Episode 009 Seasons of Change
Seasons of Change
In this week's episode we are talking all about Vata Season. Vata season starts in Autumn and goes all the way into the early part of winter. You can begin to feel the vata energy all around you when the mornings become a little cooler, the air feels a bit crisper, and people are already talking about the end of summer. If you notice any one of those happenings...its VATA season!
Vata governs space and air, but vata also governs the idea of transitions. Autumn is a time that a lot of transitioning is going on. The leaves change color and fall off, we go from vacation mindset to a back to work mindset, are local food source transitions into root veggies, the air changes from warm and humid to cool and dry. So with all of the transition whirling around you can't help but feel a little off balance. In these times of transition we can often fall ill, feel low energy, or get higher levels of anxiety.
Don't worry...you aren't crazy, its just vata season. In the vata episode I shared that vata people tend to lean in toward the intellectual and spiritual side, so everyone, no matter what dosha, is feeling much more heady.
Here are some things you might be feeling:
- Skin and hair are a little drier
- "What am I doing with my life" comes on REAL hard
- Scattered in your thoughts
- More serious take on your day to day routine
- The pull towards knowledge or the want to go back to school
With all of that going on I bet you are asking...How do I find balance in this time of transition? The thing you want to think about for Vata season is routine and rituals. Finding your morning and night routine will really ground you into the earth so that you can make decisions from a sound mind. Begin to live with intention!
Here are some other practices you can bring into your life:
- Wake up a little bit earlier than you are used to. There is so much peace and quiet in the day that you can soak up to keep your thoughts from scattering
- Slow breathing techniques that will calm anxiety, spacey thoughts. Try alternate nostril breathing or slow breaths in on a count of 6 and out on a count of 8
- Begin to add more moisture into your hair, skin, and food. After the shower do a full body massage with your oil and let it sit on the skin for about 10 minutes. Wipe of any excess
- Vata- Sesame oil
- Pitta- Coconut oil
- Kapha- Olive oil
- Follow the fashion. I bet you have noticed that your favorite stores have brought in the colors of fall. You are probably seeing plum, maroon, sage, terra cotta items in store and online. Wear them, and honor this time of year. It will give you a sense of connection to Vata season without feeling like you are running from it. You can bring it in your home, clothes, nail polish, or makeup. Get creative and see how and where you can add the colors of fall into your life.
The most satisfying way to "do" Ayurveda is through food and Vata season is all about comfort and sustainability. Remember that this is the time when our ancestors where preparing for the cold harsh months by eating hardier foods to withstand the winter. While we don't have to be that proactive there is still a part of our human makeup that naturally loves following the rhythm of nature. Bring out the slow cooker, and begin roasting everything!!
Here are some foods to include this Vata Season:
- Oatmeal, polenta, quinoa porridge with coconut milk, raisins, nutmeg, and cinnamon
- Lunch- Remember this is your heaviest meal traditionally in Ayurveda
- Hearty Soups
- Sweet Potatoes
- Roasted Veggies with coconut oil
- Good quality Salmon
- Warm spiced milk with honey or dates to sweeten
A word about juices and smoothies in Vata season! I know as NYC health people you love your juice and smoothie shop. It's time to transition from your bright citrusy green juices and smoothies in favor of root veggie smoothies. And don't drink them ice cold.
Here is what to look for:
- Beet juice with pineapple (It feels like a grown up fruit punch)
- Carrot Juice
- Ginger as an add in
- Almond/Coconut milk spiced milk smoothies
- Apple, Ginger, Cayenne
Other things to keep in mind while moving from the beginning of vata season into the winter:
- Dress Warm- the temperature can have a dramatic shift from morning to day and into night. The more you keep yourself warm now the less stress your body will go through in the true cold months. Keep a hoodie or long sleeve in your bag
- Get that ice out of your water!
- Hook into a slower rhythm. I know as performers we feel like we have to do it all in order to get ahead. Try and be intentional about how you are using your time and honor when your body wants to rest
- Try journaling for 30 days as a way to settle your thoughts
- Keep high energy, loud music workouts to a minimum and add some more mindful movement into your workout routine