I really do like winter. I even like snow! However, it is around this time of the year as we head into March that I really start to crave more colour outside. In particular, I find myself longing for something green. This year has been particularly challenging in that we've all been restricting our outings and travel. Many of the local greenhouses have been closed to the public as well. This week, however, I decided to take matters into my own hands and visit a local nursery to see if they had something green to gaze upon. I was not disappointed. I was delighted to find many different varieties of green tropical plants, orchids, succulents, cacti and even some citrus trees in bloom!
What is it about seeing lush green plants that we enjoy so much? The sheer abundance factor has to be part of it, for nature is abundant. But did you know that our eyes have evolved to be able to see more shades of green than any other colour? Apparently the cone cells in the human eye are more sensitive to green frequencies. Human beings have an evolutionary advantage that allows
us to scan for varying degrees of ripeness of potential plant food and where there are plants, water and shelter are likely nearby. The colour green falls into the mid-spectrum of colour waves that we can see. As a result, researchers believe that compared to other colours, it is easier for us to perceive the colour green and thus less stressful on the nervous system. Indeed studies show that spending time in natural green environments or even looking at pictures of green scenery in nature can lead to relaxed muscles, and even affect the release of hormones in our bodies which can result in relief from symptoms of stress, better impulse control and improved focus!
With all that’s going on in the world these days, remember to be intentional about doing those things that bring you joy. Even if it's just taking a moment to enjoy some green plants at the grocery store! Make time for yourself and take time for healing.
Here’s to greener times ahead!
At the moment, it seems like spring will never come in southern Ontario and yet I saw these bright and cheerful blooms braving the snow just the other day. These tiny, yellow flowers are called Winter Aconite, one of the very first flowers to come up in spring. And how we are all longing for spring at this point! What a long winter this has been in so many ways. I think many people are feeling a bit discombobulated at this point with the weather flipping back and forth and the uncertainty of what is going to happen with COVID. To mask or not? To gather or not? Some people are even feeling burned out with the whole thing...
"Healing from burnout" is the theme of a special Healthcare Worker Retreat that I am excited to be providing Reflexology sessions for. Retreatants will have the chance to attend a workshop led by Vicky Boateng, a Coach and RN who has been caring for patients in the ICU during the pandemic. This retreat will also feature amazing food prepared by a real chef, yoga, meditation, a labyrinth walk and lots of chances to spend time in nature on the beautiful grounds of Crieff in Puslinch. See below for the details of this May retreat. Registration closes May 2nd. Please forward this information to others who may be interested.
And even if you don't manage to attend a retreat, do look after yourself and take some time for healing!
Donna-Michelle Rancoeur is a Registered Reflexologist (RRPR), a Reiki Master and an Indian Head Massage Practitioner.