Daily Routine Habits
The first component of this word denotes day and the second one, derived from ‘car’ (‘following, moving or walking’) means routine. Against this background, dina-carya is the pathway leading us to happiness and satisfaction in tune with nature’s heartbeat. A master (teacher) of this philosophy is called ‘acarya’, a person who keeps to the rhythms of nature.
The importance of dina-carya
The things we habitually perform on a regular basis day by day have a great impact on our health condition and state of mind. According to Ayurvedic theory following the nature’s rhythm will enable us to move smoothly through the day packed with work, duties, and problems. Dina-carya will help us achieve spiritual harmony and feeling of happiness. Below you will see a daily routine arrangement which can be adjusted to everyone’s schedule in the most convenient way. When we perform our small daily habits following the steady pattern our body and mind acquire a well-balanced healthy rhythm resonating with nature’s rhythm which embraces us in the dance of vitality and growth.
|YOUR BEST TIME||BEST TIME||SMALL DAILY HABITS|
|6-7am||Awakening. Visualizing & affirming.
Emptying bladder & bowels. Scraping tongue, brushing teeth, using mouthwash.
Cleansing ears, eyes & nose. Exercising. Massaging scalp skin, face and body. Taking a shower.
|7-8am||Practicing Yoga asanas postures or Pranayama ones. Meditating / reading spiritually enlivening texts. Dressing up & grooming.|
|8-9am||Preparing & taking morning meal.|
|9-12noon||Performing habitual daily duties with positive consciousness.|
|12-1pm||Having lunch & taking a gentle walk, admiring nature.|
|1-5pm||Continuing everyday duties. Thorough planning of the upcoming day routine.|
|6-6.30pm||Making a foot massage. Having a bath or shower. Meditating & practicing pranayama.|
|7-8pm||Preparing & having dinner. Spending some time communicating with family members.|
|8.30-9pm||Having a ‘soft’ walk. Assessing your performance and contemplating the given lessons.|
|9.30-10pm||Time to get ready for bed.|
|10pm||Going to bed.|
Most animals wake up as the sun rises not accidentally. Due to this they stay in harmony with the natural universe’s circadian rhythms. Identically we should build our daily regimen in such a way as to go to bad and wake up early. The person’s brain works most productively in the early morning. That is why you should do your intellectual or spiritual practice at this period of the day. Moreover, you can absorb the unique life force (its name is prana) only from the morning sunlight, as there is no prana is noon sun.
Visualisating / affirming
Figurativeness has a great impact on your day at the three transition moments. It is also known as yoga or samkalpa in Ayurveda. You are free to practice it whenever you want during the day. However, there are three best times for this: after early waking up, during the twilight hour and before falling asleep. The ideal place for making imagery is a cozy quiet room, far from disturbing places, which may drive your attention away. However, if you can easily concentrate even when surrounded by other people, you can do it in crowded places. Everything is individual.
If the best pose for you while visualizing is sitting, sit on the floor, cross your legs in the lotus pose, put your palms on the legs. Make sure you keep your head and spine straight. You can also lie on the floor or on the bad. In this case, your legs should be put slightly apart, your palms should be positioned straight by your side and your head should be aligned with the body. Your following actions are very simple and pleasant: close your eyes and try to relax as much as possible. Breathe slowly and calmly. Free your mind from annoying thoughts. Imagine that you leave you body and appear on the light cloud.
Visualization implies building in your mind the image of ideal physical and emotional state. Turn off your general way of thinking and imagine that you live your day without bothering about problems and inconveniences, you share your greatest feelings and keep pleasant contact with other people. You should affirm your life by reminding yourself: ‘I see my life is getting better every day’ or ‘I feel the power, I become healthier and more vital, I love this world and people in it’.
Clean your physical body
It is a common knowledge that the more wastes are in your body, the more risks of getting ill you have. The most appropriate time for emptying your bladder and bowels is the morning. It will be more efficient before having a meal. After cleansing your internal world, feel free to eat fresh and wholesome breakfast.
