- watercolor by Kimberly Rex
The dark months can create challenges for getting enough sun and Vitamin D. Some issues associated with limited sunlight and Vitamin D3 deficiencies are associated with rheumatoid arthritis, thyroid issues, Seasonal Affective Disorder, depression, fatigue and other disorders. That’s why full spectrum light and energizing your body for greater absorption of light is essential. Whether it’s winter or just feeling dark, this article will give you some natural modalities to absorb more light!
Light is one of the major nutrients for the body-mind. It is food for creating energy for health and enhancing your mood. When you increase the amount of light you absorb through your eyes, the body-mind moves into a higher state of coherence. Even visualizing a color feeds your body-mind system including your emotional and mental attitude.
Here are 12 natural, easy and fun ways to increase your energy, sense of well-being and mood during the dark months.
1. Use colors to brighten up.The use of pink, yellow, and reds stimulate the adrenal glands and produces dopamine. Wear these colors to give yourself a lift.
2. Brighten your space with flowers and scents. Gazing at flowers has been proven to enhance happiness. It is a wonderful way to bring the light processed through nature inside.
3. Use natural scents to pamper your five senses. Natural aromas that remind of sweet foods set off endorphins that impact our sense of feeling good. Medical experiments have shown that vanilla fragrance reduces stress and anxiety and has an impact on the emotional brain. Rose and licorice scents help when you feel overwhelmed. Lemon is invigorating and refreshing. Lavender helps with insomnia and helps you relax. Incorporate cinnamon or vanilla in your cooking. The sweetness we associate with these smells bring in Earth Element (summer), and are mood-altering in all their associations with sweetness.
4. Eat foods that support good moods.
- Include eating and drinking citris in the morning. The Vitamin C lowers the stress hormone, cortisol. Add lemon to your cup of green tea to increase the effects of the antioxidents. Mix red peppers into your salads.
- Eat violet foods. They contain Vitamin D. On the list are all kinds of berries including blueberries, elderberries, and blackberries. Eat eggplant and grapes. Eat whole foods around the color wheel for the full spectrum. * Color Code by James Joseph, et al details how to eat a full-spectrum diet.
- Munch on some crunchy foods. This could be the reason why all the people I know LOVE to go to the movies on rainy days! You see the crunchiness of the chewing popcorn stimulates a nerve that signals the brain to release some mood-enhancing chemicals. The mouth has more nerve ending localized in one area of the body. Eat a whole apple or snack on sunflower seeds to energize your day.
5. Create an indoor garden of herbs for cooking. Not only will smell and touch of these plants connect you to energizing fragrances, but will also create mood-enhancing serotonin* from touching the soil.
6. Visualize yourself in a warm and sunny place. Imagining something is an internal process which connects you directly to the experience. Play some music that enhances the experience whether it is Caribbean, Hawaiian, or sounds of waves or nature. Visualization will create moving into relaxation on all levels.
7. Keep moving.Life is energy is motion. Find a way to experience the freedom you do have during the summer months for movement in some way. Take a salsa class, go to an indoor pool, walk around the shopping mall with a friend. Meet a friend for a walk, good conversation and cup of tea. Setting up time for movement in the morning triggers an increase in metabolism that lasts into the day. Walking and stretching improves your mood by releasing endorphins, your body’s natural opiates.
8. Listen to music that uplifts. You know the songs that make you want to move and get you singing along. Play Baroque music to support focus, learning and vitality. The interval of a fifth in Baroque harmonizes and energizes! The Brainwave Symphony is a wonderful option.*
9. Spend time with people and pet having fun! Petting your pet can create soothing endorphin response. Make time to be with dear friends! Smiling supports your inmmune system. Work with the Inner Smile Meditation from the book, Free Your Breath, Free Your Live by Dennis Lewis. Think of reasons to smile. Use these memories when you need a pick me up of energy. A few moments go a long way to brighten your day!
10. Get a full night of sleep. Just an extra hour of sleep per night helps protect your heart, and regulates your body’s need for homeostasis and stress relief.
11. Get out into natural or full-spectrum light 5-15 minutes a day. There are a number of products online that make it possible to bring full-spectrum light indoors. Take off your glasses when possible in natural light to drink in those rays!
12. It’s in your hands. Your hands are sub-chakras of the heart. Palming is an exercise that relieves stress in your eyes. Less stress= more light absorbed. It is also deeply relaxing mentally and emotionally. It is best to face natural light for this activity.
- Rest you right hand over your right eye. Allow your fingers to rest over the fingers of your right hand diagonally across your forehead. Cup your left palm over your left eye. Allow your fingers to rest over your forehead diagonally over your other hand. No light should enter. Close your eyes. Relax deeply into the darkness.
- Say out loud or to yourself, “Love,” “Gratitude,” “Faith,” “Thank you,” “Trust” or other positive words.
- Open your eyes in the darkness. You can also take your palms away slightly. Open your eyes in the space and take in color, and then replace your palms to relax.
- When you are ready, slowly take your palms away. Slowly open your eyes to take in the light and beauty of the world around you.
*Serotonin and Dopamine are neurotransmitters associated with supporting positive mood.
Article compilation includes Resonance Repatterning modalities, material from The Role of Music in the 21st Century, Color Code, American Heart Associaton, Brainwave Symphony, and FreeYour Breath, Free Your Life.*