An invitation into stillness
Posted on December 30 2022
We’ve shifted from the darkest nights of fall, into winter
We are near the end of the Winter Holidays—just a few more days until the New Year is here. Many people are looking back, looking forward and pondering resolutions- More vegetables? More exercise? Drink less alcohol? Drink more water? Lose weight? Save money?
The lists spiral endlessly.
But when we look around, we see bare trees, leaves on the ground, brown lawns, snow and ice. Colors come only from brightly colored seeds of Holly and Bittersweet… and Christmas lights. Above ground, all trees and plants are dormant.
Under the earth, everything is very much alive, waiting.
The cold and dark should remind us also, to slow down, go deep inside, connect with our source of life and rest.
During the next month, instead of tackling a new year’s resolution, try this:
Spend some time thinking about you, and your life.
Ask yourself big questions, not necessarily to answer them, only to ask and think about them.
Am I happy?
What do I really need?
How do I want to live?
Who needs my help?
How should I spend my time?
What is important to me?
What do I regret?
Who are the important people in my life?
For the next few days try these:
Turn off the TVs and your devices.
Take naps. Go to bed earlier and sleep in.
Sit quietly, wrapped in a blanket, or by a fire. Look out a window and watch snow fall and the rain. Listen to the wind, or the stillness. Listen to your furnace cycle off and on. Listen to your house creak, cars driving by and your neighbors coming and going. Listen to your children in the background. Invite them to snuggle in next to you, or not.
Breathe slowly and evenly. Listen to your breath. Place your hand on your heart, (or your neck) and feel your heart beat.
Walk slowly, stretch slowly, and lift weight—anything heavy for you—move slowly and with purpose.
Dress warmly and go outside. Feel the air on your face. Hear the wind and the sounds around you. Breathe in the cold air—slowly and through a scarf or your coat—if it’s too cold. Notice the smells outside. Look up at the sky, day or night.
This week is a reminder for slowing down your pace and observing.
We will come back to our New Year’s resolutions, just not yet. Join me next week for next steps in stillness.