By Sonya Francis
I used to say that I was a ‘Night Owl’, often going to bed at 1 or 2 a.m. I didn’t have the sensation of being tired. Instead, I would get a 2nd wind around 9 p.m. and work on all kinds of projects late into the next day. The reality was that ‘tired’ was my normal! This routine began 30 years ago, in my teen years. By 18 years old, I developed a headache that persisted until I discovered and began following Qi, or the Human Body Energy Clock a couple years ago.
In Chinese Medicine, our body’s vital energy is referred to as ‘Qi’ (pronounced ‘Chee’). Qi is the idea that there is a cyclic flow of energy through the body that moves in two hour intervals through the various organ systems. Qi is referred to as human body energy and is shown on a round ‘Clock’ face for better understanding.
For each window of 2 hours, there is an organ system operating at a peak energy. When one organ is at its peak energy, the organ at the opposite side of the clock, 12 hours away, is at its lowest ebb, or weakest.
The idea is to try when you can, to plan daily activity around an organ system’s peak energy, while avoiding actions that can tax a system when it’s energy is at its lowest ebb.
Our biological bodies are designed to go to bed around 10-11 p.m. and wake up by 6-7 a.m. to go down & get up with the sun. Each of us is unique and how much sleep varies, but an average of 8 hours is when many of us function at our best.
Studying Qi, I wondered if my habit of starting a new project at 9 p.m. instead of relaxing and preparing for bed, could be inhibiting my thyroid, adrenal, and hypothalmus glands from working. These vital glands are responsible for energy transfer, regulating temperature and metabolism. These three glands are referred to as the Triple Warmer on the Qi Clock, its highest energy being 9 – 11 p.m. Perhaps my energy transfer was backwards, giving me energy when it should have been put into reserve?
I began a quest to change my Night Owl status, especially if it meant my body might work more efficiently. Instead of starting a project at 8-9 p.m., I chose a quiet place to read and relax. It took about 3 months, but one night, I felt ‘tired’ around 9 p.m. I was so excited! This had to be the tired feeling people talked about! I put down the book and went to bed. In the morning, I was able to get up with my children before school AND stay up! I had so much energy and was more productive than ever before! The headache I had been so accustomed to, disappeared.
It took 3 months to reset my ‘Qi’ and change a 30 year habit. I wasn’t a member of the Owl family after all! I am proud to declare I’m a ‘Morning Person’ among fellow humans where I’ve always belonged! You can reset your own biological clock for more energy, too!
Sonya is a lifelong Bluewater area resident. She graduated from Yale High
School, SC4, Wayne and Trinity Natural Health School. She has worked as a
Licensed Veterinary Technician and Surgical Scrub Tech prior to receiving
her Naturopathy degree. As an organic gardener and nature lover, Sonya
looks forward to teaching and helping others through her guest writing
with Blue Water Healthy Living, a division of GBS Media.
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