…I will make sure that my flowers can bloom this summer.
We can’t rush the blooming of a plant any more than we can rush the changing of a season. They are obviously one and the same.
We can’t have it every way. We cannot waste energy clinging to the dead leaves if we want to have the best chance of growing the new ones.
I believe that in doing even one of these things this week will facilitate the offering of our last dead leaves to the future nourishment of Mother Earth in exchange for our blooming newness in seasons to come:
1. Going outside and being in the winter sunshine and shadows. We can walk down our street, lane, path (or yellow brick road), noticing the winter around us. An explorative quest into our local surroundings can be a powerful way to take in how this season is—with the excitement of watching changes in the months to come. Taking a photo of how things look now can encourage us to look more deeply at what we see and compare this as time passes to highlight the transformations.
2. Going inside and delving in our own winter sunshine and shadows. Winter and its final days can be a poignant time to hibernate, retreat and nest in. With longer days, more darkness and less heat there is the time and space to do this without being compelled to be out enjoying the sunshine. We can shed old beliefs and patterns that no longer serve us, like the tree sheds its final leaves from the past cycle of seasons.
3. Appreciating the flowers of the season. The earth provides us with what we need as we need it and by nurturing ourselves with what is in season we link ourselves more closely with the present. From flowers and forageable gems that can be found in nearby nature to fruit and vegetable boxes from local, especially sustainable farms, the offerings of the earth are ready to be enjoyed and appreciated.
4. Appreciating the flowers of our season. Before the excitement of the peak of spring and the fullness of summer we can take stock of the flowers and fruits we have cultivated in ourselves. We undertake a lifelong journey through our own seasons, cycles and chapters and in these we have the opportunity to grow, blossom, shed, seed and grow again. It is as important to celebrate the fruits of our labours as much as it is to notice and appreciate the relentless change—our only certainty.
5. Utilising a lengthier night. In the long days of summer we quite rightly feel compelled to enjoy the (sometimes) abundant sunshine and it can be the best time to share the joys of life with others; eating, drinking, lost in music and beautiful festivals and being outside late. In the winter, or early Spring, we can shelter from the cold or darkness and invest in learning something new or creating something inspired, connecting more internally. Winter nights probably give us the best chance possible for taking stock and slowing down to conserve energy for when summer returns.
6. Lighting a fire in our homes and stoking the soulful fire within. Candles and fire can be poignant in celebrating special moments and are representative of burning the unnecessary and bringing light to our winter shadows.
7. Honouring our winter moon. The moon cycles year round and as we pass through each new, waxing, full and waning stage we can harness its energy through every winter day. By syncing up in setting new intentions as it is born new again and watching them culminate as it reaches fullness we can add power to progressing our dreams and magic to our adventures. As we watch it grow we can embody and amplify our wishes. When it nudges us to glance up at it, a little bit bigger than the previous days we are reminded to check in on our own growth and change. As we watch it disappear again we can let go of what we don’t need and be reminded that everything preciously passes.
8. Saluting our winter sun. Activities like yoga can connect us to the sun all year round as we appreciate it through salutations and build warmth and fire within. The heat that we can create in styles such as Vinyasa Flow burns toxins within us, keeps our muscles and bones warm, active and healthy and ensures we are glowing right through to summer again.
9. Not waiting to spring clean and clear the way for new growth. We don’t need to pass a single winter second longer before dumping every possession that doesn’t represent the life we want to live or the person we know ourselves to truly be, buried under all of our conditioning, out-of-date beliefs and past traumas. We can spend a winter or early spring hour a week engaging in counselling or therapy, having a clear out of our material possessions or dancing, singing, creating or laughing our own way to clarity and freedom. There has never been a more appropriate season or moment than now. When the shoots of spring emerge we want them to have the space and energy they truly deserve to grow uninhibited so that in the summer we can observe them blooming and thriving.
Long live winter, you beautiful nurturing season! And tell joyful spring, as you tag her in, that she will be welcomed and honoured as she arrives.
Author: Louise Lamorna Phillips
Editor: Travis May
Photo: Author’s Own