February 6, 2024

#20: Aligning Motherhood with Mother Nature with Aja Arc

Sometimes taking care of your health is as simple as opening your window in the morning or changing the distribution of light in the evening and that’s exactly what Aja Arc talks about in today’s guest episode. While some of her tips seem “too good to be true” or “too simple to make a difference,” we’ve both learned through experience that small and simple changes make the biggest difference in your overall health. Tune in to see how much the sun affects our hormones, stress, and sleep patterns as well as how to initiate positive changes in your family routine without force or bribery.

About this episode

What you'll learn

  • How early morning sunlight exposure impacts your hormones, including the quality of your sleep
  • Tips for creating a more cyclical environment for your familiy
  • The benefits of mimicking the four seasons in your daily life

Guest details

Aja is an empowerment mentor, holistic health coach, certified bioenergetics practitioner, author, and a mother of two spirited little girls. Having gone through the hurdles of harmonizing her big dreams with her motherhood journey, she discovered her passion in guiding fellow mothers to find inner peace, easeful flow, and untamed freedom by reconnecting with the timeless Wisdom of Mother Earth and synching with their Natural cycles.


Grab a copy of the book Wintering HERE

Learn more about Yin Yang & traditional chinese medicine HERE

Visit Aja’s website HERE

Discover what season you’re in with Aja’s free quiz HERE

Connect with Aja on INSTAGRAM and FACEBOOK


Hey mama, welcome back to another episode of the well -nourished mama podcast. Today's episode is a little bit different It's a little less sciency and a little bit more intuition but we are focusing on lessons we can learn from nature and how that applies to our own health as well as the health of our family and how we approach the schedules and Just the environment in our home in general.

I'm talking with Aya today She's actually from Slovenia and I did not know this until we started our zoom call And I realized that we had an eight and a half hour time difference. So that was really cool But she talks to us all about the different things that we can learn from nature and our menstrual cycles And just the 24 -hour clock in general and how we can apply the principles of a natural cycle to how we approach life And obviously if that doesn't make a lot of sense now, it'll make sense as you listen to the episode but it was a really refreshing conversation because a lot of times we are talking about nutrition or some kind of science or exercise or things like that, but this one was really just kind of taking a step back and Looking through the lens of maybe what our ancestors did To feel their best and make the most of the time and energy that they have And it was just a really really cool conversation So I hope you really really like today's episode And I hope that it gives you a different perspective on maybe something really simple and free That you can do to improve your health this next year Obviously, it's the new year at the time that you're listening to this.

We've already gone a couple weeks into 2024 And whether you set new year's resolutions or not, I encourage you to Look at what you learned from this episode and see okay How can I approach this year differently or what are some changes I can make?

that will really just help me thrive in a really simple way. And this episode is gonna do that for you. So with that being said, let's jump into today's episode with Aya, all about lessons learned from mother nature.

Aya is an empowerment mentor, a holistic health coach, certified bio -engineerics practitioner, author, and mother of two -spirited little girls. Having gone through the hurdles of harmonizing her big dreams with her journey through motherhood, she discovered her passion in guiding fellow mothers to find inner peace, easeful flow, and untamed freedom by reconnecting with the timeless wisdom of Mother Earth and sinking with their natural cycles.

Aya, thanks so much for joining us on the podcast today, I'm really excited to have you here. Hey Brooke, thanks for having me, I'm really excited to be here as well. When you first reached out about coming on the podcast and I read some of the topics that we could talk about, I got really excited because this is a part of health that I've never really considered before or taken time to learn about.

And this is obviously what you teach and what you're an expert in. So I'm really excited for myself and I hope that all of our listeners are gonna be excited too because this is something that I don't know a lot about.

So today we're gonna be talking about just like what we can learn from nature and how we can apply that to motherhood. And it's, yeah, it's gonna be so good. But before we jump into that, can you just tell us a little bit about yourself and how you got to where you are in your career?

Yes, okay, so what I like to start with is how I really got to where I am today is through sort of losing my own health and then reclaiming it with the help of nature. And that's actually like, that's what I like to pass on now.

I was born and raised in Slovenia, which is a beautiful little country in central Slovenia where like nature is everywhere. Even the capital city is pretty much a village. So I was really, I grew up in very close proximity.

With nature, it was always just natural to me to be in nature. And I never gave it much thought because that's just the way things were. Like here it's still very normal that everyone has a grandma or an auntie that lives in the countryside.

And when they started coming out with all this ecological bio -vegetables, I was like, how else were they supposed to be? I mean, you know? So yeah, and then when I was about 25, I moved to a big city abroad, something I always wanted to do.

