My winter secret

‘Winter is coming.’ It’s more dramatic when they say that in Game of Thrones, but in case you hadn’t noticed, winter is coming in our world too.

The daylight hours are fewer and the temperature has dropped sharply.

For most of us, it’s harder to get up in the dark mornings, it’s harder to be motivated or creative.

Our animal instincts lean towards a sort of hibernation.

We feel tired much earlier.

Hot drinks and hot meals bring us comfort in the dark months.

But the modern world doesn’t let up with its demands for work and productivity.

At this time of year, we can be hard on ourselves. Our inner voice may accuse us of being lazy and unproductive.

When we visited our daughter in Iceland, I learnt that in summer the sun never goes down, and in the winter it never comes up.

Weeks and months of darkness. How do people live there?

The secret of the extreme Icelandic winter is to listen to your body. Observe the seasons.

Understand that you are not an observer of the changing seasons - you are part of it.

A flower does not push itself to bloom in winter. In winter it slows down and rests.

As I walk through Autumn and observe the changes in nature, as I tune in to the shorter days, I listen to my body.

I’m not expecting the same creativity or the busy days of spring and summer.

(Watch video here)

I embrace the approaching winter and understand that it’s a passing season.

I embrace the winter like an old friend who came to visit.

I often start the day by opening the back door, smelling the cold crisp air, looking at frost that came to decorate the dying vegetation.

Winter brings a cleansing - it’s the start of a renewal.

When the snow comes and covers the world, it’s like a new page in a notebook - waiting for fresh thoughts and ideas.

I embrace the stillness of winter like an inner prayer, preparing for the arrival of a glorious Spring, yet knowing that the days of waiting are just as important.

It’s no surprise that we set our intentions and resolutions for the year ahead in winter.

Winter is a pause, a time to reflect on the past year. A time to take stock, and set new goals.

Winter is coming - embrace it as an old friend who came to visit for a while.