Habits and rituals create moments that add up into experiences that create memories and change our lives. If you are looking to begin your Ayurvedic journey in a simple way that will have lasting impact in your quality of life, implementing a self care ritual into your daily routine is the way to go. Not dissimilar to a ritual such as brushing teeth, flossing, taking a shower, dinacharyas are daily activities centered around taking care of your body that positively effect all areas of life.
Different activities will suit you based on several factors -
1) Experience level with the new activity. Although dinacharya's are relatively simple, actually doing them can be quite challenging. Allow yourself lots and lots of time to allow a new practice to authentically enter your life. There may be some push and pull with allowing the new practice into your daily routine. Personally, I have found that years have passed before I could actually allow neti pot into my life. I resisted for a long time, even though I love to have the pressure in my sinuses cleared.
2) Your constitutional make-up. As with our astrological chart, our bodies are constructed uniquely according to the elements. Earth, air, water, fire and ether. Depending on the specific ratio of elements in your constitition, ie. how much earth is in your body, specific dinacharya's will benefit you. For example, someone with more air (vata) in their constitution will definitely want to focus on abhyanga (self oil massage) and feel immediate benefits.
3) Surrounding environment and availability of tools for your selected practices. Depending on your enthusiasm and access to specific tools, some practices will be easier to access than others. Similarly, the environment you are living or traveling in will necessitate certain practices be prioritized over others. If you are kapha and having trouble getting going in the morning after a restless night or staying up late, prioritizing bed time self care will benefit your peace of mind.
The main piece of advice that I have for dinacharyas - Pick ones that you want to explore, and then let yourself fall in love with the practice of doing them. This is self care - not an excuse to be a task master or feel guilty for skipping or changing up your routine. Stay tuned for more posts about specific dinacharyas and how they relate to different constitutions, imbalances and environments.