The lessons nature teaches us at this time of the year are about death and resurrection, rest and introspection. In the cold, dark months the leaves fall from the trees, many plants die, and the weather is cold and inhospitable.
In the South we do not experience this as much, but occasionally we will have times when it is almost impossible to travel, and the cold is so bitter that venturing outside is an ordeal of putting on lays of clothing, hats and gloves.
In the North, especially the far north, the winters are dangerous, dark and long. To understand the historical and current significance of the dangers of winter, read a book or novel set in the northern territories in the winter.
Just as the plants die and hibernate, so do many animals. They spend time and energy preparing to survive the winter. Many people do the same, if not physically then emotionally.
They look at winter as a time to suffer through and fall into inactivity and depression. Seasonal Affective Disorder is real and painful and even that can be treated and combated with behavior changes and treatments.
A change in perspective is necessary so that winter can be a better time.
Winter is a natural time of quiet and introspection. It is a time to look inside and ask yourself some questions. These short days and dark nights can help you see who lives deep inside of you
Here are 5 questions to guide your thought process:
- In what ways do you prevent yourself from enjoying life?
When you find pleasure, how do you stop yourself from enjoying it?
What is the purpose of these behaviors?
How can you find pleasure in your life?
What do you need to do to enjoy and keep pleasure in your life?
Perhaps this year, with some preparation and planning, we can plant the seeds for a more intuitive, simpler, and natural New Year.
Next week we will look briefly at how you can use this information to find a different way to approach the new year.