Friday, March 26, 2010

Spring Detox Starts With Your Heart and Mind

The first day of spring has officially arrived and many of us are already enjoying the welcome return of longer, warmer days. While it’s true that winter might still have a few surprises left for us, there’s no question that now is the time to start preparing our bodies for the budding new season ahead by planning your annual spring detox.

Spring is a transitional season, carrying nature from the inert, conservative state of winter into the high activity of summer. Naturally, the goal of the spring cleanse is to lighten up your system and make it more suitable for these increased physical challenges and activities. I’d like to begin by focusing on ways to prime yourself for the detoxification process both mentally and emotionally.

If you had the opportunity to experiment with meditation and inner reflection during the winter, you’ve likely discovered aspects of yourself that you no longer need to carry and hold onto. So, as part of the cleansing process, it’s always useful to decide what it is you’re prepared to let go of as you move forward into the summer.

An expansive approach to detoxification looks at the "cleanse" as a means of increasing your sense of freedom and openness. We must take the example from nature: Just as the day expands from dawn to dusk and the weather warms with the passage of the seasons, we must strive to allow our perceptions to expand, to look outward and beyond. By doing this, we can find a way to view our lives that allows us to embrace those things that previously troubled us and to overcome those trials that seemed insurmountable before.

Too often in our lives we are simply overwhelmed, loaded to a level that does not allow us to expand our view. Rather, we live moment by moment simply doing. This type of overload is expressed any number of ways—in the physical, emotional, and mental realms. In the case of emotional overload, we may find ourselves getting angry or upset more frequently, while mental overload often manifests itself as reduced clarity and a sluggish thought process. On the physical level, it can be expressed as rashes, allergies, lethargy, joint pain, and so on.

If we examine these overloads, especially on the mental and emotional level, we will usually find that they are a byproduct of our perceptions. Simply put, we have an experience and we react to it. This could be an internal experience, such as a thought or feeling—or it could be an external experience, involving objects or our interactions with the outside world. But ultimately, it is our perception of these internal and external stimuli that creates our experience. In the case of an overload, these experiences tend to be less fulfilling and pleasant, thereby creating greater suffering.

That’s why, when engaging in a cleanse, we should always begin with the ultimate goal of creating greater freedom and opening up, a process during which our overloads are released and discarded. As we detoxify and discard some of these limiting overloads, we find that the same stimulus no longer brings the same response, and that life naturally becomes easier.

In the end, a successful cleanse promises more vibrant physical health as well as new compassion and understanding. Hopefully, this will allow us to move forward into the next season with both a healthy heart and mind.

1 comment:

  1. I love this procedure. Is it safe to try? Thanks for sharing :)