Don’t Overdo It

It has come to the end of a calendar year and a new one has begun.

Except, it hasn’t.

Seasonally we’re still in Winter.

Seasonally we’re, according to Chinese Medicine,  still in the crossing over period between 2018 and 2019. The new year begins with new life in Spring.

Perhaps you’ve read what I’ve been writing on Instagram, how to ride the flow of winter rather than struggle against it.

Winter is a resting period, rest being the foundation (not building work, not the doing, that is not foundation) for the rest of the year. Winter is a time of sleep, where nature recoils and hibernates, where animals sleep.  Winter is also the time for dreaming what we want for the year, in big wild fantastical ways, to be horizontal as much as possible. Resting is not surfing the internet or watching box sets after box sets.

It can be listening to music, wandering the streets of our cities (or forests) with no set route. It’s an exploratory time. Wandering is healing Winter in Chinese Medicine is a solitary time as well. It’s not for group activities. Deep rest is achieved by deep being, anything to you which is deeply healing.

But none of this is typically found at the start of year.

The typical mindset that can be found at the start of January is one that is forces, forces oneself to exercise, to quit chocolate, smoking. Drag yourself to the gym, fight start a healthy habit.

And do you actually acheive what you want with all this fighting?

Or do these new things all collapse through and you feel more exhausted than ever?

Consider that you’re going against what Winter is made for, that these active activities are akin to running around in the blizzard shouting for the trees to just wake up and grow! Grow you sapling! Make yourself green!

Then you get hypothermia. And die. Metaphorically anyway.

Chinese Medicine can be used to study timing, or plan what is appropriately timed so everything can flow effortlessly, gracefully. Where there is a fight, resistance, a struggle, there is something that is not meant to be, perhaps not right now. Perhaps someday. Perhaps never.

To work in a time of rest can cause a deficit of exhaustion, so that when the seasons turn and it’s more appropriate to work, you’ll want to catch up on rest. Yin and Yang. What goes around comes around.

I don’t do new year’s resolutions for these reasons, because (a) it’s not the new year yet, (b) it’s not supported, and (c) if I take the time to rest now it will pay dividends in the future, for the rest of the year in fact.

If I have described you and your new years resolutions, please be gentle with yourself and take the Wintery advice I’ve given above. Please know that this time of year does not support new things or new activities, so do not to beat yourself up if things are going pear shaped. It’s not your fault. It’s a clue that you should rest because you are an animal, a creature of nature.

And this is where I will leave you.

See you in a blog post next week ❤