This morning I stopped at my daughter’s house for a visit. I found her kneeling in her living room, a bandana around her head, surrounded by boxes, dust and chaos. We talked for a few minutes before I said I was going home to write my blog for the week. As I left, I asked, “Molly, do you have any ideas for my blog.” She barely looked up from her tasks as she replied, “Yes, I do, how about staying sane when you are moving?”
Of course I laughed as I scurried out of her house before she could put me to work on some onerous chore. But, I thought, “She does have a pretty good idea.”
How do we maintain sanity throughout all of the changes life tosses our way; moving being one of the most disruptive?
Routine keeps our physiology in balance. The body needs to sleep at approximately the same time every night and needs to be fed with regularity. Exercise should be done at approximately the same time of day too. Regularity in routine keeps the body in balance.
When we go through a time of transition our routine falls apart. Physically we develop imbalances, psychologically we become ungrounded and we lose our spiritual anchor. The totality of our being is disrupted by transitions. Whether the transition signifies a happy or a sad time matters not.
In addition, Ayurveda informs us that we digest experience as well as food. Some of us have optimal emotional digestion and others have slower digestive abilities. Haven’t you noticed that some people seem to bounce back from life challenges more quickly than others? An experience is no different from a loaf of bread. Both have to be taken in, absorbed, assimilated, digested and integrated into the physiology. Undigested experience leaves a toxin residue causing cloudy thinking and an inability to move toward the next experience in a fresh and clear manner. If our doshas are in balance we will be better able to digest experience in an optimal manner.
According to Ayurveda change can trigger an imbalance in Vata dosha. Since we tend to lean in the direction of our imbalances once an imbalance occurs it can worsen because of our life style. For instance, moving can trigger a disruption in routine, leading to a tendency to become increasingly irregular in daily habits. Vata dosha becomes disturbed as a result of too much activity and not enough rest. Excess activity stirs up the air that composes Vata, essentially turning a breeze into a tornado. From a Western medical perspective, this means that the nervous system is in a state of hyper –excitability. A prolonged state of hyper-excitability can lead to an eventual collapse of the nervous system. In these cases depression can ensue.
Psychologically and emotionally moving literally displaces us. Newness signifies change, and adjustment to change is demanding on one’s entire being: physical, emotional, mental, and spiritual. Furthermore, change and the demands of adjustment tax the physiology—-the nervous, endocrine, immune, and digestive systems. Maintaining an Ayurvedic lifestyle is of the utmost importance during a time of change. This lifestyle will help you to stay in balance and make a smooth adjustment to your new environment. The better you feel the smoother things will go!
Eating regular meals, even during a time of transition is important. Eat your food hot and make lunch the largest meal of the day. Find time to continue your exercise routine, to meditate and remember that an oil massage is comforting and pacifying for Vata dosha. Above all, don’t allow yourself to become exhausted. Getting a lot done on one day but skipping sleep and becoming fatigued isn’t helpful in the long run. Take your time with all those tasks on your list. Remember to sleep, and you will feel energized and will accomplish more in the long run. Remember that transition times are times of danger. But if you take care to prevent depleting your nervous system you will arrive at your destination with a smile on your face, ready to embrace your new environment with enthusiasm.
I think I will close this blog here and hop in my car and go help Molly pack a couple of boxes!
Be well and if you are moving take care!
Image courtesy of http://www.everydayminimalist.com/?p=2766