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Tips for Spring health & wellbeing: TCM wisdom

How are you feeling these days? Have you felt any changes to your own health & wellbeing as we move into Spring? Have you felt an increase in your energy, and perhaps a desire to feel lighter - through diet, de-cluttering or Spring cleaning? It's also likely you're feeling the effects of this rising Spring energy in a different way - you may be experiencing migraines, irritability, disturbed sleep, digestive issues and increased physical tension, often in the neck & shoulder area.

According to the teachings of Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM), the energy of the Spring is associated with the Wood Element. The organs concerned are the liver and gallbladder. The Wood element is responsible for the healthy flow of "ki" throughout the body. During the transition to Spring time, the energy needs to rise upwards - just like plants and trees! This same wood energy is also happening in us! It wants to rise upwards, and just get things done!

During the transition, we may experience some of the symptoms I mentioned above. Additionally, if this rising energy is stuck and cannot be expressed, it can manifest as frustration, bitterness and resentment, and even depression.

The ancient wisdom of TCM can help us to navigate the different seasons, in ourselves, as well outside. It can help us to understand ourselves better, and to perhaps make some practical changes in our lives. To support our liver and gall bladder energy, or our Wood element, here's a few tips:

  • Eat plenty of greens, including asparagus, avocado, leafy, bitter ones such as spinach and kale.

  • Clear out that clutter. Making space in our physical environment, also can bring a feeling of clarity and energy in ourselves. You may also get the urge to Spring clean!

  • Get moving! Liver ki loves movement, so any movement you enjoy will help to get stagnant energy circulating.

  • As Madonna says, Express Yourself! When we aren't expressing ourselves, our creative energy stagnates. Engage in any creative activity at all - cooking, dancing, gardening, or whatever you fancy!

  • The time of the Wood element is between 11 pm and 3 am. Try and get to bed before before 11 pm.

  • Lack of flexibility may be associated with Wood element. Regularly stretching the body with an appropriate Yoga practice, helps reduce general tightness and tension.

Getting out in nature, literally stopping and hearing the birds and noticing the growth and abundance around us, is available to us all. This is pure creativity, expression and life itself - the Wood Element in all its glory.

I hope that you enjoy this season of growth, vitality and new life. May you stay strong, and well!

Article Written by Kerry White

Kerry is a Workplace Health & Wellbeing Facilitator, Speaker, Life Coach, Yoga Teacher & Shiatsu Therapist and the founder of Kerry Wellbeing.

Kerry specialises in workplace sessions to help people feel as well as possible, physically & mentally. Through practical and collaborative sessions, Kerry equips people with effective tools and insights to help them deal positively with everyday stress, challenges and common health and well-being complaints (including backache, headaches, fatigue and anxiety).

Her coaching work supports clients to identify, and achieve, meaningful, yet realistic goals.

Kerry has brought her unique practical sessions and talks to numerous top corporates and organisations, including the World Health Organization (WHO) in Geneva, where she worked for many years. She has also held other international corporate roles in sales, MedTech and training. Because she has spent many years working in pressured office-based roles, Kerry understands the challenges many people experience.

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