And everything kind of started falling apart, mainly my health. Like there were other things that weren't really working for me. But there were very clear physical symptoms of me not being okay and no really clear reason as to why that might be happening to me.

There was a lot of stress involved. I did move to a new environment. The job was stressful, but more than any, I started losing weight. My skin was acting out. My digestion was terrible. Like I would have diarrhea months on end.

I couldn't go to the toilet normally. I couldn't get anything in me without feeling nauseous afterwards. I was just so tired, I felt like I would never get enough sleep again. And those things just kept dragging on.

And when all that was happening, I was living in a small rented apartment where you couldn't really... The only view was of the building in front of me. And that was killing me. I knew it was killing me, but I didn't really know why.

I thought maybe I was just being... picky or whatever but then after a year of all that I came to a point where I told my then partner I was like I have to move somewhere else or I can't really stay here I need to go back home so we found an apartment that had a rooftop terrace and suddenly and some like plants in pots but still it was the closest thing to nature I could find in that city yeah and when I started really when I started spending more time on that terrace it was as if like everything that was troubling me started falling away and there came a day when I told my partner I was like oh my god I feel like myself again and he was like I have no idea what you're talking about it's like okay never mind but it was sort of and sort of around that time I also discovered a small park close to my apartment where I started going and I would just like sit on the grass lie on the grass just stare at the trees spend time in that little piece of nature that I have and everything started changing for me and I didn't know anything back then about the concept of earthing or grounding and how physically touching the earth actually restores the chemical balance in your body and restores your health through that I just did it instinctively and and yeah and now looking back it's sort of it's a story that brought me it brought me back home on one hand because I just felt that this was where I needed to be in order to keep exploring what I had just discovered and it's also led me on this path where I really really want to share this with everyone that's willing to listen because it makes it so simple but it makes such a profound difference in someone's life I agree and I love that you brought up that it was almost intuitive that you didn't really know the the science behind earthing or grounding but yet that's what your body was craving anyway that's what your soul craving and I felt that too where I didn't know grounding was a thing until last year but there were many times in my life when I was like I just need to go sit on the grass or I just need to feel the sunlight on my face for 10 minutes and I'll be okay or it's been raining for a week straight and I'm really sad oh I wonder if it's because I haven't actually seen the Sun in a week like just just recognizing that innately our bodies yearn for that connection to nature and thrive when we have that sense of peace and calm and fresh air and everything that comes with it I think that's really powerful and I love that you figured that out on your own before putting a name to it yeah and now that you mentioned it I actually I might get this all wrong because I really can't remember where I've seen it but I watched a documentary a few years ago where it was something about a school for autistic children or something like that, that whenever they would get like frustrated in that closed environment in the classroom, they would all instinctively run outside and stand on the only patch of grass that there was in that front yard in front of the school.

So we all like, yeah, that's one of the main messages. We all have that. We all instinctively know what will heal us in whichever way, really. And magic happens when we actually start to follow that on all levels.

It's not just physical, really. It's mental. It's emotional. It changes everything. Yeah. That's a really cool story. I'll have to try and see if we can find that documentary. That's super cool. I think maybe it could be, yeah, no, whatever I say now, I'll check it out.

Okay. Yeah. And if we do end up finding it, I'll make sure to put it in the show notes in case anyone's interested in listening to that. Yeah. The earth and just everything that comes with it is incredible.

And I just learned last week that our 24 hour cycle of hormones is based off of the sunlight that we get in the morning. And the cues that we get from the sun in the morning is what sets the cascade of everything else in our body for the day.

And I was like, oh my gosh, I had no idea. And I know we're going to talk about that later, but yeah, just the idea that we are connected to nature and that's what you're going to teach us about today.

So when we first get started, I want to just focus on the, like, let's start general and get a little bit more specific. So first of all, can you tell us how the four seasons teach us about our health and what we can learn from the four seasons of nature?

Yes, definitely. That was actually, that was another revelation for me after I'd already discovered all the benefits that nature has on our health. I went to a women's circle and the facilitator mentioned something along the lines of like you're not meant to constantly function on consistent energy.

You are nature, you're a part of nature and as such you're a cyclical being. I was like, oh my God, I'm cyclical. That's awesome and as a woman even more so because then we also have our menstrual cycles but we'll leave that for later.

That's when I really started going deeper into that and it's really so, when you start thinking about it consciously, it's so simple that you're like, oh my God, this is so obvious. Why have I never thought of that before?

But we rarely think about it because we're so caught up in this modern tempo of life we're so used. to all these artificial lights and the clocks that dictate our rhythms, that we hardly look out the window anymore.

