Winter: a quick burst of brilliant daylight, sandwiched in-between dark, cold evenings, long nights and slower-to-wake mornings. The time of sunshine, busy schedules and minds traveling a mile a minute is long gone; in its place, a chapter of quiet has descended. It’s as if Mother Earth presses “pause” and watches all her creatures curl up and rest.
As the climate around us shifts, our bodies and brains do too. We honor this relationship between Mother Earth and us. A slower energy level is more appropriate, along with a focus on staying warm and cozy. To-do lists naturally shorten, and the crackling fire invites us to sit down and take a load off. Finally, it’s time to catch up on that book we’ve been wanting to read, or chat lazily with friends and family. A mug of something hot, or a gigantic pot of soup appeals to our basic needs of warmth and nourishment. We answer the invitation to hunker down and go inwards.
What do you need during this time? The demand for over productivity is replaced by a call to rest and recharge. These moments of enjoyment, playfulness, and “me” time fill our cups and quell our souls. We can be so production oriented; it can take a lot of effort to come down from that nervous high and switch gears. Lean into this season that we’re in, succumbing to the hush of winter. Softer, gentler days allow for breathing, reflecting, and enjoying the spaces we are in. Some of us are artistic, and can use that creative outlet to give color, shape and texture to their experience. Others are musical, creating rich melodies that help move the interior sentiments of their soul to a more harmonious place. Still others find solace in nature, inhaling pristine air deeply and exhaling tension. Whatever your niche is, settle into it. Let the peace come to you.
Reflect, maintaining a sense of curiosity as feelings, memories and questions come up. Process the past few seasons in your own, unique way. Intentional downtime can calm us and help fill our cups, so that we can continue to chase our passions and do what we need to do. There are so many ways to reach our goals and find fulfillment; follow the intuition in your body, and trust that earthy rhythm that guides us through each season.
Ask a Nutritionist:
Guest Writer Gail Kloosterman, BSN/INHC, weighs in on how we can nourish our bodies in winter:
By focusing on providing our systems with easily digestible fuel sources, we can make sure we are not making it more challenging for our bodies to meet the demands of an ever-changing environment. As the weather cools off, prioritize broths, soups, and stews, made with nutrient-dense and diverse sources of protein, carbohydrates, and fat. Reducing cold and raw foods in favor of warm alternatives can help support your energy requirements so your body systems can be more stable and regenerate on a cellular level.
**Special thanks to Gail for sharing her wit and wisdom! You can learn about her one-on-one nutritional consultations at www.NextIngredientConsulting.com