Where has the summer gone? A friend once said to me she felt the first signs of autumn in the cool breezes of mid-August. I refused to believe her. I’m solar-powered – I live for the heat and sunshine of summer! My mood would darken as the days did, when the promise of heatwaves were replaced by the changeable, often fresher days of August. Too soon – we haven’t had enough sunshine yet!
But I never forgot her words. Then, when I trained as an acupuncturist, I became more accepting of the changing of the seasons, of the cycle of life, because Chinese medicine and Taoism are based on the five elements representing the different seasons of nature. And the more I aligned with what was, rather than how I wanted the weather to be, the more content I became.
I love the late-summer feeling of August now. We’ve moved into the Earth element, away from the sparkly but capricious energy of the Fire element, of early summer – which often promises more than it delivers anyway, I find. (How many barbecues and picnics have you actually managed this year?!) The Earth element consolidates, it’s about the harvest, reaping what we have sown, birds fledged and animals weened; coming back home.
As a face reader, when I see full cheeks – and flesh on the face generally, I know my client is rooted, down-to-earth, able to enjoy the present and not hankering after the past or dreaming about the future. Full, pink lips are another sign of a healthy Earth element. There’s huge richness – figuratively and literally, in a strong Earth element. It shows the capacity to accumulate, to attract abundance. When it’s out of balance, the digestion can get sluggish (the Earth element rules the stomach and spleen/pancreas – too many strawberries and cream in the garden, or cocktails on holiday?). And we can fall into over-thinking and worrying, getting stuck in our thoughts, like wading through a muddy festival field. When our Earth is in harmony, we are clear-headed and grounded, and accepting of life and people as they present themselves.
Has your heart (symbolised by the Fire element) over-reached itself with the thrills and excitements of high summer? Earth brings us back to the need to nourish ourselves, and to supporting each other in deeper, more consistent ways. Gardening, cooking (especially for others) and simply lying on the grass are good ways to re-earth yourself, as well as eating naturally sweet foods.
For if we accept the quieter nature of these cooler, wetter days of August with good grace, we are instantly more in tune with the elements and ourselves. The path of least resistance frees up so much energy! And then we will feel balanced and ready for the change in pace of September/October, when school and work routines kick back in, and the more structured and aspiring Metal element comes to the fore instead.
Some of my most committed clients come to me at the first whiff of the changing of the seasons – they find acupuncture really helps them adapt to the shifting energies, and stops them from getting viruses – or depressed. I love working on this preventative energetic level. I find the results can be profound and long-lasting. August/September is also an excellent time to have a face reading, to explore your deeper values, desires and dreams, before you find yourself back in the same old routine.
Either way, enjoy coming back to Earth!
Acupuncturist and face reader at the Wellbeing Clinic