Here are all the things I have pulled together over the years to keep me feeling my best during the darkest month of the year.
And with Winter Solstice coming at the end of the week, this is the perfect time to make sure we are doing all we can to feel our best and slow down and care for our inner spark while the world sleeps on around us.
It’s okay to take these winter months slower, to tend to our inner needs more, and to make sure we are getting lots and lots of sleep.
It’s not only okay, it’s what we are *supposed* to be doing.
So let’s run through that checklist together:
1) Are you drinking plenty of water each day?
More important than the foods that we will eat today is our hydration status, especially amidst all this dry artificial heat in our workplace and winter fires in our homes.
Drink and drink and drink even more water then you are used to.
It’s easy to remember to drink water in the summer when you are perspiring, hot, and sticky.
It’s tricky to remember to drink it in the winter when you are dry and cold and flaky. Drink it anyway.
2) Are you taking fish oil?
Combating that winter dryness and helping to lift the winter fog in our brains that so many feel when the days are so short and the darkness falls… fish oil, flax seed oil, cod oil, any Omega supplements will help smooth out your days and ease your body from the brittleness that winter brings.
3) Are you sleeping more than you usually do in the spring/winter/fall?
Allow yourself to re-connect to the natural rhythm of the earth.
These days of bright artificial lights and TV channels that blast shows 24 hours a day can keep us feeling like there isn’t much difference between the middle of the night and the middle of the day.
To your body, to your pineal gland, your hormones, your muscles, your brain… the difference between night and day is iron clad.
You are meant to sleep at night, and you are meant to sleep longer in the winter months.
Allow your body to get an extra hour of sleep each night during the winter… at least in honor of Winter Solstice, vow to sleep an extra hour each night this week and see if your mood, energy level, eating habits, activity level and joy all get a boost!
4) Are you getting out there and touching the earth each day?
We all build up free radical damage, it’s a normal part of life.
What is not normal is that we are accruing damage from them, instead of letting them be effortlessly neutralized by the worlds biggest anti-inflammatory ever… the earth.
Ten minutes of direct contact with the earth will literally neutralize all the inflammation in your body from head to toe, inside and out.
If I could hook each and every one of you up to a PET scan and show you the difference just ten minutes would make to your body you would be so in love with the earth you would embrace her every day.
Want ideas on how? Grab my free Grounding Idea Book at the top of the side bar and I’ll make it easy for you to grab those anti-aging and anti-inflammatory benefits for yourself.
And if you find you are not getting your ten minute date in with mother earth every single day, please begin taking a Vitamin D supplement and continue to all winter long.
5) Are you pooping?
It’s normal for everything to slow down in the winter, but if your bowels are feeling full of rich and hearty winter meals and you are feeling dense inside, hopefully upping your water intake, taking tons of fish oil, and laying on the earth each day will help restore your daily rhythms.
If not, my favorite remedy is juicing a whole bunch of apples… or a prune a day.
And as a last resort, as tea with senna in it will certainly help you feel back to normal.
6) Are you allowing yourself gain a few pounds?
You might be an enlightened buddha thriving off the energy of the universe, but your body is an organic, human thing that is connected to the physical earth and responds to the rhythms of the seasons. Every winter it is normal to slow down and allow a few extra pounds to sustain and warm you.
It is like-wise just as effortless and natural to lose several pounds in the spring as the world awakens and we are drawn to more physical labor such as preparing garden beds, trimming the lawn, spring cleaning our homes, and walking barefoot on the beach. If we don’t attach all the typical BS to our weight that we usually do, the few pounds that warm us in the winter will be shed without a second thought in the spring. This is the natural rhythm of the animal world all around you.
The first half of winter, while food is still plenty and days grow darker, are a time to allow yourself to find nourishment in foods and warmth under your blankets, eating more and sleeping longer. In a few months, as the pantry empties out and the holiday parties are long gone, there will be a natural thinning time, a time when the days become noticeably longer and your thoughts turn to the fresh spring salads that will be popping up in your garden. It is only when we attach a negative meaning to our weight that we attach heaviness and permanency and BULK to it… and these pounds become a part of how we see ourselves forever and we get locked into battle with them and they fight to stay and add and grow, year after year after year.
As a result, most people tend to gain a few pounds a year (despite being locked in constant battle and fighting against it the entire time) and accrue this mass permanently, instead of easily gaining and losing a few pounds with the seasons.
It just shows that fighting weight isn’t the way to go.
If we dropped all our mental baggage around this rhythm, a rhythm of ebb and flow, of nourishment and lean times, of seasons, we would not gain weight year after year after year, instead we would gain and release.
It’s only our society that fears weight gain that makes it almost *impossible* to drop the pounds without even thinking twice about it late winter and early spring.
Now is not the time to allow that mental baggage to taint what should be a natural time of celebration, stocking up, preparing for the winter ahead.
Just as your body yearns for more sleep, your body yearns to fortify your heart and your soul.
If you welcome this seasonal change with gratitude, you will be healthier for it.
Want more winter inspiration?
Check out my Fall/Winter Health Tips Pinterest Board here:
And my Winter Spirit board here:
AND!!!! Time for my second pinterest contest!!!
All you have to do is repin something from my website or shop — a blog post, health tip, picture, favorite health course, healing artwork, even my children’s book — and I will give you a free copy of the original book Earthing: The Worlds Greatest Health Discovery? by Ober, Sinatra and Zucker.
It’s one of my favorite books of all time and something I believe in with all my heart and soul.
If you haven’t read the original book yet, you need this free gift.
I’ll even ship it free!
All you need to do is pin something from my website or shop and leave me a link to your board or pin in the comments below, and I’ll send a free book to the first 5 folks who do so!
I’m going to take next week off from my blog to enjoy the holidays… so have a fantastic and safe holiday to each and every one of you and I’ll see you back here on the last day of the year!