How To Be Well In Summer
Happy Summer (in the Northern Hemisphere)! To offer you support in having *dare I say* a happier, healthier summer season than ever before I’m going to share with you how to apply the concept of “like increases like and opposites bring balance” to your diet, movement, and other lifestyle rituals and routines throughout the month of June.
As a health coach I am keenly aware that some of us love the longer days and some of us strive to avoid the extra heat and sunlight this time of year. Some of us feel a renewed sense of lightness and some of us seek dark, air-conditioned spaces during this season!
Whether you are someone who is hot-natured and can’t wait for winter or someone who has a hard time staying warm in winter and thus relishes the heat of summer (like myself), the seasons need not be an intrinsic source of fluctuating dread and euphoria!
We can live in harmony in our bodies throughout the year by having a basic understanding of the seasons and making minor adjustments to our day-to-day behaviors at the arrival of each new season.
If this idea sounds daunting to you right now trust me when I say...people who get curious and experiment with syncing up their routines with the cycles of creation find that seasonal adjustments come quite naturally - and that a few simple changes can dramatically improve how they feel in their bodies, minds, and emotions. So, if you are ready to create a little ebb and flow in your habits as the seasons change so that you can experience a majorly improved state of balance in your body and entire life first you must memorize this phrase: like increases like and opposites bring balance. For example, just as you wouldn't turn the heat on in your home in the peak days of summer, it is unwise to increase the heat inside your body when it's hot outside. Remember, while there is plenty to celebrate about each season, it’s possible to have too much of a good thing! Now, let's move on...
The Personality of Summer - and "Pitta" People
Depending upon your body type, or constitution, the qualities of summer listed above may mirror your own body or they may be the opposite. This is why summertime naturally leads some people toward an internal sense of harmony...while aggravating others.
The characteristics of summer — the heat, the long days of bright sun, the sharp intensity — when combined with day-to-day choices that are too heating/bright/sharp lead to everything from skin rashes, diarrhea and heart burn to emotional anger and irritability.
General Recommendations for Summer/Pitta Season
The following recommendations, which focus on staying cool, relaxed, and grounded, will help you prevent the over-accumulation of summer qualities so that you can enjoy the playful gifts of summertime!
Get plenty of fresh air by taking meandering walks.
Exercise outside at a level of low-moderate intensity and during the cool times of day/night.
Before showering give yourself a massage using coconut oil, sunflower oil, or pitta massage oil.
Surround yourself with sweet smells, scents, and company.
Listen to soft, peaceful music.
Meditate or practice personal prayer or reflection, daily. Don't already have a meditation practice? Start with one minute. Or one long, slow, deep breath. Seriously!
Eat foods and spices that are light and naturally cooling like coconuts, sweet berries, cilantro, fennel, watermelon, and bitter vegetables.
Limit or avoid foods spiced with chili peppers, cayenne, dried ginger, mustard seeds, and other hot spices.
Wear light, well-ventilated clothing in cooling colors such as white, blue, and purple.
Focus on being patient and tolerant.
Avoid overly critical or judgmental thoughts.
If you are having trouble sleeping because you are overheated, try sleeping on your right side.
Engage in refreshing activities like swimming and gentle yoga.
Wear sunscreen (sunburns are especially pitta-aggravating).
Bask in the light of the moon for 20 minutes or so.
Avoid hot tubs or steam rooms; instead go for a cool dip in a pool or swim in a river or the ocean.
Be sure to take long, slow, deep breaths while you are waiting in traffic or otherwise stuck in the heat of summer.
If you have a yoga practice, consider replacing sun salutations with moon salutations during summer.
Include regular times for rest, relaxation, and play in your daily and weekly schedule.
Look for more summer support coming to your inbox over the next few weeks. I'll be sending you more interesting information and specific recommendations related to climate, diet, psychology, body practices, and more. *Not on my email list? Subscribe to this site OR simply send me an email at email@example.com and let me know you want to be added.
In general set up a summer schedule that makes space for plenty of soothing, playful activities. Combine this with a healthy, cooling diet and you will enjoy a summer flowing with positivity in your whole being!
In Support Of Your Fruitful Living, - Michel