self care,  stress,  Winter,  yin yoga

Choosing Joy

According to Google today is Blue Monday. According to clever people, this day has been calculated as being the most depressing day of the year. This takes into account many factors including the weather, low motivation, time since Christmas and the fact that our New Year Resolutions have become a distant memory.

Whether you believe that today is filled with doom and gloom says more about your mindset than it does about a calculation. With each passing moment we have the opportunity to choose our own perspectives – for better or worse.

The guy who screeched his horn at me while I was on my way to work can be seen from a few different points of view. The first he could have been running late to the hospital, his last chance to see someone he cared for. Another possibility might be that he had a poor sleep the night before and his anger had to be taken out on somewhere. Or maybe he’s just an arsehole who believes that he’s more entitled to drive on the road than I am.

Whichever way I look at this one situation it has nothing to do with me. But I can take it with me, carry it like a backpack and feel down, angry or upset by the incident. Choosing to leave this moment in the past, frees me to move forwards with little regard for the other person – he is not influencing the rest of my day.

And we can do the same with Blue Monday. Yes, the weather isn’t very good, it’s still dark in the mornings and evenings and it does feel as if January will never come to its natural conclusion.

But the weather will improve. The mornings and evenings are getting ever so slowly lighter, and January will soon fade into February, and we will wonder where the time went. We only have to choose how we see things and opt to have a tiny bit of a more positive approach to our days.

With this in mind we can look to Traditional Chinese Medicine to help us bring about a better balance within our mood. This time of year, is all about slowing down, resting and finding stillness, but sometimes we need a bit of movement to clear the way. I’ve designed a short yin yoga sequence for you which incorporates the meridian of the heart with the Fire Element to encourage a feeling of joy.

Finding a sense of joy during the darkest and gloomiest days of the year might be a challenging task, but it is worthwhile. By working with the heart meridian we can begin to restore the free flow of energy through the body, allowing us to decide how we see the world and not to be influenced by a random calculation telling us how we should feel on any given day.

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