Wednesday, March 1, 2023

How will you enter March? In like a lion out like a lamb?

We’ve made it to March; the big tease before Spring fully blooms. While Thomas Fuller’s proverb can be traced back to 1732, it has stood the test of time in terms of both the weather and our health. Through the last few years, our nervous systems have been through the wringer. Is yours stuck in the lion mode? Or has this winter hibernation enabled you to find some lamb energy?

Made up of the Sympathetic (fight or flight) and Parasympathetic (rest and digest) systems, the nervous system strives for balance between the lion and the lamb. However, like the March weather, we may find ourselves in an extended period of lion mode; on edge and defensive, we find ourselves fighting or fleeing. As both our inner lion and lamb play vital roles in homeostasis, the key is using them to our advantage, not fighting against them.

To know where you are at, you can observe yourself without judgment. Do you snap in exacerbation at a simple question? Have your shoulders merged with your ears and your knuckles turned white on the steering wheel? Does your body crave the comfort of your bed as your mind spins with past, current, and future events all to be solved in the solace of the night? To balance the scales between these two necessary systems, we must recognize where we are living in the continuum.

Though the tools of technology can help, it can feel like you are being screamed at to calm down - find your inner lamb; but finding your inner quiet and elixir isn’t as simple as the wellness community wants you to believe. This is where individuality comes in place; what behaviors can you add that bring you a sense of peace? If you already know you love to garden, dance, sing loudly in the shower, or create a small nook in your home that allows you a meditative practice - start there. And remember laughter can diffuse your inner lion, making space for your inner lamb. Finding a balance in yourself starts with your first intentional breath.

The wonderful thing is that this can be done anywhere; anytime. If the Lion roars appropriately, applaud this fight or flight. Be gracious with yourself wherever you find yourself this March; and may April bloom with ease.

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