Another sense that we often overlook is sound. Our world is so full of sounds that it can become noise. By focusing on singular sounds, we can encourage a sense of calm and freedom. For example, find a place where you can hear birdsong … then stop walking, close your eyes, breathe, and listen carefully. Allow this natural music to fill your mind and take you to a still place.
In our everyday, we hear a lot of music. We tend to pick the same radio station or music tracks over and over again. Try something different this month. January is a great time to do something new. So why not choose a music genre that you don’t usually hear. And really listen. Stop, close your eyes, breathe, and listen. Allow your brain to engage with the new combinations of notes and tones. This is like exercise for your sense of hearing.
Sound can also play an important role in meditation. The resonance of tones are associated with centres in our bodies. By creating the tone or even just listening to it, we experience a connecting and soothing affect. The word AUM is made up of four tones ahhh-oooh-mmmm – then silence. The first tone resonates in the lower body, the second in the centre body and the third in the head. These are followed by a moment of silence allowing the resonance to flow over your whole self. Usually this is repeated three times. Give it a go!
Colour is not the only thing that can brighten your senses this month. Your sense of smell is a wonderful tool for bringing memories and feelings. It’s really simple – If you are sitting at the breakfast table just stop for a moment, close your eyes and breathe in. What aromas come your way? Perhaps it is coffee with its enlivening scent. Perhaps it is maple syrup that reminds us of warmth. Take moments throughout the day to stop and breathe in. You will be amazed at what comes your way.
To be a bit more deliberate about the scents around you, aromatherapy is a wonderful practice of using natural essential oils to support your mind and emotions. As it is often in bath products, we are familiar with lavender as an oil that brings relaxation. Yet, at this time of year, we may rather need something to brighten us or lift our spirits. Oils that are used to stimulate and increase your energy include orange, lemon and rose. For a quick hit of relief, just open a bottle and breathe deeply. To get a longer lasting effect, consider putting some oils in the bath or using a diffuser.
We can take our sense of smell for granted, but it serves to stimulate our digestive system, arouse us sexually, and warn us of danger. It is strongly linked to our emotional body and memories can be awakened simply by getting a whiff of something we associate with the past. Clear the air in your home to be sure that you are able to take advantage of this sense to support your health and well-being in this month of January!
The weeks between the Winter Solstice and the celebration of Imbolc at Groundhog Day can seem cold, dreary and tiring. Some of us are in debt from the gifting season, some need to lose the 10 lbs brought on by holiday cheer and hibernation from the dark, and others are missing families left back home on the return to regular life. Yet, the Wheel of the Year must turn and we with it.
Bring some Sunshine into your daily life by celebrating the gentle contemplation that this season offers. One of the easiest ways to change your outlook is to change the colours around you. Colours differ because of the interaction with different wavelengths of rays from the sun. Take advantage of this subtle shift to bring some feelings of new energy into your life at this time of year.
Put away the reds and greens of Yule! Replace them with bright blues like the sky, oranges and yellows of citrus fruits, or pinks and purples found in beautiful cloth or flowers. Select a colour spectrum that brings you joy and create a special place for contemplation, meditation or prayer. Close your eyes, breathe in the uplifting air around you and slowly exhale allowing your mind to focus on the colour of your choice. Fill yourself with the colour over several breaths. Then open your eyes and smile. Now … get on with your January day. Bright Blessings.