Moving with the Seasons ~ A Guide to Thrive in Spring
As we shed the dark, cold, patient stillness of the Winter months we emerge into the rising energy of Spring. The days lengthen, the temperature warms, and nature glides gracefully into this new season, a time of rebirth, sudden expansion, and rapid growth.
In traditional healing modalities, particularly the Five Elements theory of Traditional Chinese Medicine, the outer world is reflected in our inner world as we’re called to release the stagnation of Winter and draw on the internal resources we’ve accumulated to bloom, expand, and rise meeting the potential and possibility that this new season offers.
With the warmer days, bursting flower buds, busy bees, and the pulsing energy all around these are some of the practices (and medicinal mushrooms of course!) we’re mindful of to align ourselves with the qualities of Spring, supporting our physical, emotional, and spiritual harmony in order to thrive.
What we eat can have a great impact on our energy, mood and bodily functions. Some foods are warming and restorative, while others can be cooling and cleansing. As we shift from Winter to Spring, we look to add in lighter stimulating foods like brothy soups, vitamin-rich tender greens, and loads of herbs and spices. Seeing a rainbow of fresh veggies in the fridge always gets us in the mood to create something delicious. The different colours in fruits, vegetables, and herbs tell us they are brimming with incredibly beneficial phytonutrients that are so deeply nourishing.
As an extra layer add on:
- Polyphenol and antioxidant-rich berries and herbs and spices such as sage, rosemary and cinnamon.
- Cleansing foods such as lemon, dandelion or bitter leafy greens, beetroot and ginger.
- Probiotic-rich foods like cultured vegetables and apple cider vinegar.
- Prebiotic-rich foods to help lay the groundwork for a healthy microbiome like seaweed, again garlic, seeds like flax and Turkey Tail.
As our bodies emerge from a somewhat dormant Winter state our detox pathways are primed to do some deep cleaning, shedding the stagnation and toxins accumulated over the cooler months preparing us for the high-energy days of Summer.
We tune into this season of renewal and look to ways to support our liver, kidneys and lymphatic system bringing about a better energetic flow. While Spring often sees the rise in chatter about 'detoxing trends' our body is detoxing all the time and the liver is a big part of that process. Everything we eat, breathe and absorb is processed by the liver. The skin and the liver work together to remove waste from the body, so often if there is an imbalance showing up externally like rashes, dull complexion or acne the origin can be traced to the liver. Rather than 'detoxing' we like to think about offering gentle support to the liver working in more light, green and vitamin-rich foods, teas like dandelion root or nettle and from a medicinal mushroom perspective we look to Reishi. Reishi has been shown to upregulate liver enzymes used to process and eliminate harmful substances from the body.
As an additional note Reishi is a trusted ally for anyone suffering from seasonal allergies. As a supreme immunomodulator, studies have demonstrated Reishi’s capacity to provide an anti-inflammatory and antiallergic action to help soothe the symptoms of allergies.
Dry Body Brushing
Dry brushing is an invigorating way to rejuvenate the appearance of your skin by removing dead skin cells and also mobilising the fluid beneath the skin's surface to promote lymphatic flow and increase blood circulation. The best time to dry brush is just before a shower with a natural stiff-bristled brush.
Move & Get Outdoors
As nature puts on a show with the colours, sounds and scent of Spring in full bloom it’s the perfect time to remind our bodies that stagnant patterns can shift. It’s the perfect time to get outside, tune into our bodies and look for ways to increase our movement and release stuck energy whether that be walking, running, yoga, surfing, whatever it is that calls you the most.
Planning & Putting Ideas into Action
Reflecting the surging expansion, new life and growth of the natural world, Spring can be a great time to draw on this rising energy taking the time to ideate and plan, and bring about focused action on desires and dreams. Developing a journaling practice can help bring structure and clarity to any intentions and goals and provide a framework to allow them to manifest.
Creating literal space to allow new ideas and opportunities to come through can also be a cathartic and rewarding practice – it’s not called Spring Cleaning for nothing! Taking the time to declutter, reorganise and rehome what no longer serves you clears the mind, creates fresh energy in your home and makes space for the new.