by Nicole Johnson, MFA, CHHC | Acupuncture, Education, Health and Wellness, Immune Health, Integrative Therapy, Liver, Nutrition, Prevention
Spring is the element of WOOD and the color GREEN.
The ancient Taoists (Prounounced “dao-ists”) looked to nature to understand the human body, mind and spirit. They were philosophers and we need to be clear, Taoism is not a religion. When we tune into the movement of the seasons, we reconnect with and maintain our vitality. Just as with our circadian rhythms, our seasonal rhythms affect our health. Eating with the seasons is an excellent foundation to thriving health.
Spring- Wood – Green, Liver,
Liver out of balance = Anger
Liver in balance = Flow
In Spring, Yang is Rising
Let’s look around, what do you see? Trees starting to leaf out, flowers begining their bloom, greens pushing up? This is YANG rising. This is the start of the great in-breath – the height of which is the heat and outward orientation of summer. Yang is rising, the rivers are flowing, the birds are chirping and making nests, we all come out of hibernation.
The LIVER is the organ associated with spring. If our liver is in balance we experience free flow of qi (energy, emotions). If our liver needs some support, we may be quick to anger, snap at loved ones, or experience a low slow simmer of anger. Also, referred to Liver Qi Stagnation. I suffered with this for years. It’s true. Part of this is constitutional, meaning I have a tendency towards this, my family has a tendency, essentially – lots of – um- venting. Living in the south has been a balm to my constitution. I deeply enjoy – and have learned from- the kindness and generosity of spirit I have met in this region.
One of the solutions to opening up the free flow of liver qi is to take an aimless walk. This is for real, and it works wonders at opening up the free flow of liver qi. There is also a wonderful Chinese Medicine herbal formula called, Free and Easy Wanderer. Also, very helpful. These work wonders in conjunction with acupuncture which will support your liver and it’s reflexes. Feel free to ask us more about these remedies.
Foods to add in to your diet are – Greens, Greens, Greens. Greens impart, light, flexible energy to us. Bitter Greens and herbs, support the liver directly. Dandelion, Broccoli Rabe, and Nettles are especially helpful. Chickweed is growing abundantly, add this to your salads or smoothies. When working with the more bitter greens, please be sure to have them with plenty of healthy fat, it cuts the bitterness and adds a nutritional punch. Health fats would include Avocado oil, coconut oil, ghee, grass fed butter, and for those who tolerate it- bacon fat. A wonderful tincture to support the liver is Milk Thistle.
But truly, any greens- the fresher the better. These new greens that sprout up are here to help us clear away stagnation. Here is a fantastic Nettles Pesto recipe that I love to make with Fresh Nettles every spring. I usually do a green juice cleanse and my spirit and my body feel lighter and more upbeat.
A wonderful stone for this time of year that would support the free flow of liver qi is Amazonite. Known by the ancients as “Heaven flowing into the river stone.” It is calm, tranquil and supports us.
Here are some other thoughts to help us tune into the beauty of Spring.
- Young plants
- Spring fever- is Yang Rising
- Moved by nature – Emotions, awakening
- Nature sings, puts on a show
- Slough away the old, the dense
- Joyousness and Cheer
- Tending to the garden can bring joy and connection
As we align our hearts with Nature, we arrive more deeply into balance.
by Nicole Johnson, MFA, CHHC | Acupuncture, Adrenal Fatigue, Anti-Inflammatory, Digestion, Fatigue, Gut Health, Immune Health, Integrative Therapy, Pain, Pain Management, Sports Injuries
Packaged Treatments with Products – Great for loved ones, someone new to acupuncture, or yourself!
We’ve been working hard to create quality value-added gifts for you and your loved ones this holiday season. In the coming days we will be officially rolling these out.
We are finalizing all the details right now – please contact us to get on the pre-sale alert list.
Support for chronic and acute back pain.
Includes: 90 min Treatment Session*, Herbal Bath Soak, Pain Cream, Plasters/patches, *Add-on Treatments Optional
At the computer all day? Come and get some overdue treatment support for eyes, head, neck, shoulders, brain and body.
Includes: 90 min Treatment Session*, Magnets for daily treatment, Shungite, Free and easy wanderer herbal formula, * Add-on Treatments Optional
Need Some Serious Self Care? Now you can Stress Less and Sleep More
Includes: 90 min Treatment Session*, Sleep Supportive herbs, Rose Hydrosol, Lavender Essential oil, Lavender Chamomile Tea from Asheville Tea Co, *Add on Treatments Available
Come in for a deep immune boosting session and get everything to support yourself and family at home.
Includes: 90 min Treatment Session*, Home Moxa Set, Skin Brush, Gan Mao Ling Herbal Formula, Cold/flu tea, * Add-on Treatments Optional
Got foot pain? Arch issues? Plantar Fasciitis? Toes run amok? Come in and get support for your foot pain.
Includes 90 Treatment Session*, Silver Ball Foot Magnets, Foot soak – Sinew Relaxing Zheng Gu, * Add-on Treatments Optional
Curated by Chad, this on the go kit has everything you need – take it camping, hiking, traveling and more. Details soon.
by Nicole Johnson, MFA, CHHC | Health and Wellness, Integrative Therapy, Kidneys
So, 2020, eh? With all of the restrictions and constrictions we’ve been experiencing this year, let’s be sure to be even more loving to ourselves than ever before. Winter is a time of going inward, of being in the deep recesses of pre-creation, the place of potential, the place of darkness, the womb of possibility – before the seeds get planted. It’s a time of dormancy, of quiet, of stillness. We reside now deep within the kidneys, the place of our essence.
