Spring! The season of creativity and rebirth!
Everything in nature is starting to shift upwards again after a season of rest and restoration.
It sounds glorious but it is not an easy movement. It can be hard to rise from winter’s sleepy depths. We see this in nature in the oscillation between the glorious warm days and the return of snow and wind. In our own bodies it can feel like an oscillation between bursts of activity (Lets clean the whole house! Lets start that big gardening project! Let’s start a new business project!) and moments where we collapse, snuggled on the couch with tea and a book, a whole new season of our favorite TV show or a nap. Its not a linear process this springing up.
If we had to push through the winter (especially if we have been fighting off colds and flus) we might not feel rested enough to fully rise. We might even feel downright stuck. When everything in nature starts to call us to activity this can feel like frustration or a sense that we “Just-can’t-get-it-together- damn it.” It can also show up as tightness in the body, headaches or digestive issues or even just stress.
How can you help your spring energy to rise? Having a small creative practice can really help get this energy moving and smooth things out. Whether you are feeling stuck or simply trying to deepen spring’s movements, embracing creativity can help get things flowing. Here are a few simple way to move that Qi in a creative way.
1. Draw, color (or doodle)! Pull out some crayons and draw the way you did when you were a kid. Or try playing with one of those adult coloring books with amazing beautiful pictures to color. Simply taking 10 minutes to do this when I’m feeling stuck can shift my perspective and gets me moving in the right direction. (As you can see from the photo my son was lovingly supporting that movement in me this weekend!)
2. Write! Use your words to do more than write memos or to do lists. Tell a story, write a poem or describe something beautiful or heartbreaking. For inspiration, community and fun you can join a writer’s group (or other creative circle). There are many wonderful ones led by talented writers. One of my favorite poets (who I am lucky enough to call friend) Jena Schwarz is running an on-line class to celebrate National Poetry Month in April—a month of prompts to explore poetry (as a reader or a writer) and a fun safe space to share for less than $30. If that feels too scary, you can adopt your own writing practice Julia Cameron, who developed a program to help blocked creatives called The Artist’s Way, talks about a practice called Morning Pages. Every morning set a timer and write stream of consciousness for 10 minutes. It doesn’t have to be good and it can even be downright bad! The idea is just to get going. This works even if you don’t think of yourself as a “writer”. It can free your mind up to creatively tackle whatever the day has in store.
3. Sing! In the shower, in the car, along with the radio. Singing not only is good for the soul but it requires us to breathe deeply (without even trying!) and that I good for the spirit too! To get really inspired, join a Community Sing like the one run by Dr. Ysaye Maria Barnwell (formely of the amazing Sweet Honey in the Rock) or explore other community sing groups. You can find them on MeetUp or advertised through local arts groups.
And of course, if you are feeling stuck or too tired to rise, an acupuncture treatment can help. Working together we can identify where life energy is getting stuck and help you create that life you have been dreaming about.
Meg Casey, M.Ac.,L.Ac. is an acupuncturist in Silver Spring, MD where she helps her patients create new possibilities to thrive. To schedule an appointment with Meg or explore if acupuncture is right for you, you can reach out to her via email at firstname.lastname@example.org, reach out via the website or call her at 301.408.9873 For more inspiration you can like Meg Casey Acupuncture on Facebook!