Grounding Tips for Vata Season
Are you experiencing an uptick in restlessness and anxiety? Feeling extra scattered, perhaps? Can’t complete a thought to save your life? If you’re feeling called out and can relate to any of the following, don’t worry. You’re not alone, friend.
- You’ve been late to work because you forgot your phone at home then had to return home AGAIN to make sure you closed the garage.. and you then ended up leaving your phone in your car anyway.
- You have had eight windows open on your computer screen split between eight different projects, but you can’t commit to working on any one project for more than five minutes.
- In an effort to tackle the incredible amount of tasks on your plate, you made a to-do list. Then you lost the list.
- You have walked back and forth across your home or workplace to complete a task, but it takes a few trips (or a few hours) to remember what exactly that task was.
- You made a plan to start a new hobby, wellness routine, rekindle friendships, and learn a new skill.. then imploded from the onset of anxiety triggered by the thought of it all.
The train wreck described above has been my week. Can you relate? If any of this sounds familiar, you may be experiencing the effects of what's known in Ayurveda as a Vata imbalance. When Vata accumulates in our bodies it also manifests physically as dry skin, constipation, anxiety, and a general feeling of being unsettled.
Ayurveda divides the year into three seasons. Each season is comprised of its own unique qualities that can cause imbalances within our mind and body when in excess. As we move into Vata season (late Fall through the coldest part of winter), we feel a shift in nature as well as in our bodies. The air is cool and dry while unpredictable winds mirror the erratic energy we feel within us.
The good news is that Ayurveda also provides us with seasonal practices that help balance the effects of the changing seasons on our bodies. Ayurveda shows us that by making small adjustments to our food and daily routines we can harmonize our bodies with nature's ebbs and flows to prevent illness and imbalance.
Try these remedies for balancing Vata:
- Slow down. Ayurveda teaches us that like increases like - meaning if we are erratic in our nature during this seasonal shift, we will further perpetuate the effects of Vata season on our minds and bodies. Reign in your energy, stop multitasking, and focus on one task at a time. Intentionally embrace stillness each morning by setting aside 5 minutes to sit in stillness and quiet as you begin your day.
- Get cozy. Wear layers; dig your favorite slippers out of the closet; and embrace warming and anti-inflammatory herbal drinks like Golden Milk and Chai Tea. Your body and mind will thank you.
- Let aromatherapy soothe and ground you. A combination of warm and sweet essential oils like Patchouli, Lavender, Vetiver, Ylang Ylang, and Vetiver can provide relief. Try the Hermitage Blend of incense or Vata Aromatherapy Spray to help you connect with grounding energy. The application of body oils can soothe dry skin while the physical touch and aromatherapy calm and comfort.
- Establish routines. Routines are essential year round but even more so during Vata season. Simple things like eating at the same time each day and going to sleep/waking up at the same time each day can be a game changer.
- Show your digestive tract some love. Drink warm water first thing in the morning. Think about introducing and bitters and tonics to support digestion into your daily routine. Make lunch your main meal of the day, and keep your dinner light and at least two hours before bed.
- Ground. If you practice yoga, focus on grounding poses and slowing down your practice. Practicing Mountain, Child’s, and Garland poses while focusing your breath and attention downward is a perfect way to focus your energy.
- Try Ear Oil. Discover the Vata pacifying benefits of oiling your ears! This ancient Ayurvedic practice, known as karna purana, provides nourishment and protection to the ears, maintaining optimal auditory health, a relaxed jaw, and a grounded demeanor.
- Breathe. Just 2-15 minutes of pranayama each morning can help clear the mind and calm Vata. Alternate nostril breathing is especially helpful, or simply slow your breath taking care to even out the duration of each inhalation to match that of each exhalation.
Now that we have some tools laid out, pick ONE. (Don’t try to tackle everything at once you overachiever!) Which sounds easiest? START THERE! Now extend yourself and those around you an abundance of grace as we move into this season. And above all else, take care. We’ve got this.