In our quest for self-improvement sometimes we can encounter challenges in life or go through times of just feeling flat. This can be due to fatigue, going through a time of purification or healing, some event in our lives or just the influences from the environment.
Having a good routine can help you to pass though these times without dropping all the positive activities that you usually do when feeling good and also helps you to maintain some stability. A regular routine of meals, exercise and sleep will ensure a consistent state of energy and more emotional stability.
Ayurveda understands that everything can be understood by the theory of doshas. Doshas are governing principles found all throughout nature and also in your physiology. Your proportion of doshas and also your current state of imbalance will play a part in how you react to stressful times or periods of upheaval.
Vata dosha is like the wind and governs all movement and communication; people with a high proportion of Vata are lighter in build, quick in their thoughts and actions and are more easily thrown off balance by change. Pitta dosha has the qualities of the fire and is responsible for all energy and metabolism. People with a predominance of Pitta have a strong digestive system, tend to be driven and passionate and can become aggravated by excess heat, spicy food and stimulants. Kapha dosha is made up of earth and water and has the qualities of being stable, sticky, cold and moist. It governs all structure and lubrication and people with more Kapha in their nature tend to have a bigger build, good endurance and can feel congested or heavy if they eat too much or don’t exercise.
Understanding the Ayurvedic theory of doshas can help to explain how we feel and more importantly how to create balance in our physiology.
When Vata is out of balanced we tend to feel anxious and find it hard focus. Vata is naturally changeable and we may experience this in our moods, digestion and energy levels. Stressful situations may result in feelings of restlessness and the desire to keep constantly busy or entertained. When there is too much Vata in the physiology it is easy to forget to eat or sleep, only to later fall in a heap from exhaustion and lack of nourishment. Having a good routine and getting enough rest is vital to Vata types when going through a challenging time. Vata is pacified by touch so a hug or a warm oil massage can be very soothing when feeling overwhelmed or frazzled.
Excess Pitta can bring irritability and the tendency to be overly critical. Pitta types may also find it hard to sit still and just wait it out in a crisis, preferring to rush around and try and fix everything with aggressive phone calls and micromanagement. Walking in nature and having time off will help to ease the intensity of Pitta. It is advisable to reduce or avoid stimulants such as alcohol and caffeine as they will literally add fuel to the Pitta’s already fiery nature.
Excess Kapha can make us feel lethargic and depressed. When Kapha is out of balance it may feel easier to just stay in bed and avoid dealing with the problem. While taking time out for rest and reflection is important, Kapha types need to balance this with regular exercise and mental stimulation. Kapha is heavy and sticky by nature and is therefore increased by eating sweet, rich cold foods. So while it may be tempting to drown your sorrows in a tub of ice cream you will feel better having a brisk walk or even a spicy curry.
You can’t always control what happens in your life, but you can make decisions that will help you to cope with life’s challenges.
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