But nature is always there to tell us what exactly we're meant to be doing at any given moment if we really wanna, let's say, make sure that we're okay, if we wanna take care of our own wellbeing. And so when it comes to the seasons, and since we're both here in the Northern Hemisphere, I'm just gonna start with winter because that's where we're at.

Winter is a time of rest. It's a time when nature takes a break, like the trees drop all the leaves and just do nothing until spring. There are so many animals that hibernate through the winter. Everything is dark, everything is cold.

And people, since we are a part of nature, we are meant to rest during the winter as well. And actually there's this fascinating book that's titled Wintering, where the author describes how people in the old days before the Industrial Revolution would actually, like when the sun went down, they went to sleep because there was nothing left to do when it was dark outside.

And then because they couldn't sleep for so long, it would actually, they would wake up in the early hours of the morning when it was still dark, take an hour or two to meditate, to reflect, to have some peaceful conversations with their family members or whomever was it, like members of the community that they lived in.

And then they would just go back to sleep until the sun came up because there was still nothing to do. And when they actually try to recreate those conditions, the same thing started happening to the participants.

So we're actually like hardwired to really sleep a lot in the winter. We just won't allow our. ourselves to do that because like I said the modern tempo like it gets dark outside you just turn off the light and now that you just mentioned it how the Sun dictates all over like our daily hormonal cycle all these artificial lights really mess that up because when you turn on the lights in the evening especially this modern LED lights and then all the screens they contain a lot of blue light and blue light is the one that the Sun contains the the largest quantity of it the Sun contains contains at noon which is supposed to be a time of like peak performance and top activity this is when you have the most energy so when you do that in the evening you actually send a signal to your body that it's time for action and then the melatonin stops producing and you can't really go to sleep in the evening so yeah So we messed those rhythms up completely just with the way we lit, and it really all started when we got light bulbs and clocks.

Yeah. Well, just thinking about the artificial light and having lights on at night, I'm going to tell my husband this because we have this joke where I hate the overhead lights, like the big overbearing lights, and he hates all of the ambiance lighting, like the lamps and the candles and whatever.

And so we're always fighting over which lights are on at nighttime. But I realized a couple years ago that, yeah, I felt stuffy and I felt like just out of place when we had these big overbearing lights on in our kitchen, in our living room, after the sun went down, even like during the summer, no matter what season it was.

And so I've gotten in the habit of not letting any of those lights be on unless like I have to do the dishes and I need a lot of light to see the dishes or whatever. But trying to have more of the casual lighting of lamps in every corner or like right now, our Christmas tree is our light in our living room.

So I've been doing that for a couple of years and I noticed that it actually helps me wind down when I tell my body, hey, there's less light. We're going to keep it relaxed. We're going to keep it calm.

It's not going to be overbearing. And that's really helped me sleep better at night. And that's helped my kids go to sleep better. And my husband has been struggling with sleep. And now that he's kind of adopted the theory, he's like, actually, yeah, it helps.

So it is a thing. We're just we want to calm down when the sun goes down. Yeah. And see, again, you did it instinctively. Like you just knew that it didn't feel right for you. Yeah. Yeah. And it's interesting because I was doing research and I actually learned that as the days get shorter and there's more darkness outside, our body actually increases melatonin production.

yes during the longer during the longer months when it's like fall and winter and so yeah we are like you said we are supposed to be sleeping longer during the winter definitely and when we don't it's really we send this body into this kind of overdrive when it never gets the chance to to get this rest like imagine if you never gave the soil the opportunity to take this rest during the winter like nothing would grow anymore and we're much like that soil like we pretty much function on artificial fertilizers these days but like when you start throwing parallels with nature you you really see that that's really how it is like we're meant to give ourselves this opportunity to rest right now and actually I don't know the more I get into this the more obvious it gets and now I'm at a point currently where oh my god I swear I could sleep 12 hours a day and it's not always possible like we still have to get out of bed in the morning we have this battle every morning now whether the kids are gonna make it to daycare in time for breakfast or not yeah um but yeah I actually like since where I'm at it gets like it's completely pitch black at 5 pm and then it doesn't really it's at 7 am it's still pitch black so like basically this really long period that like at 7 pm I'm pretty much ready to go to bed again very rarely a realistic possibility um but yeah and then I could just sleep until the sun actually gets up and that's how we were meant to function because like you already mentioned then the ideal thing for you to do it's also really bad to turn on all the lights in the morning as well because then again you're not getting the right kind of light the one that you would get from the sun ideally what you want to do in the morning is watch the sunrise or just make sure that the first light that you do get in the day is the one from the sunlight so I actually it's really weird but in the morning I actually brush my teeth with the candles on no I love that that's awesome that's awesome yeah and you know it could be something as simple as opening the curtains and opening a window when you first wake up in the morning just letting in whatever sunlight is there even if it's minimal letting in the fresh air letting in that natural light and trying not to turn any lights on until you actually need them that's the rule in my house is we don't turn on lights unless we absolutely need them and I will wait until it is pitch black outside to turn on lights to save energy of course in my energy bill but also just to maximize the amount of natural light that we're getting during the day and I'm going to speak to all the young moms for a second, because I know just like you and I, we're both young moms with littles, there's gonna be a lot of moms that are like, okay, I can't wake up to watch the sunrise.

