Vital force, Chi, Prana, call it what you will the idea that there an invisible lifeforce that determines our health, happiness and surroundings has been around for a very long time.
The Chinese symbol for Chi (qi) is made up of two smaller symbols; one that can be translated into vapour steam or gas and one that means hard and solid ‘uncooked rice.’
The closest match for translation of ‘Chi’ into English is arguably the word ‘energy.’ Energy can be both invisible and immaterial, like a sound wave, but also solid matter like a tree trunk (or hard rice), as is the understanding of modern day physics.
I’m sure we can all do with a little more energy in our daily lives. Here are a few easy suggestions to maximise your Chi-energy flow,
Focusing on your breath centers you in the current moment and oxygenates your cells. The more oxygen that is available to nourish your cells the more energy your cells will produce. Deep breathing in meditation allows our stress response hormone, cortisol, to reduce. This releases muscle tension, improves digestion (and therefore nutrient assimilation) and increases lymphatic flow (boosting immune function and helping you feel lighter.)
A moving meditation. Yoga is a series of poses that are designed with the intention of channeling prana through heaven and earth. I know when I do a yoga sesh I feel lit up from the inside. I consider yoga practice imperative to giving good shiatsu, which is about optimising the flow of chi in the recipient. Not only does Yoga make by body, core and posture strong, yoga fills me with good vibes better enabling me to practice good shiatsu.
3. Healthy Healing Nutritious Food Choices
You know how some foods sound like a good idea but after consumed not so good? You become tired and want to lie down. Energy goes to 0. I find eating in tune with my body to be the best thing I can do for myself on a day-to-day basis. For me this means eating fresh and natural wholefoods that are in season, and mostly local. Eating gracefully and mindfully until you are just about full, and avoiding anything that is overly processed, refined, high in sugar or unnaturally white. Getting a wide variety of nutrients is essential for energy production at the cellular level. My favourite foods for good energy are leafy greens, kale (I know this is also a leafy green, but it deserves a mention all on its own), green tea, berries, broccoli, sprouts, avocados, raw chocolate, apples, nuts, seeds, sweet potatoes, tofu, miso and seaweed
It had to be in here somewhere. Shiatsu is about getting your chi moving in the right way, while also being a deep tissue therapeutic massage. The practitioner finds the most stagnant and most deficient energy channels (don’t worry we all have them) and works at bringing back a healthy flow of chi. Shiatsu is all about balance, energy, rest, replenishment, peace and wellness.
5. Feng Shui
Feng what? I love the concept of Feng Shui. This is a huge topic but I will give you a paragraph long condensed version. Energy or Chi is moving around us all the time. The placement of structures and objects in your surroundings governs whether the overall feel of the area is positive or not so positive. You could also go as far to say that good placement brings good fortune, while bad placement encourages bad fortune. Fortune aside, there is a lot of common sense in Feng Shui. Keeping your home tidy and clutter free with a few beautiful plants, pictures and some soothing chimes are the basic recommendations for encouraging a positive chi flow. It’s true, don’t you feel happy when your house is looking good? Avoiding bad Feng Shui is actually quite obvious, like making sure doors and walkways are not blocked, cupboards are accessible, and things are in their place. When my laundry is piled up and my bed is unmade I generally feel more frustrated and on edge. So yes, Feng Shui makes sense.
Taking action to integrate healthy changes in you life is like walking up a garden path to happiness. Perhaps you could take note of your energy levels on a scale of 1 – 10 in your day planner and watch how they fluctuate from day to day. When you have a good day consider what you have done differently to help your energy improve.
Please share in the comments below what you like to do to boost you energy, I’d love to hear it!
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