July 25, 2017

Understand your “Ayurvedic Mind” Type—a Quick Guide.

We’re living in an age characterized by stress, tension, and most importantly, speed.

Who can get promoted the fastest? Who will be the first one to take an envious summer vacation? Who’s going to be the first to tweet on a political change? Who is going to upload that first selfie—with the perfect pout—on social media?

Everywhere we go, we want to be fast, fast, fast!

It’s obvious that we are all mentally tensed all the time. We’re being forced to live under the invisible but dominating pressure of society. The question that arises is: How do we free ourselves from the shackles of stress and tension?

It is important to understand that one remedy against mental tension may be useful for one, but may be completely useless for another person. Hence, we need to switch to Ayurveda psychology, which offers us the opportunity to understand the nature of the mind in a completely unique way.

In this article, I am going to help you see which mind you belong to and offer you some quick remedies to balance yourself.

Ayurveda psychology categorizes the mind according to three doshas that represent five material elements: ether, air, fire, water, and earth. Understanding what dosha you belong to is essential as it signifies what psychological tendencies and diseases you may be susceptible to.

This way, Ayurveda psychology gives us the key to understanding our minds and allows us to opt for solutions that are suitable for our mind type.

To understand what your mind type is, grab a pencil and paper and record your answers to the following questions:

Vata: The force of movement.

Answer the following questions to see if your mind is vata.

>> Are you confused about decisions in your love/professional life?
>> Are you compassionate?
>> Does your mind constantly think or analyse situations, environments, and people?
>> Do you feel unhappy without reason?
>> Are you creative?
>> Do you find it difficult to concentrate?
>> Do you dwell on the past so much that it affects the present?
>> Do you fall erratically in love or into impossible situations?
>> Are you forgetful and do you often lose things?
>> Is it hard for you to believe that you are lovable or good enough?

If you answered “yes” more than five times, then you have a vata mind.

Vata is the combination of ether and air, and just like these elements, it is the most difficult dosha to understand. People with a vata mind are talented, compassionate, open-minded, positive, trusting, and forgiving. However, it is difficult for them to maintain balance, as they are strongly affected by their surroundings. An imbalanced vata mind is insecure, fearful, unable to focus, and carries excessive guilt.

Try our tips for balancing vata in your mind;

>> Eat warm, easily-absorbed foods in small portions.
>> Follow a daily routine.
>> Set small targets so that you can complete them.
>> Avoid starting too many things at once, since confusion will throw you off.
>> Spend time understanding and expressing your emotional needs.
>> Try to be in loving and supportive environments.
>> When you feel emotional, try using the stabilizing mantra, “this too shall pass.”
>> Choose mood-stabilizing colours: orange, yellow, and pink. (Avoid grey and black.)
>> Use incenses of patchouli, frankincense, sandalwood, and cedar.

Pitta: The dominating force.

Answer the following questions:

>> Are you easily irritated?
>> Do you speak without thinking when provoked?
>> Do you feel the urge to destroy and break things when you are frustrated?
>> Do you like to be in control of people or situations?
>> Do you hate surprises?
>> Is it hard for you to relax in your free time?
>> Do you get bored in quiet places?
>> Do you answer questions with another question?
>> Is it hard for you to multitask?
>> Are you impatient?

If you answered yes more than five times, then you have a pitta mind.

Represented by the fire element, pitta tends to be hot in their personality. Pitta is difficult to argue with, they criticize, blame others, and take longer to realise their mistakes. They are logical, competitive, good leaders, intelligent, goal-oriented, and make rational rather than emotional decisions.

When pitta is imbalanced, they tend to overwork and develop an ego, seeing only their way of doing things. It is common for them to be irritable and angry for no reason, which leads to manipulative behaviour.

Try our tips to balance pitta in your mind:

>> Reduce spicy and oily food, coffee, and alcohol.
>> Appreciate and accept what you have got at this moment.
>> Be within nature and relaxing environments.
>> Buy yourself flowers often.
>> Expose yourself to the full moon light.
>> Take some time out for reflecting upon your behaviour every day.
>> Listen to calming or devotional music.
>> Choose pitta-pacifying colours: blue and green.
>> Use incenses of rose, jasmine, lily, lotus, and sandalwood

Kapha: The force of harmony.

Answer the following questions:

>> Do you avoid moving or travelling to new places?
>> Do you enjoy being at home?
>> Are you are hesitant about meeting new people?
>> Does it take you a long time to learn new things?
>> Do you seek happiness in food?
>> Is your normal speaking voice quiet and slow?
>> Do you love being in water?
>> Do you dislike very noisy places?
>> Are you usually the best listener among your groups?
>> Are you always happy and content regardless of the circumstances?

If you answered yes to more than five points, then you have a kapha mind.

The third dosha, kapha is made up of the earth and water elements. It is the force that creates balance and harmony in the body and mind. Psychologically, kapha is slow and methodical, and they love routine and familiarity. They are usually very devoted and loyal in their religions, relationships, and at work. However, they tend to become lethargic or unmotivated, isolate themselves, and turn to food and sleep for emotional comfort. A kapha imbalance can also make them greedy, and due to their naturally lower metabolism, they become obese, which exacerbates all of their other problems.

Try our tips to help balance the kapha in your mind

>> Seek stimulating activities, new experiences, and regular exercise.
>> Set a sleep routine where you wake up before sunrise and avoid naps.
>> Reduce clutter and get rid of anything you are hoarding.
>> Choose colours that are warm and bright: yellow, orange, and red.
>> Use warming aromas like cloves, camphor, cinnamon, eucalyptus, and juniper.

Knowing your mind type is the key to a happy, healthy, and stable mind.

Once you know your mind type, you can introduce the correct changes in your life that will benefit you the most. Follow these ayurvedic tips, and I promise that you’ll take a significant leap toward empowerment.

Author: Shivani Sood 
Image: Brooke Cagle, Averie Woodard & Maxime Bhm at Unsplash
Editor: Catherine Monkman
Copy Editor: Danielle Beutell
Social Editor: Yoli Ramazzina

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