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The Energies of Winter: Lifestyle, Movement, & Food

The light is returning.

At the Winter Solstice, represented as The Void on InnerSpark’s Wheel of The Mother, despite the fact that it’s the darkest (and coldest) time it’ll be all year, we’re welcoming the return of the light once more.  This is the Wheel of the Year’s “New Moon” and a time for planting seeds in the darkness, the void, the place of no-thing from which all things manifest. 

Aligning with Nature, seasonal and cosmic flow is the most profound tool we have for wholeness, fulfillment, growth, and more; it’s how we were meant to live! It’s how we heal Feminine Shame.

Winter brings The Void and The Cosmic Child archetypes. Learn more about InnerSpark’s Wheel of The Mother, the eight archetypal energies that make up your inner wisdom council!

This is the energy of winter.

This time invites us into deep rest, rejuvenation, receiving, and listening. From the stillness and silence, we’re able to reorient ourselves towards what matters most. This ensures our efforts in the times to come will be fruitful. It can be thought of as the steps even before tending the soil. This is the time to receive the vision and restore our energy. By envisioning the metaphorical garden, our energy can be more focused when it’s time to plant and act.

In late winter, the time of The Cosmic Child archetype, we can think of tiny baby seeds deep beneath the surface slowly beginning to crack open as their cellular intelligence and divine spark take over in preparation for manifesting their essence within.

Invitation: Winter Solstice Ritual & Reflections

As the light returns at Solstice, what are you sacrificing to it? On this, the darkest of the dark, what do you notice?

Fire is fed by death. Living plants don’t burn as well as dead, dry ones. Death feeds on light. Light feeds on death. The ashes of what was, turn to fertilizer for the new. At this time, let what needs to die, die. Let that death nourish your light.

Feed the fire with death and know that the new growth fuels the death to feed the light all over again in a neverending cycle. How extraordinary? Feed the light with death.

In the days surrounding Solstice, take time to honor the return of the light by holding a fire ceremony. Do this in the imaginal or in a safe place to build an actual fire. Identify what needs to die and feed the light. See the fire grow with the kindling of this death.

You may write it down and burn the paper, of course, however really focus on the subtlest parts of yourself to tune into the energy transference taking place. This is you sacrificing to feed the flames of your life force. This is you participating in the alchemy that is life. Allow the death to undergo an energy transference to nourish your light. Feed the light with death and be fed by the light to nourish your death.

Ways to Support Yourself and
Honor the Medicine of Winter

Lifestyle: 

Even though the light is returning, it’s freaking cold and dark.  We’re in a reflective, introspective space.  Hibernating and rejuvenating are key for this time.  The more deeply you allow yourself to rest and restore, the better equipped your entire system will be in the coming year and seasons.  This is the time for replenishing our vital life force.  Do not miss it. 

In ages past, Yule (now Christmas) was a time for gathering and merriment before hunkering down for the long, dark winter ahead.  As late winter or Imbolc (now Groundhog Day) approaches, we can begin to feel the thaw taking place.  The days are growing a little longer and hope is returning.  Honor the stillness and the depth available here.

  • Take time to do nothing but be. Receive the wisdom and guidance from within yourself. Ask your dreams for messages, allow visions to come to you, allow yourself to get clear on what’s really important. If plans or intentions come through, wonderful! Take note, however, don’t feel the need to act on anything just yet. What do you deeply desire?  What needs to be done to allow the space for it to come true? Dream, receive, and prepare.
  • Prioritizing adequate rest (notice the desire to sleep a bit more during this time and honor it) is essential. What helps you feel restored and rested? Do that.
  • Continue choosing more restorative movement over higher intensity sessions in early winter. Then, as Imbolc (late winter) approaches, begin to tune in and feel your body’s desires begin to change. Appetites may reduce and the desire to move more will begin returning as we make our way closer to spring.
  • Maintaining regular meal times supports blood sugar balance, energy levels, and digestion, and of course, all of this soothes the nervous system.
  • Using guided meditation resources can help to whisk you into that juicy place of The Void where you’re able to receive the wisdom within. Check out the resources I’ve created from free guided meditations and journeys, to this hands-on self-healing video, which is a fast, effective, and pleasurable way to calm the system and deepen into stillness. Check out this guided video I made for you!
  • Syncing with the sun as much as possible (i.e. really winding down at sunset and engaging in relaxing, nourishing activities from then until bedtime and then being up before sunrise.

Movement:

While resting and rejuvenating are the focus of this time, it’s also crucial to avoid becoming stagnant. It’s more challenging for healthy circulation of blood and lymph to take place in the cold. Gentle, regular movement can alleviate this.

  • Walking is such an underrated form of movement and is truly the kindest and most effective.  It’s been shown to support the body through reducing stress hormones, lowering the risk of osteoporosis, and doing it outdoors has even more amazing benefits! Walking a little bit after meals is also wonderful to support digestion.
  • Yoga and rebounding are ideal right now to prevent stagnation in the muscles and lymphatic system.
  • Dancing is fantastic, also!  Many experience depressed and funky moods in winter and I know of no better way to quicken the blood, raise energy, and lift my spirits than putting on some music and just dancing it out.

Food:

Simply, eat seasonally all the time and you can’t go wrong.  To say Nature is “smart” is such an understatement that it’s almost disrespectful.  We have all that we need to support our bodies and what they are undergoing as we mirror the Earth at any given moment.  Period.

What’s available to you right now?  Much of winter’s menu is similar to fall’s – root veggies like pumpkin, sweet potatoes, butternut squash, parsnips, turnips, carrots, beets, etc.; deep, mineral-rich, life-giving greens like collards, arugula, and kale; Brussels sprouts, apples, pears, cranberries, grapes, pomegranates, cauliflower, and more!  Mmmmm!

To check what’s in season locally for you, this is a great resource.  Focus on deeply pigmented produce right now to support the blood and circulation.

Incorporating herbs that are gently warming like ginger, cinnamon, turmeric, and black pepper can support the immune system and circulation. And of course, there are so many plant essences to support you right now such as Wild Potato, Butterfly Pea, The Void, and Cosmic Child.  This is a good time to connect to your internal, liminal realms.

Need to kick a bug?
Try my favorite recipe:

1.5c Warm water

Small piece of fresh ginger and turmeric or about ½t powdered versions of each

1T Raw organic honey

pinch of black pepper

Put in a blender and drink! 

The rhythms of Nature are here to guide us, and as we follow Her lead, we have the opportunity to experience vitality, wholeness, and joy beyond our wildest dreams. Blessings to you in this restorative time!

The InnerSpark Method is a profound inward journey of self-discovery and shame-busting for deep-feeling womxn.

Ready to get to the root of your burnout, ditch people-pleasing, self-sabotage, and anxiety, and discover your true, shame-free nature so you can confidently thrive in body, mind, and spirit?

Sweet Soul, it’s time to live from your InnerSpark.

More Seasonal Living + Earth Wisdom:

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