I can't, you know, wind down at five o 'clock in the afternoon. I can't spend all winter resting and all these things because I have kids. So what would you say to those moms like you and I that have little kids or have big families that want to try and adopt some of these principles given the circumstances?

What would you say to them? A, you do what you can and make sure that you're being freely kind to yourself. And B, just drag the whole family along for the ride. Because like if you're gonna, you're not gonna be able to unwind if your kids are still going crazy.

But if you also get them into this rhythm. where they also, like they also start unwinding. It gets so much easier. Like you were talking about your husband really not being on board with the lights and then noticing how it really works.

It's all a bit of a family dynamic. Yeah, I know, like really, I have two girls that I don't even know where they get all this energy from. Right? Like I know exactly how hard it can be to, but you do what you can and whenever you can.

Like I don't get to get outside every morning to see the sun and actually we don't even get the sun in the winter, it's always foggy. But when I do, I just like you said, I open the window and I do that for the girls as well.

Like when I wake them up, now it's still dark when they have to get up, but when I wake them up and the sun is already shining, the first thing I would do is I would open the window because the room is actually facing east and I would just be like, look how pretty the sun is today.

And it's amazing. I swear if you just do that one morning, just let the sunlight be the first thing that your kids see in the morning and then observe how much easier it is to get them into bed in the evening.

Like it's crazy, I'm talking one day. It's like, and if like you managed to do that two or three times a week, you already have two or three evenings a week that are much easier on you as well. I agree.

And it's not just like saying, hey family, these are the hard and fast rules. It's the idea that as moms, we set the tone in our house, right? Everyone relies on us to set the rhythm and the schedule and the tone and the mood of our home.

And so if we're taking on that responsibility, then we can sit there and say, actually we're not gonna turn on any lights in case we need them. Or, hey kids, let's go eat breakfast outside. And obviously like in wintertime, it's really cold.

So that might not be a thing. in the winter but like finding little ways where you can to show your family this is really important that we're trying to interact with nature and you know enjoy the Sun and all those things it's up to us to set that tone and if we do it in a kind and in a loving way but also just setting the example and letting them follow the lead rather than like being dragged along then it really does make a difference and over time you can find things that work for your family yeah like a very specific thing that works really well I think for most kids but for mine definitely like in winter time their favorite thing right now is because we're also moving house so I have the the house is full of this huge cardboard boxes so I just put two together and I build them a little house and I took the one of this little threads of Christmas lights that actually work with batteries put that inside They would just sit, you know, like as soon as it gets dark, they would turn on their little Christmas lights and sit in the cardboard boxes.

And it's like, it's also a way of unwinding, like then I would maybe give them like, serve them dinner on tiny plates, put it in the boxes and I don't know, put a book in there and allow them to just play with one, like that way, you know, you don't really, you can actually make it really fun for them.

It doesn't have to be like, my house, my rules, this is what we're doing now, like you said. But you can actually, it can also be a sort of an inspiration for you to also find different ways to, to spend time.

Because if you can't, if you decide not to turn on all the bright lights, you're going to have to find some different activities. And that's really fun too. Yeah, I agree. And when it comes to like our schedules, like over the course of the whole day, you know, it gets dark earlier.

People naturally want to be inside when it's dark. And so maybe, you know, this won't work for every family, but maybe you sit down with your family and say, okay, when it's wintertime, we're only going to choose one extracurricular activity.

Like instead of doing three sports and a musical instrument, you know, you would just choose one thing and that way we're not as busy, right? So we're trying to be less busy during the wintertime and try and make it as restful of a season as we can, focusing on time with family and the holidays and just like, you know, making the most of it.

And then as we get into spring and summer, then you can be like, there's more daylight. So we have more time for more sports or more instruments or more friends or whatever and try and match your schedule to the vibe, for lack of better word, of the season and trying to say, okay, winter is a restful season.

