The first time I came in contact with the practice of Ayurveda was back in 2003 when studying herbalism. In the study of herbs, it was referenced time and time again. Although herbs are valued in many cultures the Veda culture of India had a special connection to their balancing energy.
I was intrigued but also a bit overwhelmed as I began learning about the basic Ayurvedic practices and philosophies. The truth was I was taking it a bit TOO literally and way too much like an instruction manual than a change in lifestyle. I actually set it aside and said to myself “this is too complicated, I do not have time for this right now”.
Thankfully a few years later I decided to revisit this “science of life” and take a fresh perspective. That is when it dawned on me that it was not complicated at all, nor did it take a lot of time. If I moved slowly and implemented some of these practices gradually in my life it would be smooth and easy!
That is what I want for you too. Start with easy changes that feel right to you. Take your time and know that any little change you make today is going to have a HUGE impact on how you feel tomorrow. YES! Even these simple little things can start you on the Ayurveda journey!
Basic Ayurvedic Practices that are Easy to Start
This is just one of the powerful ways that you can naturally build your spiritual and even mental capacities. In addition, meditation brings a self-awareness of the body, mind spirit connection as a whole.
I hear many times people give these excuses when it comes to meditation.
- I do not have time.
- I can’t meditate my brain is too busy.
- I can’t sit still.
- I have too many distractions.
These excuses are often misunderstandings about meditation as a whole. Even the definition of Meditate means to “engage in contemplation or reflection.” It does not ask you to be quiet, sit still and to take a lot of time. In fact, meditation can happen and be planned during routine tasks of the day that you already do!
Yes, there are some deeper forms of meditation done by many that you have likely seen. The vision of a person sitting quietly in a cross-legged position. Incense burning and mystical music playing in the background. Well, how many of us really have the time for all that?
- How about the time to breathe deeply and count? Do you have time for that? Yes. That is a form of meditation.
- How about a few minutes as you lay down at night to breathe deeply and think about your day? Or picture a place of peace and joy after a rough day? Also a form of meditation.
- Taking a nice hot shower or bath and envisioning all your troubles and stress being washed away? You guessed it, also meditation.
- Are you religious and have deep moments of prayers in your day? Also, a type of meditation.
As you can see just there 4 easy examples of how easy meditation can really be. The main part of succeeding in meditation or any practice is INTENT. “I am taking this time to relax and become better connected to myself and my thoughts”. Or anything similar. Even chanting this in your head as you breathe is meditation.
The big part is taking the time to dissociate yourself from the hustle and chaos of the world around you and the cluster of your mind and “breathe”. Relax and allow yourself space inside your mind.
In the future we will explore some greater forms of meditation that are just as easy for anyone to do!
Spending more time in Nature
The best way to be in tuned with nature is to enjoy time spent in it. A walk in the woods, a park or on a beach can be an easy stress reliever and harmonizing way to connect with the natural world. When it is not possible to be outdoors use photos and other forms of imagery to help bring it to you.
This works in hand with meditation as you can combine both of these things in ONE.
You can also create natural connections by spending time with animals, plants and natural elements as well. Do you have a dog or a cat? Perhaps even larger animals like horses, goats or pigs. Spend time with your animal friends. The joy found with these companions is priceless and helps connect us better to nature itself.
This also includes plant life. Gather a few house plants, or plant a few of your own. Having a small indoor garden space or a few plants help to bring that natural connection to nature indoors. I am big on gardening and plants myself. I have a whole site about it here.
Many people including myself have a strong affinity towards gemstones, rocks, and crystals. These natural elements are another easy way to connect us with nature. Even wearing a genuine gemstone or carrying one in your pocket to conveniently rub or admire throughout the day can build this unity with nature itself!
Plenty of Sleep
Our body repairs and rejuvenates itself as we sleep. The lack of regular peaceful sleep disrupts the balance of our body, weakens our immunity, causes problems with mental clarity and speeds up the aging process. We should get 6 to 8 hours of sleep on average that is restful.
I know the resistance I am hearing from my readers already! I had the same to this one because of a genuine problem with restful sleep. One of the amazing things I found though on my journey with basic Ayurvedic practices was that it was starting to come naturally. Introducing meditation before bed helped a lot!
In addition, natural supplements can help those hard to rest individuals like myself. I started taking a hemp derived CBD and using a magnesium sleep lotion that made a GRAND difference in my ability to get plenty of sleep.
There are plenty of other natural ways to boost your sleep as well. I know many people have found aid in noise machines that stimulate nature sounds. Also, a great way to connect with nature. My husband needs the sound of a fan going all season long to help him get a restful night sleep.
There are answers to help your sleep problems!
Body awareness happens when we challenge it physically in routine exercise programs. Adjust your exercise schedule and methods to meet your current physical limitations. For some simple walking, yoga or swimming are a nice moderate to mild routine that can help our overall physical awareness.
