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Tis the season to look after yourself

To reiterate something I probably say every winter, this is the season to rest and recharge. Shorter days are for more sleep, keeping warm and curling up with a good book. 

As much as I’m not crazy about bleak, damp, grey days, or westerly winds, I appreciate the balance and the need for a season of downtime. It’s also a welcome change from heat and humidity. After we had a 29 degree day recently it was reassuring to know that the cooler weather was coming back, at least for a while. 

I think it’s vital to honour this seasonal shift. In today’s world it’s easy to be ‘on’ all the time, or to even feel guilty for slowing down or taking time for yourself.  If you need permission to say ‘no’, be lazy or unsociable, go to bed early, or sleep in, Mother Nature gives it to you in spades right now. 

The trouble with being constantly on call or always busy is that it runs down your reserves. Eventually you’re out of juice and have nothing left to give. In the last 12 months I’ve written a book on older women’s health (it should emerge later this year with any luck). In it, one of the ideas I’ve looked at is in relation to keeping our personal energy levels topped up. 

American author Michelle Segar refers to this as our ‘fuel tank’. With a full or fairly full tank we’re in a good mood, feel energetic and clear-headed, and do a decent job of managing the ups and downs of everyday life. But when the needle falls below half-full, our health and resilience suffer. 

It’s not just colds and other immune system issues that show up. Everything’s connected, so when your fuel tank is down you can also be more susceptible to things like achy joints or injuries, which you mightn’t link to rest, sleep or energy.

So before winter disappears make time for some serious self-care.

Photo Source: Gratisography

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Wednesday, July 27, 2016 | Rhonda Anderson