The proper work of digestive system as well as complete urination are integral parts of your health. You should ease yourself regularly; your excrements shouldn’t have h4 smell or unusual color. Stools should be free from undigested pieces of food. Purify your eyes, ears and teeth. Use steel or silver scraper for your tongue to prevent heart or dental diseases. Spoon can be an alternative tool.
One of the best ways of enhancing blood circulation is the massage which you can do on your own. Self-massage will give you pleasant relaxation and help to meditate You can use aroma oils. Before covering your body with them, warm them up.
The best time for doing some exercises is directly after self-massage. You are free to choose any type of exercise. Stretching, fitness or jogging will equally help your neuro-muscular system and joints.
Shower or bath
A shower or a bath with warm water is always better than with hot water. The latter is harmful to the health of the eyes and hair so do not use it to wash the head. During the bath or shower it is recommended to clean the body to remove dead skin and stimulate blood circulation. The best time for a bath is before eating or 2-3 hours after a meal. Do not bathe after eating, as this will take away the blood circulation from the process of digesting food.
Shower or bath provides the following beneficial effects:
- cleans ether-body;
- improves brain function;
- promotes healthy sleep;
- enhances the immune system;
- stimulates blood circulation;
- increases sex drive.
Applying the technique of pranayama breathing is the best choice after exercising or taking a shower. It helps to clean lymph systems, strengthen the protective ‘shield’ of the body and increase energy.
During meditation, your body and breathing are harmonized and stretched. Therefore, this is a good time for reading the mantra, repeating positive phrases or visualizing. This practice increases focus and allows a person to communicate with himself / herself or his / her consciousness.
Eating is not just a meal. It includes cooking food, the food itself and the consumer. If you cook food with love, you increase absorption. This does not mean the amount of food eaten. This is the benefit derived from it.
Some clever man said that things you put on your mind are more significant than those you lay on a plate. Also, you need to consider the compatibility of food (even if it is healthy) to your body. A meal should contain several textures and 6 tastes. To maximize the benefits of eating, the eater should engage all 5 organs of sense.
After the sun goes over the horizon, the body begins to fall asleep gradually. All its functions are slowed down. The frequency of heartbeat and arterial pressure level are reduced. This period is suitable for a good sleep, so let your body rest and do not load it with more food. If you are hungry at a later time, eat a light soup. Learn more about healthy eating and improving digestion in the rules of eating.
Be as faithful and attentive as possible when doing your favorite work. Take 10-minute breaks daily to listen to nature and your inner desires.
The reflection on what you learned from the past day and what things could be improved is a good way to resist the negative in this life. Say ‘thank you’ to the higher power for blessings and help in achieving goals.
Mental & physical preparation for the night rest are the last things you should do at the end of the day.
Four health pillars
What do you think the first health pillar is? Most probably, you have guessed it: it’s healthy nutrition. The most important components of nutrition are the eater, food, time of its use, preparation and combination of certain food products. The second pillar is Nidra, which means rest. The duration of rest, its quality and mode (timing) are the most important points to which you should pay special attention. Maithunam is the third pillar that includes your relationship with work, nature and people, as well as the relationship with yourself (which is the most important). The last pillar is Vyayama (physical exercises). Vyayama also includes a correct posture. Let’s summarize:
- Aaharam – Nutrition;
- Rest and Exercising – Nidra plus Vyaayaama;
- Maithunam – Relationships;
- Vyayama – Exercising.
Now we will discuss the scientific approach to nutrition. Perhaps you know the expression: ‘you are what you eat’. According to Ayurvedic teachings, the transformation of food products into healthy tissues in the body depends on the so-called digestive fire (agni). Absorption and use of nutrients are based on the power of agni. Ayurveda says that a person consists of what he / she assimilates. Good health and proper functioning of immunity are impossible without excellent digestion. Misbalance in the stomach causes bad transformation of food product into toxins, which in turn, lead to diseases of all types.
