"We first make our habits. Then our habits make us" - John Dryden
Today we’re taking you through what an Ayurvedic day looks like. Most of us have heard of the circadian rhythm, or our body’s internal clock, which is a 24 hour cycle that refers to our natural sleep and wake patterns . Intuitively, this makes sense. You tend to feel the most tired at night and the most alert during the day. Days follows a cyclical pattern.
Just as with the seasons, Ayurveda describes this specific pattern through the doshas. In Ayurveda, the 24-hour day is divided into six four hour increments, each associated with one of the three doshas (body constitution). This means that each dosha is associated with two of these increments. The Dinacharya, a daily routine detailed in Ayurveda, utilizes these natural patterns to make the most out of your day.
Kapha Time: 6-10AM
I’m sure you’ve heard all the buzz about early risers and how most impactful CEOs start their days early. While we can make no promises about getting up early being the key to success, we can tell you that Ayurveda recommends rising before 6AM. This is because the period of time between 6-10AM is dominated by kapha, the dosha associated with lethargy and heaviness. This means that if you wake up after 6AM, then you will awaken to the sluggishness of kapha.
Our Tip: Eat a light breakfast and save the larger meal for lunch. Take your Potion to get your day started right.
Pitta Time: 10AM- 2PM
Pitta is associated with digestion, making this the perfect time increment to have a large meal because it is the time when your digestive fire is working best. For those of you who are proclaimed night owls, you should know that because pitta is also associated with fire, this period of time is marked by activity and productivity. This means that this is the ideal time to to sit down and get your work done efficiently.
Our Tip: Put your phone on Do Not Disturb to cut out all distractions. Time block your most important tasks and power through.
Vata Time: 2-6PM
Vata is associated with the energy of movement, making this the perfect time to engage your creativity. However, vata is also highly susceptible to imbalances caused by bad sleep or poor diet the day before. When this happens, you will experience a shift in energy levels during the day, resulting in the afternoon sluggishness. In order to minimize these effects, you should simulate a relaxing environment. This means taking a walk or drinking an energizing tea.
Our Tip: Take your Potion to help with that 3:00 PM slump.
Second Kapha: 6PM- 10PM
Although in the morning time kapha makes it difficult to wake up, in the night time, it helps you wind down and prepare for sleep. You should eat a light dinner and be sure to fall asleep within kapha time in order to take advantage of the natural weariness of this time of day. You should also avoid any activities that might agitate you and prevent you from falling asleep.
Our Tip: Put your electronic devices away at least 30 minutes before bed.
Second Pitta: 10PM- 2AM
By this time of day, you should be asleep in order to allow your body to revitalize. Just as during the day, pitta is once again associated with activity, but this time it is an internal type of activity. This also explains why you get cravings at this time of night. Although a midnight snack sounds appetizing, your body needs the time to reset. If digestion is not complete, it will compromise your body’s ability to repair itself during this time.
Our Tip: Prioritize your sleep. What you didn't finish today can be done tomorrow.
Second Vata: 2-6AM
This period of time is marked by receptivity. If you rise before 6AM, then not only do you avoid the heaviness of kapha, but you also get the insights associated with this time. This is actually why in Eastern spiritual practices, this is the time of day to reflect and practice yoga and meditation, among other things.
Our Tip: Wake up before 6AM and reserve this time for self-reflection only. Try journaling or meditation.
Although increased productivity is one of the benefits of this routine, the Dinacharya does so much more than just maximize your efficiency. It connects you with nature, keeps you healthy, and most importantly, promotes inner peace.