Winter can be a really tricky time. The cold and dark means that we tend to live a more internal life. For some this can cause fear, isolation and sadness. Energy levels naturally dip and if life is expected to continue with the same level of drive and exertion, problems can arise.
Sometimes, it’s the busy-ness of life that stops us sitting with ourselves, knowing ourselves, and being OK with ourselves. If we’re not happy with ourselves, then this time can be scary. If we haven’t built our reserves throughout the year, and then naturally tone things down in autumn and winter, it can feel that we won’t have enough to get through. And that can be terrifying.
Here’s your winter survival guide.
In Chinese medicine terms, winter is when we should be still and quiet. It is a great time to try and tune in to our true essence, aided by internal work such as meditation and reflection. Winter enables us time to pause and gather strength, conserving rather than using our reserves. Like the trees that look bare outside, there’s vital work going on. But, it’s happening deep inside. It is this concentrated, internal force of winter that enables the power of a seed to emerge in spring.
And if we follow the energetics of winter, we can help burst into spring full of energy, vision and a sense of purpose.
Below are some tips based on the teachings of Chinese medicine. These should help you get through this season feeling well, happy and raring to go in the spring.
Personally, I would also add that it’s so important to get out into the natural daylight as much as possible. Take that lunch break and go for a walk! I don’t suffer with SAD but I do use a Lumie SAD light first thing to help keep my circadian rhythm in sync. And I go to bed earlier and lie in a little later than the rest of the year. I do all I can to keep my vitamin D levels up. I’m very lucky that I can set my hours but I know how important this is to my health. I live by the teachings of my winter survival guide!
A Winter Survival Guide (N Gumenick 1997 & J Elias)
Get plenty of rest
Delve deep into your true essence
Make time for meditation, reflection and journalling
Practice self-acceptance – see yourself, understand yourself, accept yourself, all without judgement
Nourish yourself with cooked, wholesome foods
Drink plenty of water
Keep warm and protect your neck, shoulders and lower back from the cold and wind
Spend meaningful time with those most important to you
I hope there’s something here to help. Plus check out my previous blog all about having open, honest conversations, without conflict or disharmony. This can be key at Christmas!
Do get in touch if you want some help with discovering what makes you, you and accepting every aspect of that. Coaching can be a fantastic way to tune into what’s really going on for you, and enabling you to choose what you want to do with that.