Ayurveda provides a framework for how to sync the mind and body up to the rhythm of nature. When we are in tune and in the flow with the cosmos then energy is steady, digestion is strong and the mind is clear. Life becomes easier because we are swimming with the current - not against it.
The Ayurvedic clock is broken down into six cycles. Three cycles occur during the day and three during the night.
Before laying out the clock, it is beneficial to understand the energies which guide us. Ayurveda is based on the five great elements: earth, water, fire, air and space. These elements combine to create three doshas. Dosha is a sanskrit word which provides understanding to the elements and relating qualities. The three doshas govern mental and physical response.
Vata is the lightest dosha comprised of air and space.
Pitta is the hottest dosha comprised of fire and a little water.
Kapha is the densest dosha comprised of earth and water.
6a - 10a - Kapha Time
Dense kapha energy is strong at this time. It is best to engage in movement and exercise because there is already natural lubrication and strength in the physical body. Exercise also shakes any lethargy or heaviness in the mind.
10a - 2p - Pitta Time
The sun is at the highest point in the sky which increases the fire element. Use the hot, fire-like energy in your advantage and enjoy a large, slow lunch because the digestive fire is strongest this time of the day!
2p - 6p - Vata Time
Vata invokes light and mobile energy, so harness this energy through a focus on work. The subtle and expansive qualities offer greater creativity and productivity. It is also a time of transition from the day cycles to night cycles.
6p - 10p - Kapha Time
Enjoy a light meal. Digestion is not as strong during this time of the day. Supper is supposed to be supplemental meaning it should supplement the mid-day meal. If unable to exercise in the morning, this is a good alternate time to exercise. Get into bed and aim to be asleep before 10p while the dense energy can ease you into a restful night's sleep.
10p - 2a - Pitta Time
During this time, the fire and transformative energy of pitta is used to detox the system. It is important to be asleep before 10p, or else you may catch a second wind of energy. Being awake during this time affects your liver's ability to clean house or clean and repair your body.
2a - 6a - Vata Time
Start your day bright and early! The air is naturally lighter which makes for an easier transition into your day. You may notice that you are groggy if you wake after 6a during the kapha time. However, it is important that you get sufficient rest or waking up before 6a will be challenging.
Have you noticed any of these energies in your daily life? It can be overwhelming to think about switching your routine up. Habits are hard to break! The invitation is to begin noticing how the energy of each dosha affects your mind and body at certain times of the day. Perhaps start by slowly retiring to bed a little bit earlier each week over a few weeks, or have a slightly larger lunch than dinner. It is encouraged to make small changes and adjust habits over time!