For years I’ve been preaching to patients and students that they need to chill out and relax around this time of year. The ones that listen, really thrive.
Why is that?
The holidays were traditionally about pulling people out of a funk. In the Western tradition, peoples of the Northern hemisphere would hunker down after the fall harvest and dig their heels in for a long, cold winter. There wasn’t much to do (except make babies) so people would feel cooped up with cabin fever by late November or so. The holidays were a way to get people out of their depression and out with others- some stimulation please…
Today we live in an overstimulated world. There is no lack of information, connections, phone calls, texts, or work for us in the Winter. In traditional agrarian societies, when the harvest was over, you’d have to chop some wood and fetch some water here and there, but by and large, you were chilling out most of the winter. When’s the last time you chilled out?
We stumble through our years and keep fighting on and then have to drag ourselves to one holiday party after another- fighting lines and crowds at the mall trying to buy gifts for our loved ones. Does it sound exhausting? Well it should. How can we thrive through 2014 when we have not let ourselves properly close out 2013? We do this every year- losing Vitality, enthusiasm, and sleep each go-around.
So here’s the fix-
TODAY is the Winter Solstice. Today is the shortest day of the year…the darkest day. This is when the days start getting longer into the next cycle and giving us more light to carry us into a solid 2014. What are your goals for next year? Lose weight? Make more money? Start a family? Retire? You can’t do it without energy.
It is time to catch your breath. Hunker down and count your blessings today. Maybe take a salt bath. A nap? Sure- maybe a couple. Make this winter solstice weekend about being lazy and giving your body what it needs. I promise you, the health benefits are great but the psychological ones are even better.
Share this with the people in your life that NEED to hear this today and please…take some down time. We’re all so crazy busy nowadays that we forget to breath, check in, relax, and restore our energy when we’re supposed to. The bears hibernate. We can learn a lot from nature. Listen to your own inner nature and see what you feel like doing right now…I’m going for a nap