Hello Winter! December is here bringing the beginning of winter (in the northern hemisphere), the festivities of Yule, the opening of ski resorts, the closing of another annual cycle and a cue for nature to rest.
Mirror the qualities of nature this winter to stay energised and in-sync. Plant life retreats underground sustained only from the roots. Snow covers the high ground like a winter blanket and the natural world is on recharge. With winter comes the cold. The the sun stays low in the sky and natures buzz subsides.
Water is the element that best represents the energy of Winter. Mirror the qualities of water to stay balanced this winter. Calm, reflective, flowing with ease and always finding a level no matter what obstacles get in the way. During this season it’s vital that we rest up, nurture ourselves and recharge our energy stores readying ourselves for the next cycle of seasons. Since this may contradict with your December social calendar take some time around the winter solstice to pause tune inwards for some mindful reflection.
December is a busy month. Make this one to remember. Here are some festive tips to avoid feeling frazzled under the mistletoe.
5 Daily Winter Rituals
1. Tis the season of generosity, kindness and compassion. Start by being kind and compassionate to yourself. Be to yourself how you are to your best friend. Talk yourself up instead of down. Hone in on your good qualities and features and disregard the rest. In turn you’ll be better able to be kind and compassionate to others. Perhaps try to be extra kind to unkind people as they are the ones who may need it the most….
2. A morning spritzer of water and grapefruit juice – boost vitamin C antioxidants and combat the excesses of the festive season. A little more lux than lemon water and packed with flavour. Go for pink grapefruit to be tickled pink!
3. Boost your circulation in the morning or whenever your body feels chilled with heat building Sun Salutations and wrap up warm particularly around the neck and kidneys where we can lose vital body heat.
4. The biting wind and cold and indoor central heating plays havoc on the skin and the festive indulgences with our digestion and elimination. Reduce inflammation with nourishing wholefoods and antioxidant rich green /herbal teas. In particular think of Tumeric as gold in winter time. Tumeric is a root herb and spice with well documented bio-active, anti-inflammatory and medicinal properties. Check out WellnessMamas practical ways to add tumeric to your diet. Swapping coffee and hot chocolate for warm golden milk is a choice of pure gold.
5. Use essential oils for calming, warming aromas in your home or workspace to lift and re-energize your mood. Read more about the benefits of essential oils HERE. Apply a few drops of lavender oil at night on your pillow for a good nights sleep or invest in a bug busting mind soothing blend like Altitude Oil.
Winter Solstice mindfulness
The change in seasons is marked in the celestial calendar by the Solstice – 21 December. The official start Winter! (or Summer for those south of the equator) The solstice happens twice a year in June and December. In Summer it marks the day when the sun appears highest in the sky giving to us our longest day. In Winter it marks the day when the sun appears lowest in the sky and gives us our shortest day of the year.
For a few days surrounding Solstice, the Sun has a wee pause along its celestial path (as viewed from Earth). It appears to stop before reversing direction hence the name ‘Solstice’ derived from Latin meaning the ‘Sun stands still’. So take some time out from the festive pace yourself to stand still or better yet take a seat.
…When you loose touch with your inner stillness – you lose touch with yourself
When you lose touch with yourself – you lose yourself in the world… Ekhart Tolle
Use the long dark nights before Christmas for some quiet reflection on the past year.
- Reflect inwards, and be curious as to how you may have changed or developed over the last year. Acknowledge who you find there – the complete picture – the good the bad and the ugly.
- Take insight from all your achievements and all your disappointments. What lessons have you learned from last year?
- Find closure with any ongoing struggles and wipe the slate clean before going forward into winter. How? Accept it all without resistance. Just let it be and trust that new vibes are born from the darkness.
Use the week before New Year for dreamy day-dreams
- Light a candle every morning to symbolise the transition towards longer days and shorter nights. Watch the flame as you start your day and imagine it lighting up your imagination.
- Having shed some light on your success and failures from the past year, allow yourself to dream. Big open minded dreams…..forget about logic just dream…. what would you love your dream year to look like? feel like? be like? Take some time to contemplate, imagine and empower your hopes and potential. Allow yourself some daily stillness to let your inner compass re-calibrate in line with your imagination and be better able to direct yourself to a lighter brighter year ahead.
Take the time to sync with the Suns new cycle. Take the time to reflect, pause and stand still with your winter mindfulness. Follow the sun – a crucial step in your Winter rituals.
It’ll bring you more gifts than Santa ever could and creates a fertile ground to plant your New Year intentions.
For Winter vibes immersions join me at Chalet Rosiere for a Ski and Yoga Retreat in the French Alps