We're going to kind of tone down our schedule a little bit and help your family see it's good to have a slow season in the year. Yeah. yeah it definitely and you know what I also like to do because it really helps people again it's so simple but we never think about that and yet it makes all the difference in the way you perceive the seasons if you just took the seasons and you threw them on the clock like winter would be the middle of the night right winter is like it's the darkest time of the year it's the darkest time of the day what do you do in the middle of the night you sleep yeah right and then and then as you move towards the morning you slowly move into spring everything starts nature wakes up in spring you wake up in the morning and then you gradually start building up all this energy that then towards the moon when the day is the longest and the Sun is the highest up in the sky you have the most energy like there's so much light you you just like you're so full of energy and so that's the middle of your day and the middle of the summer.

That's when you want to do the most activities, where you want to be most active because it just it feels right. That's what you feel like doing in the middle of the day or in the summer. And then as we start turning into evening or autumn, you kind of want to slow down again and turn inwards instead of spending all this time outside again and just focus more on yourself and your loved ones.

Yeah, yeah, that's a great way of putting it. And to all the moms of newborns like myself that are listening, that are like, okay, well, my days and nights are mixed up because, you know, my newborn wakes up at, you know, 2 a .m.

and 5 a .m. and I just kind of sleep when I can and my clock's all messed up. That's okay too. What I've had to do for myself is set rules of I'm not going to scroll on my phone while I'm feeding my baby in the middle of the night because I want to try and keep it as nighttime as possible while I'm feeding her or, you know, I only get on my phone if I absolutely have to, which is very, very rare.

So not going on your phone while you're nursing in the middle of the night or, you know, trying to take your newborn on a walk in the morning so that they can set their circadian rhythm because it takes four months for their circadian rhythm to set in.

So the more you can expose them to sunlight in the morning, the more they'll be able to sleep at night and then you can reset your clock. My daughter is seven weeks old and she already has sort of figured out her days and nights because I've been so intentional about spending a lot of time outside in the morning and makes all the difference.

So it is possible to do it with little kids. It is possible to do it with big busy families. It's just finding what you can do. Like you said, do what you can. can when you can and try to incorporate it every single day.

Now that you mentioned, I wanted to mention it before, but it kind of flew past me, scrolling on the phone, again, like that's blue light in the middle of the night and it messes with your melatonin production.

And then you're going to have trouble going back to sleep, but also your breastfeeding, like that hormonal imbalance through your breast milk transfers right into the baby. And you're going to actually make it more difficult for your baby to fall asleep by scrolling on your phone, which is for me was mind blowing.

I didn't know that when I was still breastfeeding. I just learned it recently, but yeah, it's actually, again, one of those things that you did so instinctively, but there's actually scientific proof that you mess up the baby's sleeping hormones.

Yes. Scrolling on your phone. And for everyone that doesn't know, your breast milk has... Cortisol and melatonin in it. So in the morning your breast milk has cortisol to try and wake up your baby and at night Your breast milk has melatonin to try and help your baby sleep and set their circadian rhythm So the more melatonin you have in your system and the more regulated you are the more regulated You'll be able to help your newborn baby as well.

So it all fits together Yeah, it does and one thing that I found like that really helped me when I was still when I had a newborn and I was breastfeeding And nights were messy was just simply going to bed earlier and then staying in bed longer in the morning Regardless of the season like try to get those hours of rest that you need to get in More or less during the night because Like people always told me whenever the baby goes to sleep just you know, you go to sleep as well But that never worked for me.

Like I really can I have to be completely exhausted To really be able to even fall asleep in the middle of the day And if I do it destroys me like I wake up grumpy all I want to eat the sugar for the rest of the day I actually don't want to get up at all like it's terrible So I really try to avoid going to it's like yeah physically lying down taking a rest giving your body a break That's a different thing

But I don't really you can't really substitute the kind of sleep that you get during the night with naps during the day like those should be Like a way to get out of a pretty extreme situation but not Like part of the normal daily routine

So what I did is I just whenever my baby girl was ready to go to bed I just went to bed with her and I wish she was ready to get up I got up and that was usually 12 or 13 hours of being in bed But it was the only way for me with all the waking up during the night to actually get all the rest that I needed And your postpartum like you do need that rest

Yeah Yeah, that's such a good point and rest doesn't always look like sleeping just like you said it can look like staying in bed or You know hanging out on the couch as a family after dinner or finding ways to just be slow And more mindful of where you're spending your energy.

I think is what will help us really understand what rest means.

