If you’re in the Southern Hemisphere, how have you felt about those Winter Southerly Winds that have been blowing our way this week? I think many would agree, we’re now well and truly settled in for the coldest time of the year with many people anchoring to cozy up next to the fire – if you’re lucky enough to have one.
It’s also the shortest day of the year, as we celebrate the Winter Solstice in which nature reaches its stillest, darkest point and then pivots towards the light to allow a new year of growth and change. Our unique combination of mind, body and energy co-exists with and is interdependent with our environment. It’s no surprise that during Winter our bodies want to sleep more and our digestion and metabolism slow down. This is why we crave well cooked, hot foods such as soups, curries and stews.
The sun symbolises and stimulates energy in all living things. As the sun’s energy is at its lowest, the Winter Solstice encourages us to shed those things that are no longer needed to make room for growth.
The first law of thermodynamics is that energy is neither created nor destroyed, it is merely converted. When we say yes to something, we are committing our energy to it, which naturally means we are taking energy from something else or saying no to something.
Each choice we make is an energy trade-off that we need to make consciously.
What are you creating in your life and work and therefore what trade-offs do you need to make?
The Winter Solstice is a great time to consider what you will “shed” or remove to make room for what you will grow.
If shedding is something that challenges you, yoga is a great tool for grounding your energy allowing you to accept reality and gain the confidence to shed those things in your life and work that no longer serve your thriving.
Yoga is an ancient system to prepare your body, direct your energy and train your mind to connect with your spirit or awareness, that part of you that is beyond time and space. Have you ever caught your mind wandering off topic? That part of you that catches your mind wandering is what I call your awareness.
A key element of the holistic discipline of Yoga is Pranayama, which is the practice of directing energy through breathing. Practitioners learn how to control their breath and use energic locks to contain, release and direct energy. It’s a deep and powerful practice that leads to instant clarity and presence. If you are familiar with yogic breath work, pranayama is a wonderful tool to directly impact your energy.
I don’t believe it was a coincidence that the World Health Organisation chose, 21 June to be International Yoga Day on the same day when, in the northern hemisphere, the sun is at her strongest and in the southern hemisphere, she is at her weakest. It’s a wonderful acknowledgement of energy being a key component of the yoga path.
If you’re in the Southern Hemisphere:
- Take the time to meditate and centre yourself
- Review progress against your goals,
- Set an intention for the next 6 months as if it’s already happened “I am fully present in everything I do”
- Decide what you will stop doing to transform that energy towards your intention
Change happens now, in the present moment.
So, what are 3 things you will stop doing today, that no longer serve you?
Happy Solstice Day and Happy International Yoga Day