Just last week I broke out my heavy scarf, and today I realized I will soon need thermals under my jeans. My friends, Winter is on its way.
The rhythm of the natural word effects our physical, emotional, and spiritual lives. We show a little skin in the Summer, and hibernate in the Winter. We fall in love during Spring fever, and feel full of gratitude in the Fall. Each sacred season brings us blessing and challenges -- mind, body, and soul -- and isn't it great to have wise friends along for the journey?
Today I'd like to introduce you to some wisdom from around the web for Wintertime. Since I've moved to Denmark, the days are short and the Winter blues are strong. That's why I'm so thankful for Silvia at Dreamer Girl, the lovely lass from the Netherlands now living in Finland. If anyone knows how to survive short days and gray skies, it's Silvia and she has her very practical and neatly organized seasonal advice up here, including this helpful bit of permission giving:
...when the Blues arrives, be gentle with yourself. Remember that mood swings come with the shifts in seasons, hibernate if you feel like it, but don't forget to come up for air once in a while.
Along with the weather-based blues, some of you may be hit with financial strains and worries. Money is a very earthy, practical matter, but Lord knows it hits you heart and soul as well. In the face of a U.S. financial downturn (and it's effect on international commerce) I'm grateful for my wise IRL friend, Kate Phillips at The Garden of Plenty who points out that the cure for the recession may lie within.
I believe we have to stop pretending that our outer circumstances dictate our inner thoughts and emotions. We need to discover the power, the creative force, that lies within. And when financial challenges come our way, we can accept them as our teacher, and then move forward to create something new.
Finally one of the things that can wear on our souls during Winter hibernation is a lack of friendly interaction. I'm combating my tendency to hole-up and get depressed by scheduling a S.A.D. Prevention Party each month. (The invites through March are already sent out, so now I'm committed!) These little shindigs are keeping my spirits up and helping up build a community in this new city. If you are working on new friendships and connections, you might turn to Jamie Ridler Studios for advice. In this article at BizNik Jamie lists some advice for finding your tribe, including the tale of this breakthrough moment:
...I met one group of women that looked at me rather like I was an alien, none of us quite knowing what to say next. And guess what? It was absolutely fine. For the first time in my life I didn't hold a judgment about myself or about them.
Now, doesn't all that let your soul rest a little easier? The Winter blues may knock you down, but they can't keep you down. You've got skills, my friend!
What are your tips and tricks for taking care of mind-body-soul during the Winter season? Do tell in the comments below.
Rachelle Mee-Chapman is an alt-minister, mom, and writer blogging at Magpie Girl, and now at Food Hero. Find her *8 Things for beating the Winter Blues here. She'll send you helpful links and updates if you follower her on Twitter. Thanks for reading!
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