So now that we've talked about winter and the slower season, let's get into the rest of the seasons. Tell us about spring and what we learn about spring and how we can apply it to ourselves and our family and their schedules.

Yes, so when we turn towards spring, our energy naturally starts rising. It's like we already talked about, spring is sort of, has the same energetic profile as the morning. So it's as if we also, we often feel that, you know, that tingling inside in spring when the bee starts buzzing and everything starts blossoming, we feel all this energy rising up inside of us.

And that's really, that's really spring is the time when we want to start new things in our lives when if we have this project that we've been meaning to take on for a while, spring is the time. And I like to mention that in winter, because a lot of people wonder why they always fail at their New Year's resolutions.

And that's the reason. It's pitch black. We're in the middle of the night, if you will. It's not the time for big new beginnings yet. Whereas if in the winter you give yourself the rest and you give yourself the opportunity to set intentions and to be intentional about your energy, when you get this bustling feeling in the spring, you're going to know what to direct your energy towards.

And it's going to make you much more productive and much happier. Yeah, that's spring. Again, to make it easier, I also just like to look at what is happening in nature or if you have a garden like early spring, you will put the seeds in the ground and then...

the spring progresses you will be able to see all those seeds sprout and start growing and it's the same with your intentions really. So as the spring moves into summer your energy peaks and that's also when you're gonna start seeing the first results of your efforts and like harvesting the first fruits.

So summer is really the time when you can pretty much do anything you want like it sort of summer makes us feel invincible. Summer is the season when it's really easy to get up at 5 a .m. to have a proper morning routine where it sometimes even feels invigorating to go for a run in the morning or you know something that just never feels right in the middle of the winter.

Nobody wants to get up at 5 a .m. in the winter to go for a run. Whereas in the summer we have all this energy and it's good for us to do things with that energy like it's good to move a lot it's like yeah just to live a very very full life because it's not gonna exhaust us as it would in the winter it's actually gonna fill us up more.

And then as I mentioned as we start turning into spring into fall it's also in the traditional Chinese medicine for example the spring and summer are considered to be the yang energy which is when we like act outwards whereas the fall and the winter are yin energy which is when we turn inwards and we actually focus on our inner work.

And again if we look at nature in the fall that's where all the leaves are falling and that's actually the time for us to let go of everything that no longer serves and supports us on our journey and allow it to fall away so that we can make the room and then again go into that restful season that will prepare us for everything for all the new that's coming in spring again and give us the energy actually it's the winter that's going to give you the energy that you actually want to have in the summer right so it all works with with one another like it's this beautiful cycle it is and i think when we appreciate that there are seasons of life and we are intentional with our seasons of rest i think that's where the true energy comes from right you mentioned that we get our energy from winter but it's only if we do it intentionally right if we're taking the time to pull back a little bit and rest and turn inwards and reevaluate and see okay how did this last year go what do i want to do differently how do i want to you know put my energy when spring and summer do come whether literally or metaphorically, yeah, just being really mindful with the seasons of rest, I think is what helps us have that energy when it is time to have all that energy.

Something else I like to think about with fall is the animals are stocking up on food for the winter, right? The squirrels are all trying to gather their nuts and animals are trying to stash berries and all these different things in their caves and bears go and eat all the salmon and then they hibernate and they made sure to eat enough food before they went into hibernation.

Fall is a season of preparation. It's preparing to rest, but it's also preparing us for a very intentional time. And so if we can incorporate seasons of fall into our daily life, like you said in the evening, maybe after the kids go to bed, you evaluate your day and you say, okay, what worked today?

We tried this today with the family and it did not go over so well. Maybe I'll try this tomorrow or I had a really hard day today and now that I think about it, I only ate one actual meal and I didn't drink a lot of water today.

So tomorrow I'm going to try to eat three meals and bring water with me while I run errands. And just that time of preparation and thought at the end of our day and then going into sleep can help us reset for the next day, the next season.

So I think it's really cool to see the seasons, like you said, as a clock on our daily schedule, but then also applying it literally to the four seasons and how we set up our family schedule and how we create an environment in our home that helps our family thrive.

Yes, definitely. And then there are other cycles in nature that are also like it's worth to be mindful of one is the moon cycle that there's some controversy but I'm always like it moves the ocean it definitely moves something in us as well.

And if you follow the moon cycle it's actually the same what I like to look at here is sort of the energy of a certain phase be it the season or the time of day or even the moon phase like because it's always the same thing and then you notice that everything is always repeating so we have the new moon that's the same energy as the night or the winter and you have the full moon that's the same energy as noon or the summer and everything in between so every phase of the moon again has a certain purpose and the exact same thing happens with the with the female cycle with the menstrual cycle and it's actually quite common for women to align with the moon cycle, in a sense that they bleed on the new moon and then they ovulate on the full moon, which is the fertile period, right?

