The Weekend Warrior

By Ann Zimmerman, LAc.

We have reached the time of year when we tend to do more than we “normally” would schedule on our calendar.  Somehow all the friends, family, camping trips, festivals, gardening, etc need to get squeezed into a few months.  The long days of light, warm weather, no school and the general energy of summer  bring forward a manic quality in most everyone.  We anxiously peruse our calendars looking for another way to take a Monday or Friday off or maybe even longer from work.  And if its not going to be a long weekend…..than we are willing to eek out everything we can for those 2 days. 

In Chinese medicine, summer is the season of the heart and the emotion that is associated with summer is joy.  In summer we have joy.  It almost feels like a mandate,  a must for surviving the other seasons.  A reward for the long winter and the busyness of spring.   Summer tends to swing our inner pendulum way past the middle place of balance.  This season tends to be a time of excess versus winter’s time of deficiency.  It’s the time of the year when you say, yes.

Yes…..I will paint my house, yes I will stay up all night dancing, yes I will travel across the country and visit 5 sets of friends, yes I will have another beer, yes you can stay at my house, yes I will be gone another weekend…………We naturally feel more energy and hopefully it will get us through the summer. Of course with excess comes the price of overdoing it.  We each know our unique way we overdo it in life.  

Over joy can often result from summer’s manic pace. The idea of over joy is unique to Chinese medicine, it certainly is not an american concept.  There can never be too much joy, right? Remember how you felt last September when you were finally ready to stay home and take it easy?  That is the effect of overjoy.  The drive for more and more joy tends to make our everyday jobs/chores feel mundane. This restlessness tends to build pushing us past when we would “normally” slow down.  

So the challenge here is to embrace the natural expansion of summer without pushing yourself into the excess of injury, compromised immunity, insomnia, anxiety, and overindulgence.  Good Luck!

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