spring.
If you find that you’re flip-flopping between withdrawal and motivation, depression and joy, acknowledge whatever it is you’re feeling. And then try your best to release it. It can be a slow and painful transition for many of us, so here are some tips to help you move through this difficult time away from feeling stuck and towards transformation:
- Express your feelings, be it through journaling or talking it out with a friend.
- Breathe through it. I mean deep, conscious breathing. Every day.
- Be mindful of eating healthy foods and drinking adequate amounts of water.
- Get enough sleep, but try to rise by 6:00 am. You will feel more rested and less lethargic.
- Get out in the sunshine for at least 1/2 hour every day.
- Exercise. It doesn’t have to be excessive. Click here for some dosha-specific recommendations.
- Meditate. It’s one of the most transformational tools you will find.
- Let nature work its magic on you! Go for a walk in nature without your phone or your iPod. Listen to the sounds and look for signs of budding life. Everything on this planet is made from the same five elements-ether, air, fire, water and earth. As you look around, notice similarities between yourself and Mother Nature.
- Spring clean your surrounding as well as your body, mind and spirit. Who doesn’t love the feeling of lightening your load?
- Consider a gentle detox or cleanse to get your body back on track. A good cleanse will also help to eliminate emotional toxins which can remain hidden in the body for decades. It can help with allergies, weight gain from the winter months as well as cravings and addictions.
- Pay attention to synchronicity in your life (there are no coincidences). See it as a sign to guide you in the right direction.
- Do what you love! Even if you can’t make your passion your job at this time, be conscious of what makes you excited to get out of bed every day and do it as much as possible.
April is also the month of Venus, the goddess of LOVE. It’s a good time of year to spring clean your relationships as well. Nurture the ones that are serving you and kindly let go of those that are not. Most importantly, nurture your relationship with yourself.
I hope some of these suggestions will help ease you out of hibernation and nudge you towards joyful creation and transformation!
P.S. On a sad note, one of the kindest souls I’ve ever met left the planet this past weekend. My dear friend, David Howell was a quiet, humble, loving man who made friends quicker than anyone I’ve ever known. He was a talented artist – a composer, woodworker and a beautiful writer. Everything David did came from his heart. I found a kindred spirit in him with our love for nature. His spirituality was deep and I have no doubt he left this earth filled with the light that he shared with so many of his friends. I am blessed to have been one of them.
As synchronicity would have it, I found this original composition of David’s that he shared with me last year. How fitting that the title is “Spring Awakens“! It makes me a bit sad that the world never got to hear his music while he was still alive. He had plans for that…Here it is – I hope you enjoy it and can feel the promise of Spring in David’s music.
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