Winter is a time when all of nature goes inward. It really isn’t the time to be running around trying to find the perfect present. Instead, it is the time to remember how to be still, listen deeply, and be present.
When I lived in snow country, I was often forced to surrender to winter. In the fall, when I could feel winter coming, I would begin to organize my life in a manner that enabled me to stop, go inside, and listen deeply. During that time, I would create time to connect deeply with myself and reflect on what wanted to be born in the spring.
When I have lived in more temperate zones, however, I have found it was easy to get caught up in doing too much and not gain the deep restorative benefits of winter.
Here is an example:
Many years ago, when I lived in snow country my house lost power for five days. At first, I was frustrated and felt inconvenienced, but by the end of the first day I began to enjoy the quiet and could feel the benefits of the slower and gentler pace. It gave me time to ponder my thoughts and review my dreams.
I cooked on my woodstove, keep my food in a cooler, and wrote, drew, and read. My body started to find its natural rhythm. With no electricity to keep me in an artificial sleep-wake cycle, I went to sleep when the sun went down. It was a very peaceful time; in fact, I enjoyed the stillness so much that I was annoyed when the power came back on again. It was then that I decided: whenever I am stressed-out during this time of year, I need to pretend that the power has gone out so I can stop, go inside, and reap the benefits of winter.
But how can you accomplish this if your life is really busy and you feel pulled in too many directions?
I think the first step is to look at your “to-do list” realistically. Do all of the things on your list have to happen today or this week? Or can some of them be postponed? If they all have to be done today or this week, you can still gain the benefits of winter by slowing down your breathing, and approaching all of your tasks in a slow and meditative manner.
With this in mind, I invite you to explore some of the ICWIB! art activities and videos for FREE because they are a wonderful way for you, and the children in your life, to learn how to go inward, reconnect deeply with yourself, and discover what wants to be born through you in the spring. These simple actions can help you gain the benefits of this season and set the tone for the upcoming year.