A Feel Good Winter
Chapter 2 of 12
Without a doubt, feelings of lack, doubt, unmotivated, tiredness, unsettled, and unusually emotional can settle in during winter the months...and rightfully so! It's colder than a witch's tit in a brass bra and the day sun is but a fleeting moment here in Saskie! No wonder our energy is depleted and life feels a little heavier this time of year.
I thought this would be the perfect time to talk about things to help energize your winter season, but also bring peace of mind.
So, grab a cup of tea, get cozy and enjoy some time planning out some winter TLC for yourself...
YOU DESERVE IT!
A Feel Good Winter
1. Take Time to Rest, Reflect & Rejuvenate
Making time for rest is equally as important as doing. We must bring balance to our lives. If our life is often fast paced, rushed and in "to-do" mode we must make a conscious effort to balance that out with time to rejuvenate the mind, body and soul. We can't be in overdrive all of the time and expect to feel balanced, energized, and healthy in our mind, body and spirit.
Winter months are a great time to reconnect with yourself and they are meant to be quiet, reflective and restorative.
There's nothing wrong with feeling a little more tired in the winter time. Honour that feeling rather than belittling yourself and telling yourself you're lazy, unmotivated, etc. There is a time for play, doing, achieving, etc. But, there's also a time for solitude and that time is now.
Things to try:
-catch-up with family or an old friend over the phone
-read a book
-light a candle
-soak in a epsom salt, baking soda and lavender bath
Anything that will fill your cup and welcomes peace and ease into your life is PERFECT for the winter season.
2. Supplements for the Winter Season
Vitamin D: "Getting your Vitamin D levels in optimal range (between 50 and 100 ng/mL) can help prevent disease, including Seasonal Affective Disorder (S.A.D.), multiple sclerosis, and even breast cancer! But, in the winter, it can be hard to get enough sunlight for your body to create Vitamin D. So, ask your health care practitioner to order a 25-hydroxy vitamin D to determine your levels. If you have low Vitamin D, take 5,000 IUs per day of a high-quality Vitamin D supplement and continue to monitor your levels. Remember, it’s still important to get as much natural light as you can. This will help you maintain a positive attitude, which will help boost your immune system." - Dr. Christiane Northrup (Women's Health Specialist)
Take a multivitamin mineral supplement: "In addition to taking Vitamin D, a good multivitamin mineral supplement can help boost your immune system and keep you feeling good. Be sure to look for a high-quality supplement that contains vitamins A and C, along with the minerals zinc and selenium and the amino acid L-carnitine. Add glutathione, an important, immune-enhancing antioxidant that has been shown to help support your liver, the organ primarily responsible for detox in your body. Turmeric is a great free radical scavenger and does double-duty to improve joint and cardiovascular health. If you are under stress, you may want to add an adaptogen, such as Ashwaganda, to your supplement routine. And don’t forget to take enough magnesium. Remember, vitamins are not magic bullets, but they can help support your body when used properly. Take the supplements that feel right for your body and remember that what is right for you now may change, so trust your intuition." -Dr. Christiane Northrup (Women's Health Specialist)
See your local natural health practitioner or health food store to get your supplements
3. Swap Self-Improvement for Self-Love
There's a HUGE difference between living our best life from a place of love than from a place of improvement. Adopting self-love, rather than self-improvement, into your life is the best way that we can feel well as a whole (mentally, physically, emotionally, socially and spiritually).
Self-improvement can be an incredibly draining. Self-improvement is driven by the notion that you're not already good enough. You might have goals that are made and being carried out from a place of, "I'm too fat", "I'm not good enough", "If only I had this, then I would be happy", "I need to look or feel a different way", etc. We all know these thoughts and feelings. Most of us have them on a daily to hourly basis in our life.
When our goals, or the things we do, come from the idea that "we're not good enough", the things we do to "be better" slowly deplete our energy. This is because we are being influenced from our ego self-rather than our true-self. It is truly exhausting to live your life doing things to be more lovable and acceptable to yourself and/or others. This is why so many New Years Resolutioners at the gym lose their focus, drive and ultimately quit going. They face an obstacle, and their energy is already low from being so hard on themselves that the obstacle is too much to feat.
On the other hand, some that are largely driven from a place of self-improvement may indeed meet their goals. However, after achieving goals that are from our ego we're left wondering can I/others love and accept me if I'm not trying this hard? What is else there that I need to fix? This isn't a sustainable or healthy way to be living our lives.
The practice of self-love is driven by the notion that you're already beautifully made. We are all perfect beings just the way that we are. There might be things about ourselves or circumstances of our life that feel less than perfect, but truth be told, if you're experiencing them we're MEANT TO BE EXPERIENCING them, and that is indeed perfect. The more that we force something to something it's not, the more resistance we create. Force is never the answer to anything in life. However, the more that we can surrender our expectations, nurture ourselves as we are on a moment to moment basis, and see that anything good in our life is just an addition to an already perfect life, our energy will be optimistic and abundant.
Self-love is not the practice of just doing nothing—it's the practice of knowing there is no way to happiness, and that happiness is just THE way. When we can make choices, goals, decisions and actions from a place of what TRULY ignites our soul, the things that we do won't be draining. They'll be UPLIFTING! Work that we love doesn't feel like work. Exercise or ways to move our body doesn't feel like a chore. The things that you choose to do will feel AMAZING because they're in line of already loving yourself and they're just an extension of that!
Take a look at your actions, goals and self-talk. Are they coming from a place of self-love or self-improvement? Can you shift your actions, goals and self-talk to embracing the feelings you wish to have and making choices / doing things in your life because it feels good in your heart to be doing it? Can you let go of doing things to fix yourself or to be more lovable and acceptable?
To really hit the nail on the head / drive this home, take a moment to reflect on this:
WHAT WOULD IT FEEL LIKE IF I WASN'T JUDGING MYSELF?
4. Move Your Body
Regular exercise strengthens your immune system. It also makes you feel good. If the winter months make you less likely to get outside for exercise, try doing an indoor workout. There are so many at-home workouts that you can do without owning any gym equipment. You can also try group exercise classes, which not only will keep you moving, but will help you stay connected to others and is another great way to strengthen your immune system. If you're in Carlyle, Built 4 Life Health & Fitness has AMAZING fitness classes that are super enjoyable, a safe space, motivational, and will help you to be connected with like minded people.
Find ways to exercise that FEEL GOOD to you. What's good for someone else might not be what's right for you. I spent YEARS punishing myself with cardio 4+ times a week. As a result, I gained weight because my fight/flight mode was engaged all of the time which released an excess of cortisol into my body (AKA stress weight). I felt tired, achy, had a foggy mind and was overweight even though I was working out to optimize my health and lose weight. Now, this isn't to say that this will be true for you. I'm sharing this so you will listen to your body. Maybe you are more suited to slow / mindful movement? Maybe you need a mixture of vigorous exercise and gentle exercise. Play around with your work-out routines and see what your body responds best to.
There is not x-y-z formula to feeling your best / looking your best when it comes to exercise. Try different things and listen to your heart on what you would really ENJOY doing.
5. Sleep / Lay Off the Technology
"Adequate sleep is important for your brain and every organ in your body. When I feel like I am getting sick, sleep is my number one remedy because it allows my body to repair. As the days get shorter, take your cue from the sun and go to bed earlier. (You can benefit from doing this even if you are not feeling sick.) Limit caffeine, avoid alcohol, and turn off the television, computer, and phone at least one hour before going to bed. Here are some more ways to get a good night’s sleep." -Dr. Christiane Northrup
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Wishing you a beautiful February filled with energy, rest and self-love.
Shine bright Seekers,