Rest, Renew, and Reflect on Your Health
Winter is the time when the cold wind and snow replace the sun’s summer heat. The days are shorter, urging our bodies to slow down. The new year is upon us, asking us to reflect on the year behind us and our health.
This makes winter the perfect time to rest, renew, and reflect on your health. During this time of year, it is essential to conserve energy and restore the vital energies to our bodies by taking in proper nourishment, warmth, and rest.
But where does one begin?
Start with resting. The ancient Chinese believed that human beings should live in harmony with the natural cycles of their environment. We used to be much more in-sync with the seasons, taking a pause from the farming or hunting of spring through fall to rejuvenate. However, modern technology has made that nearly impossible.
While plants and animals are hibernating during cold months, saving their energy for spring, we continue to exert our bodies. We don’t follow that natural cycle anymore because transportation makes it easy to always get around, news runs 24 hours a day, stores are open all day Sunday, and work can be done anywhere at any time with phones and laptops.
This is where balance needs to come into play. Tell your boss or clients you won’t be available to respond to emails after 6 or 7 pm. Focus on always getting 8 hours of sleep, even if that means leaving your phone in another room during bedtime. Eat when you’re hungry, not when you’re tired, and try your best not to overeat.
Small slip-ups, like a night of poor sleep, aren’t inherently bad. However, over time it can become a habit, negatively affecting your health. Set small goals and focus on giving yourself opportunities to slow down, check-in, and recharge.
Think about renewing your health goals for 2020. What would you like to improve and where are your weaknesses? Now is the time to take into account how your lifestyle supports or detracts from your health.
While we encourage you to rest, we want you to still be mindful of getting in daily exercise. This is not the time, however, to overexert yourself. Participate in gentler exercise, such as yoga, walking, swimming, Tai Chi, and other low-impact sports. Save high-impact activities for the spring and summer months. Even if you just opt for taking the stairs instead of the elevator, some movement during the day will help your body rest better at night.
Which brings us to sleep. Getting 8 hours of sleep is crucial, especially this time of year. Not getting enough sleep can weaken your immune system, cause thinking issues, lead to weight gain, and lower your sex drive. When you don’t get enough sleep, you increase your risk of diabetes, certain cancers, and even car accidents.
Whether you’re having trouble sleeping, suffering from too much stress, or just want to be more in-tune with the seasons, acupuncture can help renew your body. Acupuncture has a calming effect on the nervous system, supporting nerve channels, assisting the flow of oxygen-enriched energy and relaxing the body system. Commonly noted benefits from research studies include deeper breathing, improved digestion, better sleeping patterns, and a general sense of well-being. Acupuncture is a natural way to help us rebalance and renew our lives.
Reflection is the process in which an image or idea comes back to us, such as looking in a mirror, rethinking an event, or reviewing an idea. We have the opportunity to take a closer view and reconsider our original thinking.
The new year is a perfect time to reflect and use that knowledge as a catalyst for change. Acupuncture and Chinese Medicine can help achieve the change you seek, as it assists in illness prevention, stress relief, minimizes aches and pains, improves energy and brings balance. This calm and clarity strengthen your resolve as you start the new year with new goals.
If you don’t know what goals you want to focus on this year, contact us at Earley Wellness Group. One of our specialists can help you analyze your health, figure out where you want to be, and determine the steps to get there. We can join you in the process of resting, renewing, and reflecting on your health and give you the tools you need to succeed.