Archive for the ‘Coffey articles’ Category

by Gail Coffey, formerly CEO, Sharing Wellness Info, reprint from April 2011 newsletter

Feeling the warmth of the sun on your face, enjoying lengthening days and the gradually warming temperatures, thinking about or getting outside and exercising, preparing soil to plant flowers or a garden, bursting with ideas for new projects–these are all signs of spring. Some hints of spring arise inside your being; some appear before your eyes. Have you noticed the budding of the leaves on the trees? the first daffodils? the forsythia bringing us all that bright yellow color? the fruit trees beginning to blossom? the grass greening up? Maybe you’ve noticed that your mood is growing a bit brighter? Your energy is picking up a little and you need a little less sleep. This is the time of Wood in the Five Element model. Healthy wood is known by its flexibility–ability to bend with the wind without breaking; its deep-rootedness (lots of roots below the ground that you don’t see but that support and nourish the tree and keep it from being blown over during storms) and strength; its ability to produce seeds of new life; and its ability to go through the seasonal cycles in all its glory.

With the earthquakes and tsunamis and nuclear reactor failures in the news and impacting our lives, it’s easy to lose the qualities of the Wood energy that we most need:  strength and flexibility; ability to cycle through the emotions that arise rather than getting stuck in fear or other emotion; staying grounded, rooted; and being able to provide the nurturing that those around us need during these times of stress.

The Wood element (spring time) has to do with the organic functions of the liver and the gallbladder–in a systemic way. In our lives, this may affect strategic planning, decisions, judgment–or it may show itself as frustration or a migraine headache when things don’t go according to our plans. It might show up as having trouble making decisions or sticking to a plan.

The eyes are the sense organs of the Wood Element. Dianne Connelly in Traditional Acupuncture, The Law of the Five Elements, says, “The eyes are considered to be vessels of vision integrating the outside and the inside of a human being.” Most eye problems are a result of some type of trouble with one’s Wood element–just as clarity of vision and the ability to “see” clearly are signs of balance in the element.

Often, we associate the months of March and April with a lot of wind, the kind that helps “blow in” a new season. In Chinese medicine, this wind is known as the East wind that, in excess, can cause problems in the neck and throat. It is wise to experience this wind in small doses, limiting its ability to create illness for you while appreciating that the same wind is drying the ground when it is too wet, and carrying seeds to where they will pollinate and start the next new life.

This is also the element of the soul, your desire to be “in life” and “live life.” No wonder, then, that so many people experience the bursting forth of spring as affirmation that they have lived through another winter and will “make it” another year. No wonder that spring and it’s glorious colors and new growth inspire us to write poetry, draw, start an exercise program that we’ve been putting off, reconnect with friends, plant a garden, buy some flowers.

The Wood energy is one of vision and so we invite you to join us and get and hold a vision of our Earth and her people that is all inclusive, respectful, full of peace and Light, and love–fill yourself with the vision, and then breathe it out, sending it to the farthest places you can imagine as well as to all your family and friends. Use this spring energy to do something kind and unexpected–at least once a day–and watch and feel your own heart grow. Since April 22 is Earth Day, you might wish to make a new or renewed commitment to reduce your footprint, ecologically speaking. Or to send prayers to those in spots like Haiti and Japan, or to those facing job cuts in the US–or to all of the above. Enjoy and celebrate spring!

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Wake Up Feeling Tired Day After Day?

By Gail Coffey

Wonder why? Or do you already know that you’re commuting for hours with lots of tension and stress—while conducting business by phone so as not to “waste time,” working after you get home, and not getting into bed until midnight or well after?

A friend sent me this link () to an article entitled “Why Do Computer Tablets Disrupt Sleeping Patterns” and it made me think of all the things I’ve discovered that disrupt my own sleeping patterns (after years of ignoring the fact that my body really does need 7 to 8 hours of actual sleep each night to stay healthy).  You may want to check it out to see if any of them apply to your own feelings of fatigue.

Having a tv, computer, printer, cell phone, “walk about” phone or any other kind of “emitting” device in my bedroom disrupts my sleep—either because it “glows,” rings at inappropriate times for inappropriate reasons, or makes noises that I hear even if I don’t entirely wake up.  Alarm clocks that have radiant dials so you can see how long you’re awake without turning on a light—radiate light that keeps the room from being really dark.  Living in the city, I’ve learned that it’s never truly dark outside my windows (street lights, neighbors’ lights, etc.) unless I use room darkening shades (with room darkening drapes to cover the white lines around the sides/top/bottom of the shades).

When I had finally gotten my own bedroom as dark as possible, I traveled and found the amount of light in the hotel room was very uncomfortable and not conducive to sleeping deeply…so, I have learned to carry duct tape in my suitcase and be resourceful with hotel towels and pillows. For some reason, hotels usually put smoke detectors right where the light shines in your face when lying in bed—you can cover that little light with a small piece of duct tape and improve your sleep a lot.  Most hotel doors have a wide gap at the bottom—letting in a lot of light—I use one or two of the many extra pillows or roll a towel to block that.  Most hotels have room darkening drapes—that don’t quite reach all the way to the top or the bottom of the sides of the windows.  Sometimes you can use pieces of furniture (or some duct tape) to hold the drapes in place to help with the sides, roll towels to help at the bottom.  I unplug the alarm clocks that glow in the dark and carry my own that only glows if I touch the button on top of it.  That also eliminates the clock radio going off at some ungodly hour that a previous guest set and didn’t turn off.  Then there’s the light that glows from the tv, sometimes from a microwave, or a coffee maker.  You can use your duct tape to cover those lights – it’s easier than finding the plugs to unplug them all.

When I travel, I put my cell phone in the bathroom to charge at night, turn off my laptop or cover it with a pillow so there is no glow or pulsing light from either. I like to reduce the EMF transmissions as much as possible…yet, I also like the convenience of wireless devices.  So, I have looked into devices to reduce the effect of the EMF transmissions from all these electronic devices to further help my sleep quality.

Mirrors in bedrooms reflect any light that exists.  If they are in the same space as my bed, I try to cover them—with an extra blanket or sheet or towel—for sleeping.  Once you get in the habit of turning off the room lights, looking to see what’s glowing at you, it only takes a few extra minutes to turn off more power (saving energy, too!), cover up the little blinking lights, turn items around, etc.  And, the much deeper sleep is well worth the effort!

A list of more stories by Gail Coffey appears on the page labeled “Fresh Coffey.”  You also can select “Coffey articles” in the CATEGORIES column.

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