By Carole Fogarty
Rejuvenate Your Body:
When you are disconnected from your body, you care more about emails, messages, the tv, media, gossip magazines and other people’s business than you do about your own physical, emotional and spiritual needs.
Now - is always the perfect time to give your body the extra loving attention it deserves (and needs) on a regular basis.
Nurture it, detox it, care for it, rest it, hydrate it, pamper it, feed it wisely, colour it up, treat it to organics and exercise it. Give your body everything its deserves, plus more, and notice the change in your energy and stress levels - not to mention your overall well-being. Your skin will glow, your eyes will twinkle and your face will smile like never before.
Simply remembering you have a body, more often, and tuning in to its messages (thirsty, hungry, pain, tired, fresh air etc.) is a great start. Following are some simple suggestions which I’m trusting will inspire you (and myself) to look after our bodies just that little bit more.
Give Your Body The Quality Attention It Deserves:
1. Balance your female, male sides:
One of the keys to wholeness is balancing your female and male sides. You achieve a harmonious flow between “energy in” and ” energy out”.
When your female and male sides are balanced you know when to ask for support, walk away, say no, take action, or rest. When your two sides are balanced you can successfully achieve, without burnout or exhaustion. You have strong boundaries and know when you need to stop and receive. You feel grounded, centred and don’t waste your energies unnecessarily.
If you are not sure which of your sides is dominating, simply close your eyes, scan the left side (feminine) of your body, then your right side (masculine). Observe which side has more tension, tightness or pain.
I, personally have found that when I take the time to stop and listen (to my body), it becomes fairly obvious which side is dominating. I know by simply having this awareness, I can begin to balance my thoughts and life, and then grab myself a massage or acupuncture treatment.
2: Go barefoot:
Going barefoot is healthy. It’s grounding (that’s the point) and gives your feet some much deserved freedom. Walking barefoot is a fabulous therapeutic exercise for your toes and feet. The simple act of taking off your shoes, after a busy day, triggers a relaxation response.
If my yoga teacher were here she would be saying - spread your toes, feel the ball of your little and big toes firmly touch the ground. Feel the weight of your body evenly spread across your feet. You’d be surprised how often you have more weight on one foot, than the other.
3. Get your blood tested:
I recently had my bloods tested for vitamin and mineral levels. I found, to my surprise ( I eat very well), that my calcium and iron levels were particularly low. Whilst I still felt great, long term deficiencies would eventually leave to more serious complications. Don’t wait until something goes wrong, you might not be absorbing the nutrients from your foods that you think you are.
4. Give your body a louder voice:
Place your left thumb over left ear (as if you are wanting to block off the sound), place your right thumb over your right ear and cover your eyes with your fingers. Turn your awareness inwards, and slow your breathing down.
Allow your body’s voice rise to the surface of your thoughts.
What can you notice, see or hear, when you pay attention to your inner body?
5. Give your body silence and stillness:
“When you lose touch with inner stillness, you lose touch with yourself. When you lose touch with yourself, you lose yourself in the world” Eckhart Tolle
Restlessness is a modern disease. Stillness and silence are a lost art. Why not try sitting still for 5 minutes without reading, eating, watching, or getting carried away with your thoughts. Just be, and notice the restlessness inside.
Following are a couple of articles on relaxation yoga, giving you a few options to experience 5 minutes of stillness each day.
6. Detox gently by drinking warm water:
My Ayurvedic practitioner shared with me that sipping warm water has a hormone balancing effect, strips your body of ama (toxins) and improves your digestion. How magical is that. For many years now I’ve drunk warm water instead of cool water.
7. Start your morning gently:
I’m a firm believer in how I start my morning sets the tone for my day ahead. If I start rushed, my day is rushed.
Moving from a deep sleep (yin state ) to being fully alert ( yang state ), all in the space of a few seconds is not what nature intended. After all the sun doesn’t “rush” itself up each morning.
Create the space so you can gently transition, from your sleep to your awake state.
Two or three minutes spent belly breathing (whilst still lying in bed) is a very satisfying way to welcome your body into a new day.
Get up half an hour early ( if you need too) and enjoy a gentle early morning routine. I guarantee you will definitely notice a difference to the quality and flow of your day ahead.
8: Lift the weight off your shoulders:
If a thought, situation or person is weighing heavy on your mind, then it will be weighing heavy also on your body. Emotional baggage can be an incredible drain and burden on your body.
I, personally have found removing clutter (lots and lots of it) incredibly healing for shifting life’s problems. It always, always, without fail, brings a lightness, which in turn brings clarity to a situation. Clearing clutter, without a doubt, bring a feeling a relief and lightness to your body.
Start with the room or cupboard you are avoiding the most.
And, if you really can’t clear the clutter, then re-arrange your furniture and shift the energy around you. A static environment around you, keeps you stuck in life.
9. Use a body brush and help your skin breathe:
Your skin is the largest eliminating organ of your body. Make sure the toxins are being efficiently removed by dry body brushing your skin each day before you hop into the shower.
It stimulates blood flow, removes dead skin cells and lets your skin breathe happily. It’s important to use a good quality natural fibre hand mitt or brush.
10. Carry healthy snacks:
Avoid skipping meals or buying junk food on the go. Carry a little bag of almonds, cashews, dried figs or dates. And, if you have the time treat yourself to some home made bliss balls, they are packed full of nutrients, and require no cooking.
