The first time I took a dosha quiz, some 10 years ago with my late grandmother, I scored higher in kapha than the other two doshas.

While I had plenty of vata and pitta—because kapha scored highest—I wanted to learn more about this dosha. I remember my grandmother telling me that I was in good company, for Deepak Chopra claimed Kapha dominance, too.

One of the things both Deepak and I (and all others with a dominant Kapha dosha) had in common was this: Inertia, lack of motivation, lethargy, fatigue, and complacency when kapha is out of balance.

Kapha dosha is a combination of the water and earth elements. It is often compared to the winter season due to its damp and heavy nature.

It’s really easy for a kapha to lose motivation and inspiration, which begs the question, how do you inspire a kapha?

Well, that’s exactly what we’re going to find out in this article. Read on to discover just how your kapha dosha craves a pick me up, especially when aggravated kapha builds up in the mind.

Diet to Balance Kapha

Ayurveda says that kaphas need certain foods to balance their constitution and stay inspired. Spices that heat the system are really good for balancing kapha. These include:

  • Cayenne pepper
  • Chili pepper
  • Black pepper
  • Cumin
  • Cinnamon
  • Ginger

Consider making a ginger-turmeric steamer with oat milk and honey for a special drink. Sip warm ginger tea, and add cinnamon to warm oatmeal for breakfast. Warm (and even hot) foods and beverages are really good for inspiring kapha, and icy cold drinks should be eliminated from the diet altogether.

Read: How to Eat for Your Dosha Type

To prevent stagnation and complacency, kapha should avoid eating too much sugar. Staying away from sweet, sour, and salty foods is recommended, while favoring bitter, astringent, and pungent tastes is the way to go.

Focus on eating lighter meals, while staying away from heavy, dense ones, and always eat whole foods. Processed and refined foods are no good for any dosha.

Dinacharya for Inspiring Kapha Dosha

Ayurveda looks to nature for answers. In nature, there’s a daily routine, and the yogis call this elemental routine dinacharya.

Most animals and plants found in nature live their lives according to this natural process. Our physiology craves the same schedule, even in the modern day.

A kapha that needs balancing should adhere to the same daily schedule, which gives a sense of comfort as well as clarity—and even lightness of being.

Sticking to a daily routine may sound strict and even dull to some, but in reality, it’s a radical act of self-love and self-care, which kapha desperately needs!

The kapha that needs inspiration should wake early—around the same time each day—which should be at (or even a little before) six in the morning. With this schedule, going to bed between 10:00PM and 10:30PM is ideal.

Upon rising, drink a glass (or two) of warm water, which signals your bowels to get moving and eliminate toxins. Shortly thereafter, practice a short meditation practice—whatever you can stick to.

Then practice a self-massage with sunflower, safflower or sesame oil. This happens before you shower, and is known as abhyanga massage. It should eliminate the need for lathering lotion on your skin after a shower or bath.

After you bathe, dress in energizing colors. Reds, oranges, and yellows are great. If you don’t think these colors look good on you, simply make use of them in your environment.

Next, exercise, and if you can—break a sweat. Eat a healthy breakfast, and go about your day.

You may wish to fill your workspace with invigorating and uplifting essential oils, like peppermint and citrus oils. Aromatherapy is a great way to inspire kapha.

Read: 13 Most Commonly Used Essential Oils and How to Use Them

Eat lunch between 12:00 and 1:00PM, and practice a second brief meditation after work, around sunset. Enjoy dinner in the evening, and aim to finish eating by 7:00PM. Lights off by 10:30PM!

Yoga and Exercise to Inspire Kapha Dosha

When kapha lacks motivation and inspiration it needs a fairly vigorous yoga routine. Sun salutations to get the heart pumping, the lungs breathing, and the energy flowing are one of the best exercises to inspire kapha.

To clear and cleanse stagnant energy, energizing practices like yoga, tai chi, and martial arts are helpful, as are stimulating forms of exercise like swimming, brisk walking, jogging, cycling, and any other form of steady-state aerobic exercise.

Since kapha times are between 6:00AM and 10:00AM, as well as 6:00PM and 10:00PM, it’s best to move during these hours. An invigorating routine in the morning is best, while something that winds the system down in the evening (like an after dinner walk) supports the overall balancing of kapha dosha.

For asanas to balance the kapha read: 6 Yoga Poses for Balancing the Kapha

Breath and Inspire

Pranayama techniques that enliven kapha are:

Read: Kapalbhati versus Bhastrika: Comparing Two Powerful Pranayama

Adhere to these kapha-inspiring guidelines as needed. They’re great tips and tricks for keeping kapha dosha balanced, while warding off the sluggishness that so often gets the better of this warm, loving, and compassionate dosha.