This is the second part of the series of three articles where I have partnered with Pukka Herbs to guide you through the benefits of an Ayuredic lifestyle, easy habit swops and tips on how to maintain the new changes.
Nearly everywhere we look in nature, there are creatures engaging in some sort of consistent daily routine. The natural world at large is deeply influenced by the rhythms of nature – the rising and setting of the sun, the cycles of the seasons, and the underlying impulses directing the broader community of life.
While there is often some degree of seasonal variation, many plants and animals embrace a predictable daily rhythm and, as a rule or instinct, live by it. As humans, we have largely gotten away from this habit. Modern forms of electricity allow us to heat and cool our homes and businesses, light the darkness, and engage with life at all hours of the day and night, including the high paced lifestyles with little sleep, processed food and increased stress levels. It is no wonder that so many of our nervous systems now exist in a chronic state of high alert – hyper-vigilant, increasingly unable to relax.
Having a daily routine offers the grounding, stability, and predictability that are largely absent from our hectic modern lives. The routine itself creates a number of familiar and comforting reference points throughout each day that send a resounding affirmation to the deep tissues of the body that all is well, that we can be at ease. And so, when the body becomes accustomed to – and learns to count on – a daily routine that includes things like adequate rest, appropriate exercise, and a nourishing spiritual practice, the nervous system can finally begin to relax. As a result, a daily routine can obtain profound rejuvenation throughout the body without requiring any conscious awareness of the healing process. Each day, our routines provide us with a tangible opportunity to prioritise our own health and wellbeing.
Some aspects of an Ayurvedic daily routine are very quick and easy to incorporate into your day, regardless of your schedule. Other practices require some concerted effort and a strong level of commitment. If establishing a daily routine is entirely new to you – and even if it isn’t – it’s important not to get overwhelmed. As you can imagine, taking on too much too soon tends to cause more stress than it relieves, so it’s important to not get overwhelmed. No matter how appealing each practice may sound, it is far more important to be able to stick to your commitments consistently than to try to do everything. Start with just 1-3 substantial new additions to your day, and add one new every 4th week.
Asked to name the seasons, hardly any of us in the West would stop at three, unless, of course, we were thinking in ayurvedic terms: three doshas, three seasons, right? Makes perfect sense if we remember that the doshas—Vata, Pitta, and Kapha—govern not only our own constitution, but everything else in the universe, as well. So instead of winter, spring, summer, and fall, the year breaks into Vata season, which goes from late fall into early winter; Kapha season, from the coldest part of winter into spring; and pitta season, which includes the hottest, longest days of the year—from late spring into early fall.
Understanding the qualities of each of these seasons can help you reduce any adverse effects. Remember that your predominant dosha increases during the season it governs, so take care to choose foods and activities that will pacify and not aggravate it.
Kapha season extends from frigid winter days, when the ground freezes solid, to mud-luscious early spring, when the snow melts, the sap rises, and the first tentative shoots break through the ground. These conditions disturb Kapha dosha’s heavy, dense, wet, gooey, stable, cool qualities.
6 Daily habits for Kapha Season:
1. Wake up with the birds
Do things that get you up and out of the house - early. Have you ever slept late in the morning, only to wake up feeling duller and more exhausted than before? Sleeping during the Kapha time of the morning. Get up before Kapha time (6 a.m. to 10 a.m.), and get in some exercise such as bike riding, walking, or other light aerobic activity.
2. Get moving
One of the best ways to counter the slow, sluggish feeling of Kapha imbalance is to get moving, and then get moving faster. Research shows that aerobic activities such as swimming, running, and hiking are good for the brain as well as the body. It’s better to exercise for half an hour every day rather than an hour three times a week. When you exercise every day, your digestion stays on and the pounds stay off.
3. Go to bed early
If you climb into bed well before 10:00 p.m., during the Kapha time of night, your sleep will be deep and restful. New research shows that people who get a balanced amount of sleep have more control over their weight, mood and decision making. Enjoy a warming and relaxing cup of Pukka Herbs Relax tea in the evening, to prepare your body for a deep and restful sleep.
4. Switch up your diet
Turn to foods that are lighter, drier, pungent, and warming. As soon as they’re available, eat the first bounty of the season such as sprouts, berries, dandelion and other spring greens which naturally support this time of cleansing. And stick to three meals a day to avoid overindulging.
5. Seasonal detox
Did you know that your energy may be more easily disturbed during the weeks between the seasons? Consider doing a seasonal detox with such as Pukka Herbs Clean Greens supplements to remove the buildup of elements from one season before moving into the next.
6. Spice it up
Add more spice to your food to power up digestion. Try cooking with fresh ginger, cumin, peppercorns and fennel – or Pukka Herbs’ tea such as Turmeric Gold, Detox, Three Fennel or Lemongrass & Ginger. Spice up your daily routine a little too. Try a new activity, meet new people to stimulate your brain and your spirits. Remember that because one of the qualities of Kapha is stability, the healthy habits you form this spring can stick with you all year ’round.
Having a daily routine offers the grounding, stability, and predictability that are largely absent from our hectic modern lives. The routine itself creates a number of familiar and comforting reference points throughout each day that send a resounding affirmation to the deep tissues of the body that all is well, that we can be at ease. The following article will guide you through how to easier maintain new habits.