5-ElementsLifestyleSleep-Health-Energy

What does your Stomach, Late Summer and Sleep have in common?

2 insights why knowing this can boost your health & and your business 

 

“I am sure that an unhappy stomach, constricted and uneasy with worry, cannot digest properly.”   adapted from Julia Childs

 

The fundamental principles of the 5 seasons concept include 5 elements and 5 major organs associated with each season. Remember that Late Summer is represented by the Earth element, the stable center of all our environment and the idea of centering our body but also our mind, emotions and spirit so we can function at our highest potential. The physical center of our body is our digestive system, in particular our stomach, spleen and pancreas.

Recognizing that many of us may have forgotten our intimate connection to nature, I’d like to share some thoughts, connect the dots and most importantly, ask for your feedback. The insights below may be familiar (and more detail will follow in the future) and come from spiritual leaders (Louise Hay), Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM) and even one of my fav Sleep and Dream psychologists (Dr. Rubin Naiman).

 

“A man must not swallow more beliefs than he can digest.”   Havelock Ellis

 

 Insight 1  “sight with the ‘eyes’ of the mind”

 We are NOT what we eat!

We are what we digest! Our stomach digests not only food but on another level, also new ideas & experiences. If you recall when flying was a new idea, there were vomit bags because it was a ‘thing’ that people got sick on flights.

We’ve since ‘assimilated’ the idea of flying, vomit bags now are hardly used. Some believe that stomach problems represent the idea that we don’t know how to assimilate new experiences or maybe have fears about new things, change and transition, it’s reflected in our language and expressions. If you cannot ‘stomach something’, you cannot bear to do it or deal with it. How often have you said that?

The 5th season is the center of all the other seasons, represents the energy of transition as well as being your energetic center connecting everything mind, body, spirit! Tap into this energy and prepare for the falling energy of Autumn and Winter by eating foods that provides stability, strength and helps ‘ground’ us.

 

  • Eat fresh, nourishing foods especially root vegetables such as carrots (my nephew above loves), beets and squashes. Discover the abundance of Late Summer by trying your local farmer’s market for fresh, local and seasonal foods. Organic preferred of course!

 

  • Be moderate with sugar, greasy fried foods, and dairy, all of which are taxing to the spleen. Instead, try ‘sweet’ foods such as seasonal plums, apples, cherries and melons. Notice how you feel. Sweet is the ‘taste’ of Late Summer in TCM.

 

  • Take a break from ‘raw’ and try lightly cooking your food which will be easier on your digestive system especially if you are having any kind of stomach trouble. My fav technique with our garden French greens beans is to blanch in hot water for a few minutes, dip in ice cold water and serve with my very fresh, Salade Niçoise.

 

  • Get some exercise or Tai Chi & Qigong! Late Summer walks in the cooler mornings and evenings helps sharpen your mind and supports the idea of transition. Experience every shade of yellow, the color of Late Summer, such as leaves, flowers, fruit & veggies and bring that literally and energetically into your home and work environment. My fav, Qigong exercises specific to the season.

 

  • Nourish your mind and spirit with positive people, your Mohai and more sleep and better selfcare. All the actions above, especially this time of year, will lead to higher executive functioning, reasoning and more grounded, clearer decision making for your business!

 

We cannot give what we do not have: We cannot bring peace to the world if we ourselves are not peaceful. We cannot bring love to the world if we ourselves are not loving. Our true gift to ourselves and others lies not in what we have but in who we are.”   Marianne Williamson

 

Insight 2mental vision, understanding from within”

Sleep and dreams create who we are!

Just as our digestive system digests food and converts it into energy, our brain in REM sleep essentially functions to ‘digest’ our daily waking experiences and is connected to our dreaming. Although it’s difficult to understand our dreams from a waking consciousness, the latest neuroscience, positive psychology and sleep & dream psychology proves the importance of dreaming. Do you remember your dreams? Do you know how it may impact your waking world, your relationships and your business?

REM sleep is something we will dive deeper in the future but for now, know that it’s essential for learning and memory consolidation and that it also actively regulates our feelings and moods. According to Dr. Rubin Naiman, “it’s not a surprise that mood disorders, depression and anxiety, are frequently associated with a pattern of disrupted dreams”. In a future post, we’ll talk more about how our gut impacts our brain and how dreams impact our wellbeing.

We know that our gut acts as the ‘second brain’, processing and assimilating food we consume. Dr. Naiman says that, “in REM sleep the brain sifts through, digests and assimilates the vast array of information and experiences we “consume” by day, selecting what will be purged and what will be permanently assimilated into our long-term memories, essentially into who we are”.

 “The measure of who we are is what we do with what we have.”  Vince Lombardi

 

I’m here in service if I can help you find your center and who YOU really are. Let’s chat!