The Metal Element
Autumn is ruled by the Chinese Five Element of Metal. Metal is the element of pure blue skies and clean air; of revealing the bright, pure nature of things. The lungs bringing in Qi or “purity of breath” and the large intestine expelling what is not needed. This is Metal energy in action.
Metal governs old age – a time of reflection; questioning and refining core beliefs and of purifying and eliminating anything that is no longer useful, whether stale air, waste material, ideas, beliefs or emotions. It focuses on sadness and grief; personal and metaphysical boundaries, the lungs and the large intestine.
While continuing with the current recommendations I have given you since your last appointment you may like to use some of these resources which I have identified as particularly pertinent to self-treatment during Metal time.
As ever, if you are unsure of anything please email me and I will endeavour to get back to you within 24 hours.
Using my breathing exercise when you wake up is a good way to encourage slow, deep breathing by relaxing the diaphragm every morning.
Exercising outside – particularly in native woods, by the sea, or in organic pastureland helps to clear stale air from the lungs.
I use a Himalayan salt inhaler most days to support my lungs as I am prone to asthma. You can find out more information here.
Using non-toxic household cleaners drastically reduces the toxic chemicals that we breathe in on a daily basis. Try the following easy swaps:
- Replace your washing liquid or powder with an eco-friendly one and try using the least amount you can get away with while still effectively cleaning your clothes.
- Replace your fabric conditioner with white vinegar to soften clothes.
- Avoid using room fresheners. Instead open windows whenever possible, leave saucers with water and a few drops of essential oils on radiators or make your own air sprays with water and essential oils in a clean spray bottle. If carpets or fabric need freshening up you can replace half of the water with cheap vodka!
- If you like candles, make sure they are either made from beeswax or organic soya.
- Use beeswax in place of wood polish. You can even make your own by gently melting the stumps of beeswax candles with olive oil and pouring into a glass jar. Simply rub a small amount on with a cloth.
- Try using bicarbonate of soda as a pre-vacuuming carpet-freshener, to clean the tidemark from around the bath or to scrub a greasy sink
- Try using a one part white vinegar to two parts water mix in a spray bottle for cleaning sinks, tiles, windows and kitchen surfaces.
- Mop with white vinegar diluted in a bucket of hot water.
- Use an eco-friendly brand of washing up liquid or dishwasher tablet.
- Fill your house with houseplants – they have superb air filtering capabilities!
Chinese medicine practitioners consider the skin to be part of the lung system. You can help to both maintain skin health and support the immune system with dry skin body brushing.
You will also find that making some of the following changes in your self care routine takes the pressure off your hard-working skin detoxification pathway:
- Rather than using a body scrub, try just using a flannel in the shower or bath.
- Space out the number of days between washing your hair or even check out the no-poo (no shampoo!) hair washing methods online.
- Massage organic olive, almond or coconut oil or raw honey into your face as a facial cleanser, and then wash off with a flannel or washcloth soaked in hot water.
- Replace a facial toner with several splashes of cold water.
- Use organic olive, almond or coconut oil as a facial and / or body moisturiser.
- Replace your antiperspirant with a natural deodorant based on essential oils. Or try making one by mixing equal parts coconut oil with bicarbonate of soda – store in a jar and rub into your armpits daily.
- Try using a blend of essential oils in a carrier oil (such as olive oil) in place of perfume.
As the outside temperature begins to drop off, this is a time to start including more warming foods to your diet. Stews and soups, slow cooked meats, overnight soaked porridge, and gluten free pies should start to replace salads and raw foods. Have a look at my ideas for preparing autumnal fruits and vegetables too.
A Herbal Tea for Autumn
Try this lovely recipe for Helen Carmichael’s Supportive Clearing Tea, specially designed for the Autumn.
Other Autumn Lifestyle Suggestions.
As the Metal element is also about “letting go” this is a great time for taking stock of what you actually need in life and liberating what you don’t. This could be as simple as donating a stack of clothes to charity, cleaning up unused files on your computer or getting rid of items in your food cupboard that are out of date or that don’t benefit your health.