What are the signs of excellent work of digestive system? They include clean and smooth skin, bright eyes, predominantly good mood, permanent and healthy desire to eat, absence of diseases of the stomach and intestines, bright hair, flexibility of the body, good sleep, increased energy level, positive lifestyle.
Here is a list of signs of indigestion: irregular appetite, gastrointestinal diseases, tongue plaque, weight gain or weight loss, dull hair and eyes, dyspepsia, dark urine, poor and unrefreshed sleep, excessive mucus secretion, pain in different parts of the body, and fatigue.
What are the causes of digestive disorders? Below you will see a number of factors that contribute to this. If you exclude them, you will prevent many diseases or you will be able to get rid of these diseases.
- Use of wrong foods at the wrong moment, in the wrong quantity and in the wrong way. Negative environment (mental or physical). A typical eating disorder in developed countries is over-nutrition.
- Premature stimulation, suppression or inability to meet the natural needs of the body, such as thirst, hunger, visiting the toilet, sneezing, and flatulence.
- Consumption of cold food products (like ice-cream) and drinks (like Cola from refrigerator).
- Using synthetic over-the-counter or prescription medications.
- Air pollution, exposure to toxic substances, for example, harmful chemicals in beauty products & perfumes.
- Long-term psychoemotional stress, associated with anger, denial, response to loss of someone, etc.
Optimise your nutrition
By following the tips below, you will ensure a healthy digestion. There is a simple rule: ‘Drink your solids and chew your liquids’.
|BEFORE A MEAL||DURING A MEAL||AFTER A MEAL|
Do you really want to eat?
It is recommended to have a meal only if you’re really hungry & the food you’ve consumed before is completely digested (around 5 hours, depending on the food).
Do you need to visit the toilet?
It’s advised to go to the toilet and empty your bladder / intestine before meal consumption. Emptying bowels after a meal is a symptom of bad health.
Did you wash your hands, face, and feet?
Simple rules of hygiene are essential to prevent different diseases. Don’t take a bath / shower within approximately 3 hours after a meal because it takes the blood away from your stomach.
Are you in good environment?
Nice people, openhearted conversation, and excellent surrounding favorably affect your mind and digestive processes.
Did you express your appreciation?
It can be made by means of blessing to supreme forces or at least to persons who helped you to prepare / provide the food.
Are you in rush?
Eat slowly, each portion should be chewed not less than 15-20 times.
Do you appreciate the meal?
Evaluate your food, its texture, taste, and other qualities.
Do you need a drink?
A small cup of warm drink will stimulate digestion and absorption of nutrients.
Do you feel satisfaction?
You should remember that your stomach is fist-sized. To prevent overeating, develop a habit to fill ½ of the stomach with solid food, and ¼ with liquid. The rest should be empty, as the stomach needs space for processing the foods.
You should avoid hard work, exercising or intensive mental activity during not less than 30 min after a meal. A 5-minute moderate walk is recommended. Avoid sleeping within 3-hour period after having a meal because it can lead to toxin formation. Nevertheless, you can lie on your left side for around 15 min.
A kneeling pose called Vajrasana is a good method to improve digestive process.
THE PERFECT DIET
According to Ayurveda, the perfect meal should have all the following properties:
- Consists of fresh, organic ingredients, which are grown in your area and meet the criterion of seasonality.
- Includes dishes having 6 main tastes.
- Includes a lot of textures.
- Is balanced between moist & dry, solid & light, cooked & non-cooked, cold & heat food products.
- Is appropriate to the climatic conditions, the person’s constitution and his / her state of health.
- Has a good look, excellent taste and smell.
- Is cooked with love in hygiene-friendly conditions.
- Contains complementary sources of protein, like dhal and rice.
- Cooked in healthy crockery made of ceramic, bronze, rustless steel, or copper.
- Generally, you should avoid alcoholic drinks, meat products, soft drinks, coffee and caffeine, yeast, refined sugars, white bread (except for whole grain one), and smoking.
- Consume food with 100% awareness.
In addition, you should eat heavy products at the start of your meal. Light foods are preferable at the final stage.