In order to keep the tridoshas in a state of healthy equilibrium and digestion & metabolism (agni) in proper order, Ayurveda prescribes specific daily routine - dina (day) & charya (behavior). The various stages to this daily routine, influenced by the specifics of your prakriti, enables you to make the most out of your life are:
Since our biological clocks are naturally tuned to the rising and setting of the sun, it is obviously better for us to wake up at sunrise in perfect harmony with our natural clocks, ideally to let the body soak in the positive energies of the sun’s rays and to become charged for the day. Drinking a glass of warm water helps flush out all toxins accumulated overnight in the body.
The last part of the night being ruled by vata involves the process of elimination. Dawn is the best time to eliminate body's physical waste. Proper elimination also helping remove the kapha that naturally accumulates overnight. Defecation once or twice daily is best, preferably not immediately after a meal. However urination any time of the day is okay. Examine your elimination each morning and if you notice any abnormalities it indicating poor digestion, go on a fast. It will allow the body to rest and correct the digestive system before the disorder compounds. Never suppress the natural physical urges such as elimination, hunger, thirst, sleep, sneezing, yawning, vomiting, flatulence and ejaculation, since this will lead to discomfort and even disease.
Thorough washing of the face, mouth, eyes, nose and limbs cleans our body. Best done with clean water, accompanied by brushing of the teeth (should be repeated after every meal), scraping off a toxic coating from the tongue, occasional gargling of salt water with a pinch of turmeric to keep gums, mouth & throat healthy, proper cleaning of the nose, ears and washing eyes with warm water. Keep your hair trimmed, nails filed and wear clean clothes. Feel free to use perfumes in moderation.
Either passive massage or active aerobics or both, doing different yoga asana, regular exercise increases the body's stamina and resistance to disease by stimulating the immune system, clearing all channels, promoting good blood circulation, clean bowel movements and burning fat. Exercising regularly can reduce anxiety. Depending on your age & body type, it is recommended that kapha’s do heavy exercises; pitta’s should do exercise in moderation and vata’s should do yoga and not do aerobics exercises. Never exert yourself more than half of your capacity during illness, just after a meal. Always do rhythmic breathing while exercising. Swimming, walking, jogging and even laughing are excellent alternate options.
Ayurveda recommends massages for every person - a regular self-massage with herbal oils is usually adequate but needs to be supplemented with professional massages occasionally. Massage makes the skin supple, controls vata by reducing cold, dryness, rough & erratic skin conditions, enhances blood circulation, encourages quicker removal of metabolic wastes and relaxes the body. Follow the normal direction of hair growth, use a little extra oil over the body's vital parts, massage the scalp and head at least weekly or just the soles of your feet if short on time.
Ideal for disciplining the mind, removing stress & strain, it is best to meditate after a quick bath to cleanse yourself. Critical in satisfying the mind's hunger, when done right it nourishes the brain and calms the soul. Controlling thoughts and desires are the key to longevity and good health. Meditation has to be sincere, heartfelt and reflect inwards. The simplest and healthiest way to meditate involves thinking about and focusing on the sun’s golden rays. Routine meditation acts as a shield against destabilizing influences promoting self-worth, you are in-control of yourself with calm and stable mind. Being in this state of mind can easily improve your overall health and outlook of life.
Clothes while shielding us from extreme temperatures, also tends to reflect the temperaments of the wearer in a society were projecting ones wealth and image by what you wear. Ideally clothes should always be light & airy, preferably made of natural fibers such as cotton, wool or silk. Always wear clean and never wear others clothes. Ayurveda believes that energy is brought into the body through the crown of the head and exits from the soles of the feet. In the process of existing from the feet it extracts abnormal heat and polluted energy usually collecting in the footwear we wear. So according to Ayurveda, avoid wearing other's footwear, try not to bring shoes into the house and walk barefoot whenever possible. Wooden sandals are healthier than animal skin or rubber soled shoes.
Since work consumes about one-third of our lives with success or failure in your profession affecting self-confidence & self-worth, it is important that the nature of work you choose to perform match well with your prakriti.
Vata people love work that requires sudden bursts of intense energy. But it tends to exhaust them also. So to balance it, they should be in routine slightly repetitive jobs. A soothing home and work environment is well suited to smooth out their rough edges. Vata folks need adequate rest, especially in the afternoons. The ideal jobs for Vata have enough excitement to hold their interest and sufficient routine to avoid imbalances.
Pitta people are very practical, make good administrators but are not original thinkers. By nature aggressive and self-promoting, these realists see everything as a contest that has to be won. Insisting on being in the forefront of all activity, they cram as much work as they can, demanding perfect functioning of their bodies all the time. They dislike delays and obstacles to their plans and must seriously try to be fair and keep their professional and private lives separate. They should avoid work that is physically irritating or involves heat (as welding or metal casting) and become good listeners. They should ideally have sufficient challenge to keep them occupied without the stress of severe competition.
Kapha people have innate stability and balance also making them great administrators. They must make a conscious effort bring about changes or variety to their otherwise staid and routine lives. Kapha people must ensure some form of physically activity with at work or leisure. Slow in the morning, competition is good for them though they may find it stressful.
Choice of Pet
Pets are often an extension of their owner's personalities; pets should be carefully chosen to have a therapeutic effect on your doshic imbalances.
Vata’s get along famously with dogs, since canine's are loveable, open-hearted, reassuring and stabilizing to their cold, fearful, fickle nature. Some do well with small, furry high- strung animals that stir the maternal instincts in the owners.
The cat is the Pitta’s favorite. With strong personalities the feline presents continuous challenges.
Kapha’s in turn prefer birds, sine avian's chirpiness helps them offset some of the dosha's natural ponderousness. For some large dogs may prove beneficial since dogs would encourages them to exercise along.
Choice of Partner
Ayurvedic wisdom suggests that like types make better mates because of similar mental processes, attitudes and sexual proclivities. Unfortunately, two people of similar dispositions are likely to have the same defects too. Choosing the right partner who will stimulate and inspire you to evolve into becoming a better individual becomes very important.
A state of physical inertia with mental relaxation, sleep promotes proper growth of the self. Night is the natural time to sleep and mid-day naps should not be more than 15 minutes long except for the very young or very old, very weak, diseased, exhausted or traumatized. Avoid having a full meal just before going to bed. Sleeping on the right side is the most relaxing and good for yoga. Sleeping on the left, helps digestive process and increases interest in food, sleep and sex. Sleeping on the back or on the stomach encourages disease. Sleeping with crown of the head facing east and feet into the west promotes the best meditative sleep. A quick shower or washing of the hands, feet & face just before going to bed improves sleep quality. A minimum of 6 to 8 hours of daily sleep is essential. The ideal form of sleep is the yogic state of complete physical motionlessness while retaining mental alertness & awareness.