11. Remember to breathe - often:
Breathing mindfully reminds your mind, that you actually have a body. Breathe to calm, soften, unwind and relax your stressed body parts. Breathe to improve your mind body connection. Breathe to improve your focus and concentration.
Inhale deeply to oxygenated, and exhale deeply to detoxify.
12. Smile into your organs:
The energy behind a smile is healing and carries a high vibration. I experienced many years the benefits of smiling into your organs from a Qi Gong practitioner in Melbourne. It was one of the most memorable 3 month courses I have ever done.
Smiling into your kidneys helps dissolve fear. Smiling into your liver helps dissolve anger. Smiling into your lungs helps dissolve sadness.
Spend a few minutes smiling on your face. Breathe into your smile and then send that smiling energy into your kidneys. Keep breathing and smiling deep into your kidneys until you feel they are filled with smiling energy.
Now send smiling energy to your liver, heart, lungs etc. Sometimes you will feel a little resistence with some organs, be patient and keep breathing and smiling.
The smiling mediation spreads a nourishing and uplifting energy to your inner core. It keeps your body healthy. Great to do, anytime of the day, if you are feeling rushed, stressed and frantic.
13: Eat sitting down:
The purpose of eating is to eat. Support your digestion system and ensure you are getting maximum nourishment from your food by eating sitting down, in a peaceful and quiet environment.
Spend a few minutes making sure you have fully arrived at your meal so you can enjoy and appreciate fully, its taste, flavours, texture, smell and appearance.
14:Chew your food
Digestion begins in the mouth. The more you chew the more oxygen is sent to the brain. Chewing relaxes your lower stomach muscles and triggers the rest of the digestive process. The macrobiotic lifestyle recommend chewing your food until it becomes liquid before swallowing. Now, that’s going to take more than 10 chews per mouthful.
15. Make a regular date with your body:
Make sure you put yourself first on your daily “to do” list. Here’s a great time formula to get you started. 1/2 an hour a day, 1/2 a day a week and 1 day a month.
16. Stay hydrated. Sip water every 15 minutes:
Your body is predominately water and research shows that a mere 2% drop in body water can trigger fuzzy thinking. Water is very clever as it hydrates your organs, improves concentration and detoxes your body - all at the same time.
If you are like me, and find drinking two litres of water a day somewhat boring then try sipping hot water or squeeze some lime or lemon juice into it or eat your water by having more fruit.
17. Move and stretch your body:
Your body is designed to move.
Squat, twist, unhunch your shoulders, go to yoga, learn the tango, wall push up’s next to your computer, try some face yoga, hand yoga, foot therapy or better still take a 20 minute power walk to release some of the tension from your body.
Whatever you do, move it.
18. Feed your body wisely - Avoid anger foods:
Deep fried, highly processed foods burdened your liver. In Chinese Medicine the liver relates to the emotion of anger. Keep your body and emotions happy by eliminating deep fried food and fatty food from your diet. A burdened liver makes for one grumpy person.
19. Start tongue scraping:
Each morning after oil pulling, I scrape my tongue around 7 or 8 times with a metal tongue scraper. The benefits of tongue scraping are awesome. It removes toxins, stops you swallowing the bacteria that has gathered on your tongue over night, enhances your sense of taste, improves your digestion and gently stimulates your organs.
Trust me, you will be shocked when you see the amount of “sludge” that comes off your tongue first thing in the morning.
20. Embrace a chemical free life:
Going chemical free is a work in progress. I’ve been on this journey for around 20 years now and still finding toxic things in my home.
Toxins can be inhaled, ingested or absorbed through your skin, all of which burden your organs. Why not begin with your kitchen and stop ingesting chemicals by how you cook, clean and store your food. For starters, switch your plastic containers for glass or bamboo, switch aluminum pots for stainless steel ones, buy natural dishwashing liquid, throw out plastic chopping boards and replace with bamboo or wooden.
For over 20 instant easy ideas read:
21. Think kindly, talk kindly:
Do you talk kindly or cruelly to your body. Now is the time to be mindful of the way you chat to your body. Every time you catch yourself saying something negative simply switch to a kind mantra.
My favourite at the moment is “Every cell in my body is loved and healthly” or you may prefer one from Louise Hay “I am my own best friend”
22: Calm Your Nerves Bath Recipe:
Epsom salts (magnesium sulfate) sedates your nervous system. It relaxes your muscles, releases toxins and is probably best known for reducing swelling. Magnesium is a mineral your nervous system and adrenals need in order to relax.
1 cup of Epsom salts (dissolve into hot bath water)
Tea light candle (create the mood)
23: Improve your skins appearance:
Inflammation in the skin is more likely if you have acidic blood. Improve your blood alkalinity and detoxification by simply taking liquid chlorophyll each day. Click here and watch a great short video by Ananda who is a Naturopath and passionate about 100% natural skin care. She’ll explain why she uses chlorophyll to look after her skin.
24: Go outside:
Nature never lets you down. Nature has a very natural ability to ground and centre you. It is extremely healing, as it nourishes you with life force energy whilst calming you down, all at the same time. Breathe in its energy up through your feet and notice the feeling that follows.
Try walking in nature, standing in nature or simply looking at nature (sky, tree, clouds). Living in a busy concrete city jungle, encourages you to live in your head and split your energies off into many directions. Your body needs a regular dose of nature.
Let your feet touch the ground, grass or sand each day. Let your nose and lungs fill with fresh air each day. Let your skin feel the sun and breeze.
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