Now that you’ve contemplated your daily routine, here are some really key pieces to put in place for the fall season:
1. Regular rhythm of waking, exercise (am), mealtimes, and sleep: the nature of vata dosha is mobile and erratic, it lacks stability. We use routine to create stability for the body and the mind so it can thrive.
2. Get plenty of sleep and rest – this is not the season to over work or over do. The summer season, as fun as it is, is depleting. We need to rebuild our resources as we transition into the fall.
3. Lots of oiling the body – skin, ears and nostrils: In order to prevent cold, dryness and roughness from setting into your system, the Ayurvedis recommend self-oil massage w warm sesame or sweet almond oil. The oil keeps us from drying out, it softens us, nourishes us, and is very soothing to the nervous system.
4. Clean your nostrils*: To support your immune system and to keep all sorts of foreign substances from getting into your system, clean out your nostrils using a Neti pot. So helpful! Remember to oil the nostrils after using your neti pot to keep the nose from drying out.
5. Yoga*: Focus on a practice that is warming, stabilizing, and doesn’t push you too hard – remember, this is not the season to overdo (save it for the spring time!). Yoga in heated rooms, gentle rhythmic flow, and steady ujjayi breathing are very helpful.
6. Alternate Nostril Breathing*: This breath calms the nervous system, brings balance to the hemispheres of the brain, and settles a busy mind. The recommendation is to work your way up to 15 minutes daily.
7. Meditation*: The practice of sitting still and connecting with your essence is supportive in all seasons. This is a practice that brings stability to the mind and heart.
*Note: Please learn these techniques from a qualified individual.
And just as there are things to bring into focus and work to implement for the fall, there are also practices to let go of for the fall. These include:
· Dry brushing
· Raw, cold, dry, rough foods
· Cold or iced drinks
· Skipping meals or fasting (avoid)
· Excessive snacking between meals
· Exposure to cold winds and drafts
· Excessive pungent, bitter and astringent
· Late nights
· Excessive sexual activity
· Switching from hot to cold and cold to hot
Some of these you will want to minimize, and some you will want to let go of completely until the seasons change again.
This week’s homework is to keep working on your daily routine – are there some things you want to bring in? How will you do that? Are there some practices you can let go of? Which ones are they?
Enjoy the continued exploration of your daily routine!