My eyes are my favourite part of me. Not for how they look but for how they see.
- Frau Feuermeise
Of all the parts of our body in need of consideration in our month of rest, surely the eyes are top of the list. When we wish to sleep, we shut our eyes. We call a nap a bit of shut eye. Our eyes are at work from the moment we open them when we waken in the morning to the moment we shut them to sleep.
Soothing the eye muscles and taking the pressure off them and resting the optic nerve by shutting out light is the best way to rest tired eyes. So firstly, here are some soothing eye-dee-as for tired or puffy eyes to put the sparkle back into them.
Mix together 1 tablespoon of rosewater and 1 tablespoon of cold almond milk. Dip a washcloth into the mixture and once lying down place over your eyes for ten minutes. Relax.
Cover your eyes
Cover your eyes with an eye mask or some kind of soft material to block out all light. While sitting or lying down in a relaxed position (but not sleeping), imagine the world around you is black. By “relaxing into the blackness,” you are teaching your brain that your eyes do not have to always strain. Your eyes will function better through relaxation techniques rather than stress.
Wear polarised sunglasses to protect the eyes from the sun’s glare and from UV rays. This is every bit as important in winter sunlight as in summer.
Rub your hands together for 15 seconds to warm them and then cup them over your eyes touching your forehead sightly with your fingertips and resting the heals of your palms on your cheekbones. Allow the eyes to absorb the darkness like a sponge and bathe in the warmth.
Sunning is a great way to start your day! Stand in front of a door or window that receives plenty of natural sunlight. Close your eyes and allow the sunlight to gently warm your eyelids. Be sure to do this without your glasses or contacts lenses. Sunlight can help the retina release dopamine, which leads to healthy eye development.
* Be sure to not directly stare at the sun for this relaxation method.
Blue Light Lenses & Anti-Reflective Coating
Blue light is transmitted when you look at your tablet, phone or computer screen. The eye does not block blue light well, therefore causing digital eye strain and eye fatigue. Such light can damage the cells of the retina, as well as mess with your sleep/wake cycle. Blue light glasses, as well as anti-reflective coating on your regular eyeglasses, help to filter out harmful blue light to combat eye strain and sleeplessness caused by excessive screen time. Rest your eyes from a computer screen every twenty minutes by looking away and focusing on something at a distance of ten to twenty feet. Blink and re-focus.
Remember to use your eyes to notice and observe too. Research shows that doing this in nature increases our levels of happy hormones - especially in the winter months when nature is not especially parading its beauty and we least expect to come across a flower, a vivid red leaf, a glorious dawn or a sunset etc.
Eye rest exercise for today
Watch the film The Eye has to Travel on Vimeo here https://vimeo.com/153660328 It looks at the life and career of Diana Vreeland one time editor of Vogue magazine. Or watch Finding Vivian Maier available at iTunes film rental for €3.99 - a documentary film about a mysterious nanny who took over 100,000 photographs that were hidden in storage lockers and discovered decades later. Vivian Maier is now considered one of the twentieth centuries greatest photographers. No one ever knew she took photographs and she never showed her work to another soul. Each of these films show you how others use their eyes to not simply see but to notice and observe how the ordinary can be extraordinary. Beauty is in the eye of the beholder…..if the eye is exercised to behold beauty. And witnessing beauty is one of the most powerful forms of resting the mind and spirit.
Have a super Tuesday,
Magical Rest companion workbook available.
Rest is the potent elixir that fuels the efficiency of everything we do, are and wish to be. We rest for healing, for wisdom, for radiance and for love. I have created the Magical Rest 30 day program as a stand alone personal month long journey through the resting of all of your being, mentally, physically, emotionally, spiritually, creatively, sensory and socially. Each day gifts you a restful exercise, practice or ritual and sets some reflective work to help you connect more fully to your own inner wisdom and personal magic.