And then when you bleed, it's the time of rest. It's not a rule. It's not necessarily like the case, some claim that statistically most women do tend to menstruate on a new moon. I don't know if that's true.

It doesn't really matter. It's just the important thing is to understand that within your cycle, there are also periods of rest and very fertile periods. And it sometimes gets confusing when like maybe you're bleeding, but it's like it's the middle of the summer and it's the noon and all these energies get kind of tangled and mixed.

And that can be also a reason why we sometimes feel a little confused and we don't really know like I'm tired, but there's like, but on the other hand, there's so much I want to do. And there's this thing that I have to take care of, but there's something inside me that's actually calling me to turn inwards and it's all just working with these different energies.

Sometimes we're lucky and it all aligns and it's really simple to follow it. And sometimes it doesn't. But when you understand that you're functioning on so many different cycles at the same time and that you're never in the exact same phase of each of those cycles, it just makes it so much easier to figure out what's going on with you and to just know this and acknowledge that it's okay.

It's all natural exactly the way it's happening. Like you don't have to ask, what is wrong with me? No, nothing's wrong with me. Like this is just a natural part of all these beautiful processes. Right.

And I think what you're getting at is the idea that we are trying to apply the principles of a cycle, whether it's the lunar cycle or menstrual cycle, the four seasons nature cycle, it's just the idea that everything else around us has a time and a season and a different energy that goes with it.

And the more we can pay attention to how we interact with those different energies and seasons, I think the easier it will be. Like I know some women, you know, when they do, I'll always say that, oh my goodness, I'll start over.

So I know some women, you know, when they have their period, they are really tired, they wanna sleep more, they have cravings because their body needs more energy to handle everything that's going on physiologically.

And when they try and... run around and do all these activities all day or do a really high intensity workout or something like that. It just wears them out because their body naturally wants to slow down during that part of their cycle.

And so I think what we're really trying to say in this whole conversation is the idea that we have a lot to learn from cycles around us. And if we can pay attention to how we interact with that, like I said, then it will make things so much easier for us.

So before we close, I want to ask you just some tips for moms. Maybe they're listening today and they're like, oh, I need to be better about getting sunshine or I need to be better about honoring a season of rest or whatever it is.

If you could choose two or three really simple things to help moms just start to kind of incorporate these things that we've talked about today, what would you say would be those two or three things that moms could do?

OK, I also want to mention the things that, in my experience, make the biggest difference because we know how difficult it is for moms to incorporate a lot of things. So if you are incorporating something, make sure it's the one that really counts.

Number one, no artificial light in the evening, especially in a sense like don't fall asleep watching the television or scrolling through your phone. Like, that's pretty much the worst thing you can do in terms of your circadian rhythm.

And we all know that new moms need their rest. And this is just going to sabotage it. Like, read a book or just retire early. Go to sleep, cuddle with your baby before you fall asleep. Establish this.

We all know how important it is for a baby to have a nighttime routine, to unwind and take a bath, and then slowly prepare them for it. But we don't do that. for ourselves and it's really important like if you want to feel rested and full of energy for the day that's number one like a calm evening routine um number two spend as much time as you can outside getting fresh air getting the sunlight like you said especially in the morning and whenever you can try to pair that with actually physically touching the earth so that you get some benefits of grounding in as well because it's like if you imagine that chemically the way it works in the body is that it equalizes the electrons in the body so when you just touch a surface that has a different electric charge than you it instantly equalizes and so the problem is we all feel so bad sometimes because the charge in our body is positive Whereas it's meant to be slightly negative, just as the charge of the earth.

So when you just touch the earth with your bare skin, that equalizes and it instantly boost your energy and makes you feel better. Now really quickly before you move on, does it have to be grass or can it be like the cement in my backyard that like has been exposed to the fresh air or can it be rocks or sand, like can it be anything?

It has to conduct electricity. So it can be plastics, it can be wood if it's dead. Like if you touch a tree, it counts because there's liquid inside and it's still like conducts electricity. Concrete conducts electricity asphalt, doesn't it?

Okay. So it just has to be, so whatever it is, it can be sand on the beach, it can be like gravel on the, that's still gonna, it doesn't necessarily have to be grass, no? That's good. Because I know some people don't have grass.

