It’s Spring here in New Zealand and at this time of the year, and whilst I love it, I can start yearning for the northern hemisphere, remembering time spent in past years when heading towards the end of the year felt more like a winding down, matching the autumnal season there.
Here in the southern hemisphere, all of a sudden, the growth in my garden has taken off. Each day new shoots have rioted forward, leaves have burst open from nowhere, the aroma of the orange blossom, jasmine, flowering rosemary and geranium as I step out the back door is potent. It entices my senses to take notice and be part of this celebration of feeling alive and renewed. However, it’s common to feel that we are reaching toward the end of the year with nature’s energy perhaps not matching our own.
For many of the people I talk to, they are feeling a deep sense of depletion and wondering how they’re going to find more energy to get them through. Many are girding themselves for this final stretch towards the festive season, the promise of a summer holiday and the immense busyness that comes with the end of the school, work and calendar year beckoning. Not to mention all the responsibilities we take on to prepare to celebrate.
If your energy levels need a boost and you don’t quite know how you’re going to make it to the perceived ‘finish line’, may I encourage you to pause and find some small moments of rest that don’t feel too onerous? Seemingly small acts can have a great effect on the regulation of your nervous system and sense of wellbeing. Finding moments to rest in the midst of a busy life can help you reach summer feeling balanced and that you have some reservoirs of energy to enjoy the season and the commitments you have.
Here are 10 simple ways to recharge your batteries as we head towards the end of the year.
- Breathe. Breathing deeply into your diaphragm is one way we can manually switch on the rest and repair arm of our nervous system, allowing us to recover and recharge. Perhaps set an hourly timer to take a few deep breaths during the day, or take the moment to breathe deeply when you’re sitting in your car at a red traffic light.
- Bare feet on the ground. Now that the weather is warmer it’s more enticing to go outside. Once a day get your bare feet on the earth and find pleasure in wiggling your toes in the warm grass or earth or sand on the beach. We are quite literally an electrical being ‘earthing’ ourselves.
- Legs up. Find a quiet safe place and get your feet above your heart. You could lay on the floor and put your legs up on a chair or over the end of the bed. Your circulatory system will thank you for trying this one, with the pose helping to renew blood and lymphatic circulation and relaxing the neck and back muscles.
- Give your senses a rest. Can you give yourself a cut off time for all technology and screens an hour before you go to bed? Can you fall back in love with reading a real book or magazine? Can you enjoy your lunch without scrolling?
- Take a nap. A nap is like a little energy shot to bridge the cognitive and physical ‘low battery’ we can all experience in the middle of the day.
- Create boundaries. You don’t always to have to be available. Be conscious of how you curate your calendar at this time of the year. It helps to know if socialising fills or empties your cup and plan according to what is going to serve you best. If you know that you will feel more depleted after socialising, make sure you have time afterwards for quiet so you can recharge, or set a time limit for how long you’ll stay at an event or gathering. Give yourself permission to schedule time for pauses and rest.
- Increase your hydration. With the warmer months increasing your hydration helps regulate your body temperature, supports brain function and mood, and keeps our joints lubricated and our digestion smooth. Water steeped with herbs such as mint can delight the tastebuds.
- Create space around the information you receive. We have so much information coming at us, more than we can process. And this ramps up the closer we get to the festive season, which can lead to a sense of unrelenting overwhelm. Take some time to curate what information reaches you.
- Can you book a rest day or schedule rest time? For me that would include a break from technology, no one else in the house, beautifully nourishing food, allowing myself an afternoon nap, a gentle walk, and nothing on the to-do list for the day.
- Invest in seasonal wellbeing. We know that this time of the year is busy. If you want to renew your felt sense of deep relaxation that can carry you through the build up to the festive season and summertime, join me for a session either in person or online.
You can find more information about sessions times here:
Life is busy, especially at this time of the year. So, start small and rest well. From a place of rested-ness, you can show up for yourself and loved ones around you in the best possible way.