2023 Daylight Saving Time

The end of daylight saving time traditionally occurs on the first Sunday in November, which means it just occurred this season on November 5th.  Daylight Saving serves as a significant annual milestone beyond merely shifting our clocks back an hour.

Daylight Saving is one of the markers of winter and slowing down.

In Traditional Chinese Medicine, the concepts of Yin and Yang are central to understanding the balance between our bodies and the natural world. The Yang season is associated with the warmer, sunnier days of spring and summer. Yang season is a time when we feel active and revitalized, it is a time when we spend hours in the sun, with endless activity. On the other hand, the Yin season is associated with the cooler, darker months of autumn and winter and mirrors the diminishing daylight that accompanies the end of daylight saving time. It is a time when we may draw within ourselves, rest, and nourish ourselves in more gentle ways than the yang season. 

Transition from Yang to Yin

This transition symbolizes a call to “go within,” which is a fundamental concept in Traditional Chinese Medicine philosophy. Nature, in all its wisdom, retreats during the Yin season, conserving energy and preparing for the stillness of winter. Animals go into hibernation, and plants shed their leaves and hunker down for winter. This shows us that we are encouraged to embrace this journey, as nature does. We work inward to foster self-awareness and mindfulness. By conserving our vital energy and avoiding overexertion, we align ourselves with the natural world’s rhythm and wisdom. We are a part of the word’s rhythm, and it is natural to embrace it. 

When the clocks are set back, we receive the gift of an extra hour of sleep. Although daylight saving may be an arbitrary adjustment and out of practice, we should celebrate the precious gain and gift that not only gives us more rest but also offers a symbolic and tangible reminder of the importance of this extra time to sleep and rejuvenate our bodies. 

During these fall and winter months, restorative sleep is pivotal in maintaining good health and further linking our minds and bodies to the balance of the yin season. During this time, we are letting go and releasing our yang season and fully embracing yin. In a culture so consumed with productivity and constant moving, this is crucial to find balance within our minds and bodies. 

The end of daylight saving time serves as a poignant opportunity to prioritize rest, establish a healthy sleep routine, and honor the connection between our bodies and the cycles of nature.

Embracing Yin Season

Nourishing Yin is a fundamental practice in Traditional Chinese Medicine during the Yin season, as it plays a crucial role in overall well-being. It involves consuming warming, nourishing foods and beverages such as herbal teas and hearty soups, which support the body’s Yin energy. The warming nature of these foods helps to stave off the cold and invigorate the body. 

Additionally, practices like meditation and gentle exercise, such as Tai Chi or yoga, are recommended to harmonize the body’s energy and embrace the qualities of introspection and replenishment.

In conclusion, the end of daylight saving time is not merely a technical adjustment but a significant opportunity to align with the season. It is a time to explore our inner selves, prioritize rest, and nourish our energy. By understanding and embracing the natural rhythms of the season, we can promote overall well-being and harmony, both within our own bodies and in harmony with the world around us.