With last week hosting the shortest day of the year (in the Northern Hemisphere), we officially welcomed back winter and are embracing the shift that solstice brings. It’s the season of cozy, slowing down, comfort and warming self-care regimes.
I used to dread winters, year-after-year, counting down until I could see more sunshine, run outside barefoot and be in my garden. Over the years however, I have learned to embrace this season with all the beautiful changes it brings and look forward to the freshness of this changing season. look forward to winter Solstice and celebrate things that I love about the season. The stunning sight of frost on trees, the INCREDIBLE sunrises and sunsets we always seem to get here in YEG in the winter and getting cozy by the fire… I LOVE sitting in front of the fireplace in the winter time, all cozy with a cup of chai tea or glass of vino. Winter is the season of snuggles, layers, warm blankets, loooong baths, smoke curling out of the chimneys of wood burning fireplaces and warming spices like clove, cinnamon, ginger and nutmeg.
Like with everything in this beautiful gift called life, winter Solstice is another necessary cycle with its own purpose, characteristics and wisdom. The more I embrace its ebb, flow and rhythm, the more I appreciate this season and all the gifts it bears. Instinctively, it’s a time to turn inwards, focusing on our bodies’ own rhythms and cycles in a different way. My self-care practice looks and feels different this time of year intentionally, as I align with the flow of this season. Some of these self-care practices include:
- Meditating in candle light
- Long hot baths with essential oils or bath essences like the Hauschka Spruce Warming Bath Essence
- Deep, long and slow breath work
- Increasing my infrared sauna sessions, enjoying its warmth, immune boosting and detoxing benefits
- Getting extra sleep. There is nothing like sleeping in the nude, cocooned in layers of plush blankies and covers. O.M.G. YES!!!!
- Diffusing mood boosting citrus essential oils like Palmarosa, Orange, Lime, Grapefruit, Lemon, and Tangerine
- Increasing my Vitamin D intake (as recommended by my naturopath)
- Dry brushing to boost circulation, then applying a natural plant oil or butter post shower, taking my time with each body part.
- Taking my workout outside: Whether it’s a long walk in the snow-covered park or cross country skiing (that I’m trying out this year!), there is nothing like enjoying that distinct energetic boost that only nature can provide.
- Movie marathon nights, dressed in pjs while enjoying the company of friends and loved ones
- Collagentex sessions, a deep-infrared light therapy treatment
Simply said, it’s all about embracing the slowdown of this season rather than dwelling on the darkness. I’ve realized that there is a quiet gentleness about this season that is worth treasuring and exploring. Giving myself permission to surrender to the slowdown, and the gentle stillness that this season brings, has been incredibly powerful and restorative.
Slowing down, truly is a gift for all of us that is embedded in our DNA. Day after day, our bodies slow down during times of rest, making space for recovery, reset and renewal. It is an essential part of our health, vitality and well-being and without this biological slow down, we would simply shut down. As we welcome this winter Solstice season, embrace nature’s gift of this extended period of slowing down and attend to that which needs renewing in our life. In this super-fast paced world, we are living in, I think a nice, mindful slowdown is exactly what we all need right now ☺
Give yourself permission to slow it down on all levels this winter season and take time to indulge in those moments. If that means a little more lounging in your robes around the house, longer journal entries, having more power naps, longer baths, taking time to enjoy a meal, longer sex sessions with your partner, or more living room dance parties with your loves, then so be it ☺ Personally, there will be way more kitchen dance parties in our house 😉
Here’s to the slow down ♥