Here we are. The shortest day of the year. The start of winter. The end of the year, nearly.
I love the magic of the solstice. It celebrates the quiet, the pause, the fallow. And it bears witness to the dark. It’s hard to sit with darkness, whether that’s something we’re uncomfortable with in ourselves, the grief of loss, or all the mud that’s been slung far and wide across the media and in our lives this year. The world feels so unsettled right now.
But there is always a lesson in the dark stuff. Sometimes it takes a hell of a long time to figure that out. Sometimes leaning on myth and story and creative tools can help the tease the story, the lesson, the meaning, out of the darkness. Some juicy tools for rooting down and digging into this season.
- Chani Nicolas: She has completely upended my skepticism about astrology. Perhaps because her weekly missives are more an offering of deep wisdom with a touch of humor, well-written and full of juicy nuggets to digest throughout the week. Lean on her if you need to build some story out of the darkness of the season, or if you’d like a little bit of guidance and intention in your week: The Winter Solstice closes one cycle and begins another. It is a time that is used to set intentions for the year ahead. A season to plant our seeds in the darkest hours of the year. A time that marks the shortest day and longest night. A time where many cultures celebrate the miracle of light and the miracles related to it. It’s a time to focus on the internal light we can find in ourselves and in each other.
- Winter survival tips: 1) Give in. At the risk of using the season’s most redundant word: get cozy. Don’t expect too much of yourself, go to bed early, and revel in sleeping lots, reading, staying warm, and being snug. 2) Go outside????. I know it can be tough when you go to work in the dark and leave in the dark, but no matter your situation, try to get as much outside time during daylight hours a week, as you can. Balance is key. 3) Eat heavy. I don’t mean sugar and fries, but hearty roots, broths, stews, and fats. There’s a reason potato, beet and pumpkin season is now! Healthy, hearty foods will keep us warm and help our immunities too. Find the rest here
- I really loved my friend Laura’s thoughtful essay on the value of restorative and yin yoga. Winter is such a great season for a slow practice that nourishes us.
- And lastly, the wonderfully rich, nuanced and story-driven Wild Unknown Tarot. A great activity on a long night.