Summer lovin’ had me a blast.
Did it you?
Summer is a time for loving. It’s not just some catchy lyric. In Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM) the season of summer is associated to the emotions of love and joy. And to the Element of Fire (because, you know, The Sun, that big ball of fire).
Summer is the time of year we spend more time outdoors as the weather is (supposedly) hotter and the days longer. We naturally spend more time connecting with others, celebrating and enjoying the fruits of our labour (metaphorically speaking).
However, just because it’s summer doesn’t mean we’re guaranteed love and joy. Especially after months of lockdowns, restrictions and uncertainty, as well as a slow start to the summer, it may be harder to get into the spirit of things.
We’ve been through unprecedented (I said it) change and change is unsettling. Joy may not be the emotion you’re feeling right now.
I’m speaking from experience, having felt a whole mix of emotions during this pandemic, there was one that eluded me and that was my good friend, joy. As we began to reemerge it seemed that nature speaking through the weather wanted us to stay inside.
I felt my spirit dwindling and in TCM, our Spirit resides in the Heart, and all emotions stem from the heart. So, our Spirit is speaking to us through our emotions, guiding us, showing us “what lights us up” and that which makes us feel “burnt-out” (see the association with the fire element. Those Traditional Chinese Mediciners* were wise).
I stopped what I was doing and took myself on a Joy Ride™**. The purpose of which was to reconnect with my Spirit and to do that I needed to feel Joy. Stress and depression may not be states of being we aspire to but in their familiarity, they can provide comfort. We can become addicted to them as we know them so well. However, the pursuit of joy is a controversial one. It would require us to RELAX. And what would people think if we just relaxed a little bit more and did what we wanted, what WE LIKED? What if we did the things that we enjoy? I know, madness, right?
However, I highly recommend you try your own Joy Ride.
My Joy Ride took me to:
Relaxville, a wonderful place. I always mean to take a trip here but I’m often too busy doing other things. I used Sarah McCrum’s meditations from Energy On Demand: Master Your Personal Energy and Never Burn Out to get me there which I highly recommend. I always leave Relaxville with a full tank of fuel.
Reduce consumption, in any capacity but particularly in an area you over-consume, wherever that may be — the news, shopping, eating, drinking, etc. For me, it was social media. It definitely has its plus sides (do you follow me? 😉 ) but too much of it and you can get lost in other people’s curated lives and lose sight of your own, REAL life.
Creativity Central. Self-expression in the form of writing or drawing. Let it be for you, rather than for anyone else. It’s less about creating a masterpiece and more about creating personal master peace (thank you).
Indulge-upon-the-senses – touch, taste, sound and smell – I mean, what are they there for, if not to be enjoyed? I indulged in many sensual things, one being doTERRA’s Wild Orange essential oil (I love citrus scents). It’s a good oil to use in the pursuit of joy as it promotes feelings of abundance, playfulness, creativity, generosity and joy. Who doesn’t want a bit of that? I put a few drops in a spray bottle with water and spritz it whenever I needed a pick-me-up. It’s a good one to have around.
And if all else fails, have you tried smiling? It’s been proven that you can’t be unhappy with a smile on your face. Try it. See?
Lastly, on a more serious note, when in the sun, always take protection. You don’t want to get burnt. That’s not fun.
Buckle up and enjoy the ride and send me a postcard.
*this is not a word. I made it up.
**yep, I’m Trade Marking that term.