Other more physically fit individuals may need a more challenging routine in weight lifting, vigorous runs and etc. It is always important to check with your doctor to determine what exercise is healthy for you.
I have some physical limitations and getting exercise is not always the easiest for me to do. If I am feeling particularly sore on a day I at least try to stretch and move my body the best I can. There is no need to hurt yourself to become in tune with your body just “movement” is the key and awareness of the body itself.
These next 3 basic Ayurvedic practices Are ALL Connected!
Invite spice in your life
Part of the Ayurvedic basic principles involves the introduction of the 6 tastes.
A flavorful diet loaded with the six tastes helps to reach satisfaction both physically through the sense of taste and mentally as stimulation. Focus on trying to bring all the flavors to each meal. They can come in the form of spice or in natural food choices. They also bring a sense of fullness with a meal and reduces overeating.
Herbs and spices are the easiest ways to embrace the 6 flavors. Learning herbs offers a free download of this amazing flavor wheel. It can help you see how each herb relates to the 6 tastes.
Eat the Color of the Rainbow
In addition to spicing up your pallet also seek out natural food sources that are a variety of colors. Choose fruits and vegetables, spices and herbs that are the colors of the rainbow to incorporate in your meal plans. Red, orange to yellow, green, blue to purple and white. Foods vary in color, but the underlying hints of the basic rainbow are present.
Each color spectrum also tends to represent certain enzymes, vitamins and micro-nutrients that our bodies need. Rather than fussing through a bunch of food labels on unhealthy prepackaged food reach for fresh and colorful ingredients! Your body will thank you!
The spice and color will be aids in this, but you can also improve digestion by developing some easy habits.
- Eat when you are truly hungry.
- Consume food at a slow relaxed pace.
- Sit down when eating without distraction of TV or electronics.
- Introduce detoxifying herbs as part of your diet. Like ginger, turmeric, and ashwagandha.
As you can see these 3 are very connected. 6 spices, rainbow of food and improved digestion. They work together in harmony, just as they will work in your body to help you to feel better and more invigorated! PLUS, it TASTES GREAT!
These next two maybe the most difficult challenge yet! Are you up for it?
Use Your energy wisely!
Positive Focused Energy
This may be the hardest to adapt quickly but can create the greatest value to your overall mental and physical balance. Spend more of your energy on acts of love, kindness and value and less time focusing your thoughts and motivation towards physical attainments.
This includes financial status, power, authority, and a desire to be right. This is not to say quit your job and become a missionary or etc. (although if that is your calling please do). Rather it is balancing your energy so that you are giving yourself the time to enjoy life, share it with others and express kindness. Instead of worrying about the next job promotion or a material item you covet, think of those you love and spend time focusing on those nourishing aspects of emotional well-being.
“Hey, Wait Christina, I have ambition to be a great success!” I hear you objecting to this completely! I am not saying give up ambition or a drive to become successful in business or your career. I am asking you not to allow those thoughts and drive to consume you.
- How many times have you been so wrapped up in work that you were too stressed to enjoy a simple evening with friends?
- Too busy with a project that you did not have time to read a story with your child?
- So, focused on a deadline or a goal that you could not sleep or eat right?
This is stressing your energy and disrupting your balance. Know when to shut off your “drive” to place it in park and “experience joy and give joy”.
Make more sense now? I hope so!
Affirmations to Self
This also includes showing these positive energies to “the self” as well. Feed yourself energy loaded with positive thoughts and kindness about you, your life and your goals. Encourage and be kind in your thoughts. Self-deprecating thoughts are energy suckers and deplete your overall well being.
Take the time to appreciate yourself.
One of the ways that you can do this is actually by implementing a healthy life changing choice like Ayurveda in your daily routine. Taking these steps, even if only one at a time is Affirming to yourself that you are worth it, and worthy of the time.
I hope these easy steps help get you started!
Take your time. Do a small introduction and combine other aspects until you develop the habit. Yes, basic Ayurvedic practices become a healthy habit. Before you know it you will feel more in balance and experience a wellness that radiates from all aspects of Mind, Body & Spirit.
I am sure you see a common theme as well. Many of these practices can be combined and used together. That not only makes them easier, but more powerful in how they work. Walking in nature can be meditative, connecting with nature, and exercise. Spice, Rainbow food choice together aid digestion. All or any of these can aid sleep! See the pattern?
As the days grow on site, so will the building of the knowledge of Ayurveda and other naturally powerful practices to help you. I love hearing from you and communicating about this and more. Let’s start a conversation below by leaving a comment for me or in response to another reader.
Together our knowledge grows into Wisdom!
As always …
“Knowledge is the Power to a Better You, Better Health and Unlocking your Natural Power!”