In part one of this two part series, “Adjusting to Winter”, I focused on the physical aspects of working with the season change. In this second part, I am focusing on the emotional and spiritual aspects of adjusting to winter.
In winter we are, most of us, dealing with gray days, less light and colder weather. We know that spring is coming, but winter has just begun. Since winter is a time of rest and introspection, if you are challenged by slowing down winter may be a difficult season for you energetically.
Many traditions decorate with evergreens during this time, symbolizing the continuity of life. And bonfires were thought to help the sun burn more brightly. While Fall is the time of the harvest, abundance and manifestation. Winter is about the seed, going into dormancy, hibernating, going within. That dormant state, seemingly dead, but not dead, just resting in its potential. Being in harmony with the season is about being in harmony with nature, being in harmony with self. So let yourself slow down, sleep more, dream and reconnect with self.
Like in the myths of Inanna and Persephone take this time to go to the underworld and explore what is hiding in the shadows. Often we hide not just what we are ashamed of but also our gifts. What part of yourself are you not allowing to shine in the world? Winter can be a time of self-discovery and growth. Think of winter as the time to do that internal exploration in preparation for the new growth of spring. Get rid of what is weighing you down.
Many of us during the holidays find our schedules and routines disrupted. This can be a great way to relax and enjoy loved ones, but can also wreak havoc on our habits of eating, exercise and other self-care. For some the holidays are a joyful time of friends and family and celebration. For others, the holidays are a difficult time, highlighting what is missing from our lives. And for many, the holidays are a mix of the two. Whatever is true for you, it is often not your usual rhythm and flow so some adjustment is needed.
As much as you possibly can, continue your self-care even when you are busy. Sometimes the time crunch is a reality and letting some things slide is simply necessary. Consider that you are taxing your adrenals, just pushing and doing too much. So, take a break when you can, moderation can be key and remember that this pace is not forever, there is, hopefully, an end in sight. You have worked hard over the years to develop those good habits. So, if you do need to let go of them for a short time, try not to let that be the new norm. Avoid the all-or-nothing trap.
What follows are some essences to support you during this time. I suggest you read through them and see what resonates for you. Then pare down your list to one or two. There is a universal quality to some of these, so for some, the list of what resonates can get quite long.
Returning of the light. If the cloudy weather and having less sun impacts your mood, there is some help for you:
Solstice Sun (Alaskan Essences, www.alaskanessences.com ) energy of the sun; affects the movement of energy through our physical bodies; SADD, open hearts and energy pathways in body so are able to receive more light and make more efficient use of the energy within that light; also works with integration helpful during life changing times
Sun (Keeping Time, www.stargazerli.com ) warm, uplifting, radiant; literally the energy of the sun
Yellow Rose (Rose Chakra Essences, www.lunafina.com ) – bringing in your own sun
If you need support in slowing down, nurturing and restoring your reserves, consider the following:
Deep Rest Combination (Hawaiian Essences, www.janebellessences.com ) get beneath the stress to retune, recharge and reconnect in deep embodied peace
Moon (Keeping Time, www.stargazerli.com ) Comforting, nourishing, gentle
Perhaps you want to deepen your connection with your dreams this winter, if so, consider the following:
Neptune (Keeping Time, www.stargazerli.com ) infinite, dreamy, waves
Mugwort – brings clarity, clears negativity, enhances dreams; can be stimulating to some people
Other good support during this time:
Persian Lilac (Greek Tree Essences, www.melissaassilem.com ) relates to crown chakra, recognizing our wings to take flight into the realms of the spirit world; when you cannot see the beauty of your life; helps keep your heart in your perspective
Aleppo Pine (Greek Tree Essences, www.melissaassilem.com ) for those who hold onto everything too tightly and hoard until they are bloated with ‘stuff’. This tree will help you to donate some of the old to make room for the new. Eliminates the overload. detoxifies
Chamomile – takes to deeper state of relaxation in meditation, opens heart to psychic possibilities
Chalice Well (Alaskan Essences, www.alaskanessences.com )unconditional love and support; connects us to support that we may not be aware of; challenges the belief systems and emotional blockages that stand in the way of a stronger connection to the Universal love and support
Labrador Tea (Alaskan Essences, www.alaskanessences.com ) balancing extreme states, addictions, lack of unity between physical, emotional and mental – difficulty coming back to center after trauma helps center, energize and integrate and unifies
Buffalo Gourd (Desert Alchemy, www.desert–alchemy.com ) out of balance, overextended, mood swings, depleted, maintaining deep inner place of healing and calm while participating in activities; balance of inner and outer, soothes nervous system
Essences can be used one at a time or in groups. However, if you are new to essences or very sensitive energetically, I recommend that you start with just one essence and slowly add in additional ones. That way you can ‘get to know’ each essence individually and connect with its energy.
This season I invite you to let yourself sink into the dark, into the dreamtime, into self. Find the gifts of self that are there.