This is a good time for REFLECTION
Resolutions are abrupt, sometimes harsh, often with fearful, judgmental, guilt-induced roots. Resolutions are willful, aggressive and single-minded (often setting us up for a backlash).
Reflection is based in awareness, it is open, observational, gentle, expansive and unlimited.
One of the things that we’ve learned about profound and lasting personal transformation is that the temptation to speed along and make swift, hacking changes, doesn’t stick. If you’re ready for it, the ride is longer, deeper and ultimately more rewarding.
This takes different tools. The fun part is, these tools are creative and they run counter to the speed, end-gaming and competitive energy that for so long has run rampant in our collective culture. NOW –brought to you by the big slow down of 2020– we are already somewhat naturally more slowed. This is a place for gratitude to live.
As a soothing concept for our child, we have often provided the parable of the transformation from caterpillar to butterfly. In 2019, we were the caterpillar. Currently, we are in the liminal space – the primordial goo of undoing and recreating. The liminal space is ripe with possibility, it is transformation itself. This cannot be rushed, But it can be leaned into. It’s been long, but we need a bit more time, let us not rush it as it cannot be rushed.
Often, our greatest challenge is in our “inner work.” Why do we get stuck? Why do we sabotage ourselves? Why do we hold ourselves up to such high standards? Are you your own worst critic?
If 2020 has shed a light on anything, it is that NOW is the time to heal ourselves. It’s time for us to emerge and feel powerful without shame. It’s time to stop playing small.
We may not be able to control the pandemic but we can affect personal change. The turn of the New Year is a good time to reflect, release, and dream big. It is NOT a time to feel guilty, or redouble our efforts and make resolutions (also known as more rules).
Prior to March 2020, many of us suffered from subtle levels of stress, anxiety, perfectionism and fear, much of it we could not put a name to. Have you been able to see where your shadows are? Have you discovered new priorities?
How do we co-create personal change that is expansive and effective? How do we leap from where we are now, to where we’d like to be?
Try this simple technique to close out the old and bring in the new.
Step1 : Reflect. Take a few moments before the old year ends and the new one sweeps in and simply reflect. Grab a journal or piece of paper and take a few moments to just sit and gaze. How was your year? Yes, there are the overt traumas and challenges of the collective and personal journey this year – but do you have any silver linings?
What was really wonderful? What would you like to shed- that no longer serves you?
Make a heading at the top of the page and call it “Reflections on 2020”
Now list out “What I would love to keep”
Then list out “ What I am Ready to Let Go of”
Step 2: Dream your future open. Clear out the future by being in the present. Sit quietly for 5 to 10 minutes, relax and do the work of it. Imagine that you can shed all that doesn’t work in your life. Gather it and simply compost it into the earth. Now… think about 2021. It’s clean, fresh, unencumbered. What do you want to place there? What do you want to occur?
On a NEW page start with the Heading, “Visioning and Creating 2021″
Be free, open, and expansive. Use what you’d love to keep and expand upon it until it feels good to you.
Some really enjoy the process of creating a Vision Board.
Really see it. Claim it. Draw it. Write it. Paint it. Sing it. Drum it. Create it into being.
Step 3: Be creative and play. We are creators (you know, we make life…) so create! You don’t have to be a formal artist… just do something to let the energy flow. What might set your heart or spirit free—even for 20 minutes?
Get into the FLOW state. Color, draw, finger paint, do an interpretive dance, make a silly hat, make something. Seal your intentions with creative flow. Thank yourself and go and enjoy the rest of your day.
Remember, you are the conductor of the complex melody of your life. You are a being with power beyond measure. Use your power of reflection and awareness to create.
Have a beautiful celebration to close out 2020 and Happy New Year – welcoming in health, vitality, and possibility in 2021!
by Nicole Johnson, MFA, CHHC | Acupuncture, Integrative Therapy
We’ve Got the Gift Cards for the Ones You Love …and for You!
Gift Cards are in – just in time for the holidays!
This is a good way – or reason- to prioritize self-care for you or someone you love.
Check out what’s in development here.
From our family to yours, we wish you a peaceful holiday season.
by Nicole Johnson, MFA, CHHC | Integrative Therapy, Prevention
There is nothing more important than having a positive attitude. The attitude you display toward your day-to-day activities can make a huge difference in improving the quality of your life. Positivity helps to ensure everything functions harmoniously.
Here’s how to allow the enhancing effects of positivity to start impacting your day as soon as possible. Start your day by letting small amounts of sunlight into your room, enjoying a cup of warming herbal tea and just reflecting on what it is you plan to accomplish today. A simple morning routine such as this can boost productivity and positivity throughout the day. (more…)
by Nicole Johnson, MFA, CHHC | Integrative Therapy, Prevention
The holidays are a swirl! Step into this holiday season prioritizing self-care… and love.
Just for you and yours, we have lovely gift cards to turn a gift into a genuine gesture of loving kindness.
You can pick one up during an appointment or call the office and we can mail them out to you in time for the holidays.