How Does Your Garden Grow? - Winter
There is a beauty to be found in the earth's changing seasons. And there is a grace in honouring our own cycles of life whether it is 24 hour cycle, a season, a year or a life time.
On the weather forecast this morning the weatherman said that the Met Office uses the 1st day of a month to designate each seasonal change so December 1st is the 'official' start to the season of winter rather than the equinox on the 21/22 for December.
In any case as we move into the early part of winter we start to light logs fireplaces, wrap up warmer in clothes and hunker down, perhaps enjoy a glass of mulled wine. Who knows we may yet have a white Christmas!
The seasons are a wonderful metaphor to draw upon for ourselves or with our clients. Each season brings changes. Because everything changes, including us, it is important to pay attention to where we are right now, take some inspiration and learning that is all around us in Nature.
The smell, touch, feel and energy of a season offers us a way to walk in the world and draw upon the flavours of a season to inspire our conversations, inside us and with others.
Winter energy is about:
- Hope over despair - when we have to hold on even when we don't know what will happen next.
- Asking the questions that need to be asked and sitting in a still quiet space not hurrying the answer.
Winter may show us a landscape that has shed its green mantle baring its branches to the sparse light and shorter days. Make no mistake things are still going on. Below the soil roots in winter have time to rest and replenish before the rising sap of Spring. Young trees are planted in winter to give roots time to establish themselves. Every late Autumn I put bulbs in good prepared soil to rest for winter months before breaking the surface with bud and flower when they will need light, sun and water to grow.
We too can honour some of the qualities that are emblematic of winter. Winter is about a balancing of resources and conserving them as well. It is about a looser hold on drive and ambition to allow space and some ease in the process of not doing and not knowing. After great acts of courage we need a period of time to resource ourselves.
When we don't take time to honour this quiet time, whatever that means for you, we exhaust ourselves. In constant motion we lose balance. In a garden, or on the land the soil needs time to rest too.
Some qualities associated with winter:
- Setting limits
- Capacity to persevere and be patient
- A spiritual soulful time
- Wisdom that comes when we still and listen for it
Here some WINTER questions that can be good for ourselves and also for our clients:
- What seeds of possibility are currently germinating in your workplace?
- What are the sources of your power and courage? Do you know how to call them forth?
- What beauty can you see around you that is in the shape and structure of what is essential to you in your life?
- What do you know now down in the bones of your wisest Self about what needs to incubate over the season?
Start a journal or a meditation practice to capture what arises in winter reflection.
Take a winter garden walk to admire the bare beauty, the early, still winter, snow drops telling us it was worth the wait. Hope over adversity. Or to choose to go outside and walk the question that allows you to touch on your own deeper wisdom.
One of my favourites is Anglesey Abbey a National Trust garden open all year with an easy path and is resplendent in beauty even in January www.nationaltrust.org.uk/anglesey-abbey-gardens-and-lode-mill