This week is Week 5, which means it is time for the first round of exams for most classes here on the NUHS campus. Honestly, the fifth week of classes will sneak up on you before you know it, by the time you get organized it’s time to start preparing for testing. On a more positive note, the summer weather is finally here to stay, the past few days the temperature has been in the 90’s. It has truly been a nice treat to be able to get out and enjoy the sunshine, when my schedule allows for it. Getting in some time in the sun allows for Vitamin D to be synthesized in our bodies, which helps keep our bones strong, and contributes to sufficient levels of serotonin production.
In Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM) the summer season is associated with the fire element and represents a season of growth. One of the organs associated with the fire element is the heart. In TCM, the heart is seen as more than the muscle that pumps blood throughout the body, but also houses the shen. The shen is analogous to the spirit, mind, vitality, or the soul. Your shen gives you the sparkle in the eyes, and the je ne sais quoi (appealing quality) that radiates from within.
The emotion associated with the fire element is joy or happiness. Since the summer is the season of growth, it is important to foster those ideas that were birthed in the spring (wood element). When the fire element is unbalanced, it may interrupt your sleep, cause anxiety, or even cause palpitations. Ways to keep our fire balanced is to stay or get active, discover a source of joy, and make it a priority, and of course acupuncture is a fantastic way to bring forth harmony among all the elements.
Good luck to all the students this week!