Touch a tree or, because in the summer it's really easy. You can walk around barefoot, you can lie on the grass, but in the winter it's trickier. So yeah, in the winter, what I like to do is touch trees or like plants and stuff like that.

Okay. Sorry for interrupting, I just wanted to ask that because I knew someone was gonna say, but I don't have grass. Yeah, no, I don't walk around barefoot on grass in the winter much either. I sometimes do it when I feel like I urgently need to wake up in the morning, but those are like those extreme measures already.

It works though. It's really cold outside. It'll wake you up. When you step on the grass barefoot for a few seconds, you're wide awake. But okay, number three, just be really kind to yourself. I mentioned this already, but it's so important because We have this, we do get certain super powers when we become mothers, but we also tend to expect way too much of ourselves.

Like, don't push it, just allow yourself to know what is best for you in any given moment and follow that knowing. That would be my top advice, probably for new moms. That is some great advice, and I think those are simple enough that no matter how busy we are, how tired we are, those are definitely things that we can incorporate.

I've been doing a little challenge with my Instagram followers for the last little bit. It's just different, it's basically a list of 10 different things that you can do every day to improve your health that aren't related to.

Oh, I can't eat this food because it will make me fat over the holidays or something like that. It's just, you know, very holistic, intentional way of trying to take care of your body. And one of the things is just 15 minutes of fresh air outside, even if it's cold, even if you have to wear a giant jacket and gloves and your winter boots and walk around in the snow or whatever, just 15 minutes of fresh air can make all the difference.

And so it's finding those little tiny things that will help you feel your best with whatever season of life you're in and just trying to learn from what nature is already doing on its own. Because the more we mimic nature, the more balanced we'll feel, I think is what we're trying to get at.

Yes, definitely balance is what I was trying to get at the whole time. And yeah, if you think about it, like I always whenever confused, I just think back about our ancestors, like what did they do? What would they do?

Like what options did they have? Because the way we live today is just unnatural for us as human beings. Like never before in human history did people live indoors and have heating and air conditioning and tap water full of chemicals and stuff like that.

Like we just we don't even know the burdens that were actually like we've made ourselves so comfortable, but we've also taken away all those things that have sustained us up until now. And just going back to that makes such a difference, not in any extreme way, but just trying to tap back more into what is really natural for us and that's yeah, spending more time outside eating actual food that grew in the soil, drinking clean water, breathing fresh air like watching the Sun yeah it's going back to the basics it's not supposed to be complicated no no it's really really simple well I had such an amazing time today I loved our conversation this is so refreshing to just talk about something so simple that I think we often forget about and I certainly learned a lot from you and I know that you and I could sit here and talk for like three hours and just go on and on we didn't even get into Chinese medicine so I might have to have you back so we can talk more about that one day but before we close I want to ask you a question that I ask all of my guests and that question is what is a non -negotiable to living a well -nourished life following that knowing inside we all know there is no Guru out there that can tell you exactly what is right for you because what is right for you is different from what is right for everyone else and This is actually where I found like I I read so much.

I've studied so much. I followed all the fat diets I tried everything but ultimately what it all comes down to you know, if you really tune in and listen Your body is telling you Everything that you need to know to live a really well -nourished life and it's just really a question of sort of Rediscovering that knowledge and digging it out from under all the clutter that Accumulated over the years and all these ideas of what is right and what isn't because also what's right for you today Isn't gonna be right for you tomorrow Or in a week and it wasn't right for you yesterday but today it feels nice and when you are just in tune with yourself and you and you follow what your body is telling you That's when you're really living a well -nourished life What a great answer and it ties so well with our conversation today.

Thank you for that Aya, how can we connect with you learn more from you possibly work with you? How can we be a part of your world? Okay, the best place is my website which is the untamed dreamer comm On that website.

I also have Short quiz that I recently created that actually helps you figure out where in that energetic cycle of seasons and days and menstrual cycles you currently find yourself in Like if you feel that your energy is a little confused that can be really helpful because it's gonna help you move through it I also have a seasonal guide available always for every season to just kind of with tips and tricks and checklists and things like that to get you through the through the season in the best possible way.

I'm also on Instagram at Aya underscore the untamed dreamer. I also have the untamed dreamer Facebook page and my personal profile which is Ayajark. But like if you just go to my website you'll find all that there anyway.

Awesome I'm I want to go take that quiz. That quiz sounds so interesting and I'd be curious to see where I'm at being in the winter months with no period and nearly postpartum. So I'm gonna have to take that quiz.

Well thank you so much for being here. We'll be sure to connect with you and I hope we can have you back on the podcast soon. Thanks Aya and we'll see you in the next episode mamas.