“If winter comes, can spring be far behind?” Percy Bysshe Shelley
February 1, 2017
As I sit to write this, snow flurries are swirling past my window – Winter has finally arrived in all its glory, which must mean Spring is just around the corner. According to the Chinese calendar, Spring starts in early February which might sound a bit premature, but spring starts well before we can see it. Deep under the soil things are already finding the energy to come out of their winter storage, bulbs are sprouting and seeds are pushing out of their casings as the eternal wheel of the seasons continues to turn.
If you pay attention to your body you may be able to determine when your system picks up the energetic movement of Spring; this can be felt in the body as a fleeting sensation of energy bubbling up from your feet, expanding across your chest, prompting you to take a deep, expansive breath of air and feel wonderfully alive. When you feel it, recognise it as the energy of Spring, the upward, outward, expansive surge of energy that propels us onwards. While the energies of winter can be nourished through your ears, the energy of Spring can be stimulated through your eyes; so take a walk somewhere beautiful, admire art in an interesting gallery – anything that will encourage you to have a sense of seeing the world with new eyes. The energy of Spring can help us to get the ball rolling on things. If you have been planning a new venture, now is a great time to start putting the plan into action as the energetic influence of Spring can be really empowering. If you continue to feel stuck and the surge of Spring energy feels restricted, it might be a good time to seek acupuncture treatment to release the energy and help it to move more freely through the system.
This sense of ‘stuckness’ of Spring energy can often be felt as a sense of frustration, irritability or even a sense of irrational or unprovoked anger. Anger is too easily portrayed as a negative emotion, but the nature of anger comes from the positive energy of Spring, a dynamic, moving force that demands action. This energy is the force that propels us into action - if we are sitting in the gloom trying to read, this is the energy that will drive us to our feet to cross the room and switch on the light, it is the same energy that makes seeds germinate and buds burst. It is this desire for movement and action that is associated with Spring; this is the energy that can be harnessed to help us to put our plans into action.
To retain emotional balance, Chinese philosophy suggests we want to be comfortable with emotions as they are triggered in us but not hold onto them after the event, not store them in our system. If we find something frustrating, it can help to acknowledge that emotion at an early stage, when it is small and gentle; we may say to ourselves or to someone around us that we are experiencing some frustration. The transformation from mild frustration to anger happens when we feel uncomfortable with the emotion, when we try to conceal it, or hold it inside; at that point the emotion becomes more irrational and pathological, something that has the potential to damage the energetic balance. Acupuncture can help to release some of this unsettling energy, restoring a sense of calm and balance to the system.
As we move into Spring, use the energy of this time of year as a springboard to help you to put your plans into action, this is the time to get the ball rolling. Use the natural energy of the season to your advantage, it can help to invigorate you and energise your actions, making it easier for you to achieve your goals. Happy New Year – we are now in the year of the Fire Rooster.
Alexandra O’Connor Holicty Acupuncture, Maldon & Burnham Osteopathic Clinic