Balance Your Chemistry

Does anyone else in this world still keep a paper calendar? My phone is less than smart, so I still use a white board on my fridge to keep track of our weekly comings and goings (and meals so I don’t get to lunch on a Wed. or supper on a Thurs. and go ummmmmmm, what are we going to eat???) and a wall calender to keep the “big picture” in mind for each month. While I am more than OK traveling through this world without a smart phone, this whole seeing the big picture every time I walk through my kitchen, when the big picture is quite, well, busy and large, is starting to freak me out a wee bit. I would take a picture and post it but I’m afraid it would just freak you out, too. I mean, what has gotten into September this year?! And as my hubs so correctly (and alarmingly) pointed out, we don’t even have kids in activities yet! Yikes!

To make my calendar anxiety worse, October looks to be even less calm, at least for the first week or so. I’ve been scheduled for a month now to head to Omaha the first weekend of October to my first prenatal yoga teaching module (OMG, cannot even properly express to you how excited I am about that! but hello, textspeak, bold, and italics!), and this last week has brought at least four, if not five, opportunities/events to my attention for that same weekend. Obviously I can’t do them all – actually I can’t do any of the extras because my module will last the whole weekend and, sorry (totally not sorry), but prenatal is where it’s at! – even though I totally wish I could. Two of them are yoga teaching offers, kulas of sorts, that would have been awesome, and another is fun craftacular event where I could get my down with my Pinterest self, and another a fall festival, but holy wow, people. I just can’t be in six places at one time! I’m even missing my ten-year reunion (how can ten years gone by even be possible?) at Doane which I was really looking forward to because the campus is gorgeous and has changed a lot in the last decade, plus it would have been fun former roommate time with my Suite 101 girls, but again, I say to you HOLY WOW. There’s just too much going on right now!

And so it goes with Fall. Perhaps you’ve been feeling it, too? If you been to any of my yoga classes in the last few weeks (or if you come in the next few), you’ve heard me talk about the upcoming change in seasons and how much it impacts us, so it is not like I am surprised to be feeling overwhelmed and super busy like this, but wow (which is apparently the only word I have today to describe life today). I need me some grounding and quick!

The reason behind all this scatteredness I’m feeling (and maybe you, too?) can be tied back to the doshas of Ayurveda. I won’t go into much detail because I’m not well-versed enough to teach you much, but basically Ayurveda tells us that there are three types of people in this world – Pitta (fire), Vata (wind), and Kapha (earth). Each of us has a primary dosha (mine is Pitta) and usually a secondary (Vata in my case). Each dosha responds to certain times of day, weather, food, activity, etc. and when your dosha is balanced, life is great. If your dosha gets off kilter, though, your world can seem to be spinning out of control. Enter Vata and the soon-to-be-here Fall. The winds of the season and change can mess with anyone, regardless of dosha, but if you have some Vata in you, hold on and look out! It’s so easy to get caught up and swept away this time of year. A teacher of mine from Omaha posted a link on facebook today called the Vata Manifesto and I’m going to take it to heart and echo/quote my yoga buddy, Kate, (who is also a kick-asana mama, yogini, and blogger – could we have been better matched as partners this summer?!), because my Vata is obviously spinning out of control right now. Just ask my calender. Every.damn.day….tons of appointments and meetings and classes and just whoa. While much of this is an abundance of joy-bringing activity, I know I need to tread lightly. I’ve got to find ways to bring myself back down or I’m going to need a loan to buy a lot more coffee because I’m going to fall back into the sleepless patterns pretty quickly if I’m not careful.

Take last night, for example. I had a great evening teaching two yoga classes at avani, the second of which was all about calming the body to enhance sleep. Well, clearly I did not take my own lesson to heart because when I got home, I started doing, doing, doing things around the house while I waited for B to call it a night and then when we finally did turn in, I realized pretty quickly that, just like a young child, I had totally missed my sleep window. Before long it was 1:30 a.m. and I was still awake (and planning yoga sequences) and then it was 6:23 a.m. and HD was coming in to say “Good Morning.” Oof. Let’s just say I realllllly enjoyed the mocha I got from Starbucks this morning after my chiro appt. in GI! But really, I can’t afford to do that all the time and my fuzzy brain today is enough of a return to last year’s sleep hell that terrifies me into wanting to avoid a Vata-induced pitfall this Fall.

So. How to do this? Fabulous question. I think the biggest helper for me will be shutting it (i.e. the computer!) down at night. Not checking anything or sending anything just because it pops in my head. I can make a note of things I don’t want to forget and I can do it the next morning. Also, taking the 20-30 minutes each evening that are required to clean up the kitchen and get the house ready for the next day are going to be vital. When I skip that stuff because “I’m tired” it later comes back to haunt me when I am not sleeping and thinking, “Well, poo. I should have just done it because now I’m really tired and will feel even worse tomorrow and will still have those dishes to do/c.r.a.p. to pick up, etc.!” And more than anything, I have to breathe and just trust my breath. I have to know that my body can and will slow down and I will sleep. I can calm my Vata and enjoy this beautiful time of change in the world and in myself. Because let’s face it – my calendar has changed in the best way possible this September because I’ve been so blessed with teaching opportunities right out of the teacher-training gate. The trick now, of course, is learning how to strike a balance so I can value these external blessings while still honoring my quiet, introvert.for.life soul.

I’ll let you know if I come across any good resources for staying grounded as the winds increase with the season change. This link, for example, is good, although it is not the same link mentioned above, for balancing Vata. Please share your ideas with me, too!

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