Early summer has such an excitement to it.
It feels like the curtains being drawn back, birds chirping wildly and the warmth of sun on your skin beckoning you to rise and shine. We are walking through the doorway into the second half of the year.
It brings back memories of the last day of school and the sense of freedom and endless possibilities that brought with it.
I believe every season carries messages, and correlating symbolism that shows you how to live the way nature intended. This post is my interpretation of that.
The official first day of summer varies depending on who you ask. Some consider it to be on memorial day when the pools open, some will say it's when school lets out, and others will tell you it’s on the summer solstice. I’m in the solstice camp.
It is the longest day of the year, when the sun reaches it's peak and falls on June 21 in the northern hemisphere.
The word solstice means “Sun stands still” You can think of this as the pause at the top of the inhale. That moment of fullness and stillness before you begin to exhale. This is a time the sun is in it’s peak power. And you as well.
Solstices are a good half way mark to pause and check in with yourself about how your spending your time and if it's in alignment with your true intentions.
Ask yourself if the way your living is making you feel good. If the answer is no, seek change. What makes you happy and feeds your soul? Do more of those things. Don't over think it.
Check out this post for more info and ideas: Celebrate Summer Solstice
Element of Fire
As the days get hotter and hotter, our internal fires are also burning strong. This can help us to feel more energized and motivated then we normally feel in the colder months. We can use this energy to help us move forward with our goals, to take action and to simply feel confident.
The element of fire correlates to transformation. Fire has the power to burn away impurities, cleansing and transforming into something new
The phoenix cannot transform and rise up from the ashes until it goes through the fire and allows the old parts of themselves to die.
Solar Plexus Chakra:
Our solar plexus can be thought of as the sun inside our bodies.
It is our fire
Our sense of who we are
Our outward moving energy
Our Self esteem, and
Our Sense of power.
How open or blocked you are in this chakra affects how you choose express yourself to the outside world.
Over active Solar Plexus: domineering and arrogance, control issues
Under active Solar Plexus: insecurity and low confidence levels, trouble making decisions
Balanced Solar plexus: feels humbly confident, self-motivated, and has a sense of purpose.
To help bring your solar plexus into balance, try using one of these affirmations and repeat it until you believe it.
Ayurveda is based on principals of three core energies called doshas that govern the seasons. Pitta Dosha rules summer, meaning this is when we have the most accumulation of pitta characteristics.
Over accumulation of pitta energy can have us burning the candle from both ends and cause us to feel irritable, angry, impatient and internal heat. To pacify this imbalance, we want to focus on keeping the body cool, calming the mind and softening our need for control.
Ayurvedic summer food suggestions:
Avoid: hot, heavy, oily and spicy foods
Enjoy: bitter, sweet and astringent tasting foods to keep you cool. Think sweet fruits, smoothies, salads, coconut water, mint and chamomile tea.
On the Mat:
Incorporate lots of resting poses and time for stillness, to help balance out all heat, and desire to rush right into the next pose.
My classes in summer start out engaging and working with the fiery, motivated energy of the season, twisting, hopping, and holding powerful postures. The second half of class focus on a slower, deeper opening and cooling down process of balancing with opposing energy.
During that second half of class I encourage working at a 80% level of effort, coming to your edge and then pulling back some. This allows us to relax and settle in to the pose.
1. Bust out those strong warrior poses to connect to your inner power
2. Be brave and try a new arm balance or inversion. Crow? headstand?
3. Move slower
4. Stay in childs pose, and savasansa poses longer then you would normally.
If you are local, join me on Mondays at Tribe Yoga Center for Seasonal Flow
If you were to compare the cycle of the seasons to the lunar cycle, the height of summer would correlate with the full moon. The full moons are a time of fullness, representing being pregnant with possibilities.
Think of a specific area of your life, or aspect of you that feels like it is in it;’s full moon stage. Where do you feel as if you are reaching a state fullness? Where have you reaches a midway moment of stillness and awe? Where do you feel contentment and gratitude for all you have?
The next summer full moon falls on: Wednesday, July 13, 2022. and goes by the names, blessing moon, buck moon, and berry moon. Honor it by being present with it. Simply taking time to be in and gazing into the moonlight is a simple ritual that can bring you meaning and connection.
More about connecting to the power of the full moon in this post: Full Moon Ritual for Cleansing and Release
Sacred Symbolism: Light
The sun: A reminder to look outward, shine brightly, bask in warmth and celebrate growth
The stars: A reminder of hope and beacons of possibility
The full moon: A reminder to pause, feel grateful, reflect and release
Visualize Inviting light in and letting it fill you up. Let is shine into your darkest corners so you can illuminate your shadows, showing you what is holding you back, and what it is time to let go of.
Don't forget to balance the energy of this time with time for reflection and rest. Take note of any areas that are out of alignment and need self-mothering.
For those who are highly sensitive the energy of peak summertime can be overwhelming. Try to connect to summers waters, whether it's at the pool, a lake, the ocean or the bathtub. Just being around and/or in water has such a soothing effect on the body and mind, especially as the summer fires rage.
Summer solstice blessings!