Allowing Winter to Rule

The first full moon of the year brought a blizzard to us here on the shores of Lake Ontario. About 60 centimeters of snow fell—that’s almost two feet–and fierce winds created gorgeous sculptures on roofs and against tree trunks and fences. The drifts were so deep it took us several days to dig out.

The enforced stillness provided the perfect opportunity for me to write my monthly newsletter, yet words did not come. As much as the beauty of the snow-covered landscape inspired me, it also induced a sense of torpor. Productivity was elusive.

My newsletter was *late* because I couldn’t rouse myself to write anything last week. Finally, I turned to my shamanic journey practice for answers. I journeyed on the questions: What should I write about in this newsletter? And, why I am resisting writing anything?

My helping spirits answered the last question first—they showed themselves nestled in their burrows, hibernating in their caves, hunkered down in their nests. It’s winter, was the message, it’s time to gather your energy and rest. Forcing yourself to be productive now is working against the rhythms of nature, so of course nothing valuable comes of it. And as I came out of the journey I got the answer to the first question—write about that!

My helping spirits often tell me what I already know but don’t want to acknowledge. Winter is a time of repose and reflection. It is a good time for imagining the future, but not as good for putting plans into motion.

My reptilian brain knows this, and so does my body, but my personality’s drive toward accomplishment is strong and my cultural conditioning frowns on inactivity. My helping spirits know this about me, and in a kind and loving way they remind me that there’s no reason to push to meet some arbitrary schedule I decided to impose on myself.

I hope you are not forcing yourself to do more than you must. I hope you are resting sweetly on these long nights. And I hope you are planning to cultivate something wonderful as the season progresses.

If you would like to learn shamanic journeying, I offer regular classes–my next introductory class is March 5-6, 2022. I also offer one-on-one instruction and coaching. For other shamanic offerings, please see my Events page.

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