The year is speeding merrily along, one set of bank holidays has come and gone and now we're all preparing for a glorious new season of colours (and if it rains, make sure your umbrella is a cheerful one).
How do you feel today?
Someone asked me the other day if I was always cheerful and the simple answer is yes. Certainly there are days when I’m more tired from restless sleep or tired from dealing with inconsiderate people but I make a conscious effort to not let it affect my whole day.
I see red just like anyone else but I don’t paint my entire being with it. This hasn’t always been the case, it could be that I’m growing milder as I get older but I think it’s also because I have a very good structure around me. I thought I’d share with you some things that I do that I feel have definitely benefitted me so that I can spend time appreciating the people and things that deserve my attention.
Eat with the seasons
Some people may say I’m being finicky here but with society rumbling towards a digital world of technology and statistics it’s even more important to do our best to keep in touch with the tangible, natural world. Now I’m not willing to give up double glazing and energy saving light bulbs but I feel my mind and body benefits from trying to calibrate myself with the seasons, especially when it comes to food and produce. It may be arbitrary nowadays when food can be grown in greenhouses or imported all year round from other countries, but there is a simple pleasure of eating with the seasons. Somehow it just doesn’t seem right to have strawberries in January or asparagus in November. Try this simple seasonality table from BBC Good Food magazine or use this fun guide from eatseasonably.co.uk.
Exercise your green thumb
There is nothing more calming and rewarding than nourishing plant life. It doesn’t matter if you grow vegetables or flowers, or whether you have just a small balcony or a tiny radiator to balance one plant on, a plant always brings a smile and rest your eyes. Watching a tiny bud grow into a flower that may later bear fruit, or seeing a little green shoot unfurl into a strong and steady stalk with dark green leaves is something I look out for everyday. If you have a not-so-green thumb or travel a lot, then I definitely recommend getting a Zanzibar Gem, Zamioculcas zamiifolia, a plant virtually indestructible that only needs sporadic watering (I water mine about 5-6 times a year) and can survive in very low light.
Get rid of clutter
Sherlock (played by Benedict Cumberbatch) refers to his mind as a mind palace and the inverse is also true: your home is your mind. A comfortable living space is a healthy mind. Whether you are a collector or a minimalist, the key thing is to rid clutter on a regular basis. For me, I naturally find myself decluttering my home every few weeks or so. Sometimes it’s just a quick burst of sorting our paperwork that can be shredded or recycled. Other times it’s a whole afternoon sitting in my reading corner seeing which books I haven’t paid attention to for a while. If I’ve forgotten that something is there, then most likely I don’t need it anymore. This isn’t quite a spring clean and it should be pleasant but the aim is to make sure that everything in your home deserves to be there and has a place.
(Re)learn something new
I’ve always had reservations about cycling in London, in fact if I’m not out in the open away from roads, street furniture, people, everything else, then I probably won’t get on a bike. This is a shame so I’m taking lessons to brush up on my cycling skills so that I can take advantage of the longer sun hours. It may seem silly to be learning how to ride again but it’s even sillier to not pursue something just because I may look silly.
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If you enjoyed this, then be sure to visit the blog The Happy Acupuncturist to read more articles, tips and health news.
Spring is dandelion season
Dandelions are at most tender and most delicious in spring but that shouldn’t stop you from having it all year round. My boyfriend’s father forages for them and always has a batch drying ready to be used. Dandelion supports healthy liver function and is packed with calcium, iron, fiber, vitamins A, C, E and K and powerful antioxidants such as beta-carotene and lutein.
This article shows you different ways you can add dandelion into your day, from salads to sautéed dishes. My favourite though, is good old dandelion tea, infusing it in hot water. Remember, it’s a diuretic, so don’t have it too late in the day or you’ll be going to the bathroom all night.
3 yoga poses for tired, achy feet
Our feet are so important to our structural integrity and it doesn’t help that they take such abuse every day, whether it’s standing on our feet all day, exercise or just from wearing uncomfortable shoes. Try these moves at the end of the day to help relieve tired, achy feet.
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If you have been kind enough to refer someone to me – I want to say a big THANK YOU. That is the highest compliment and it’s warmly appreciated every time.
Other news: May bank holidays
There are two bank holidays this month (5 and 26 May) so use them to give yourself a recharge if you didn’t get a chance over the Easter break.
There will be no clinic on either of these days. Contact The Hale Clinic 020 7631 0156 or Neal’s Yard Remedies, King’s Road 020 7225 2050 or just email me to book an appointment.
See this picture of the “blood red moon” in Auckland, New Zealand that happened on 15 April. It wasn’t visible to us in the UK (happened near sunrise) but mark 28 September 2015 (2-4am) in your calendar now (!) for the next time you can see it in the UK night sky.
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Take care and be safe.
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