PSSST! Have you heard? There’s a new self-care practice in town, and it’s my go-to, non-negotiable secret to feeling more IN the body, glowing and full of shakti radiance. Maybe you’ve already heard of it….
As we lean into the Autumn season here in the Pacific North WET (lol), the winds are bustling and chances of catching a flu or a stomach bug are on the rise. This ancient practise not only leaves you glowing and energized, but wards off sickness by boosting the immune system and helping with lymphatic drainage.
BODY OILING + DRY BRUSH + COLD SHOWER
Yikes! I know when I first drop the “cold shower” detail to women, they freak out. Justly so! But hear me out– there’s a method to this madness.
How do I begin?
Start with leaving yourself about a 15-20 min window so you aren’t rushing. This practise IS a feminine embodiment awareness practise, and the level to which it can be sacred for you, is to the level you are aware and conscious, loving and slow while you do it. I hope you have the washroom to yourself! Put some beautiful sensual music on, and admire your sacred vessel in the mirror as you begin oiling up. I like to start with the feet and work my way up. Gaze at each body part lovingly, perhaps saying sweet words or a mental “thank you” for all this body does.
1. Let’s Oil up!
This practise on it’s own is called “Abhyanga”– an ancient Ayurvedic self-oiling practise which usually has the oil created to be dosha-specific, and is typically used with sesame oil. Since I’m not utilizing the traditional mode- I stick to an organic coconut oil mix, where I throw in some root chakra essential oils. For my current ladies in my 7 week Awakening Shakti, I used a grounding and sensual blend from Saje store, called “tantra”. It has essence of patchouli, neroli, cinnamon and champa. YUM!
2. Dry Brush
This is the core element of this practise. I like to use a dry bristle brush with long handle, and work in circular motion from the feet up, going over each area a couple times, moving up always, eventually to the heart. We are tracing the direction of the lymphatic system towards the heart. This encourage lymphatic drainage and is an excellent detoxifier and immune booster. The brush can be bought from most health food stores.
3. Cold Shower TIme!
Oh yes, the part you’ve been waiting for. This practise actually alone is very ancient and dates back to a few different cultures. It gently shocks the internal organs to activate, and allows blood flow to the skin. I attest that this practise alone had prevented sickness for me many a season! The brief shock is worth it, as it acts as a natural espresso shot! Maybe try some warm water first, then get yourself to the coldest, making sure to move and pump the skin, the blood towards the heart, shaking as you need, careful not to slip! Try first 1 minute and gradually you’ll be able to do a solid 5 minutes, getting the breath slow and deep, after the yelping has subsided! LOL. I like to lift my arms in the air and let the cool water run down my armpits along the side ribs, and occasionally step back, turn around and let the cold water hit the bottoms of my feet. So refreshing! Usually this is also the time to chant some mantras pretty strongly, or your favorite power song! I like to chant ” Om DUM DURGA YAI NAMAHA!” the warrior and protector goddess of Hindu mythology, or
” AAD GURAY NAMAY, JUGAAD GURAY NAMAY, SAT GURAY NAMAY, SRI GURU DEVAY NAMAY” the sikh mantra ( also used in Kundalini yoga) which translates to:
“I bow to the primal wisdom.
I bow to the wisdom true through the ages.
I bow to the true wisdom. I bow to the great unseen wisdom.”
Tune into your innate warrior essence. That part of which is unchanging, and deep. Constant.
Did you try it? How did it go? Happy sacred self-caring to you Beloved.