Happy New Year! It feels like a fresh start and a new beginning. We’re filled with so much anticipation and like a race horse we’re ready to go off to the races to achieve our goals we carried over from the previous year, vowing that we must achieve them, as well as any resolutions we made for this year. After all it’s a clean slate.
I believe that’s a lot of pressure to put on ourselves and it sets us up for failure.
What if we just focused on taking one day at a time? All we have is the present moment. Each day when the sun rises and we wake up, it’s actually a new beginning. It’s always an opportunity to begin again.
In the Celtic Tree Calendar, a calendar with thirteen lunar divisions named after trees, we’re in the cycle of the Birch until January 20. It’s a time of rebirth and regeneration. During this cycle, we can sit in contemplation, envision our future and make some plans for the year ahead.
The Goddess to connect with is Aphrodite and her message is: balance your male energy with more female energy through self-care.
7 ways to nurture yourself
Connect with Mother Earth. Go for a walk for a minimum of 20 minutes—no music and tune into your thoughts.
Be receptive exercise. Sit in solitude for a minimum of 30 minutes—no music and tune into your thoughts. Light a candle if you wish and use the timer on your smartphone to sit and really listen to your thoughts.
Take a nap. Resting your mind-body-spirit in the middle of the day can lift your mood, make you more alert, and ease stress.
Prepare a hearty soup. Not only is soup delicious, it’s comforting on a cold winter evening. It is also easy to make. If you don’t have a favorite recipe, check out 16 Hearty Soups That Will Fill You Up by Kitchn.
Soak in a bubble bath. Use lavender essential oil to relax any aching muscles and to calm your mind. A bath can also help you sleep better.
Read a book. Snuggle up by the fireplace (if you have one) or wrap yourself with a throw cover and lose yourself in a good story or gain some new knowledge on a topic you’ve always wanted to learn. Reading is extremely relaxing and it expands your horizons and vocabulary.
Express yourself creatively. Spend at least 30 minutes, 3 times a week doing something creative e.g. writing, drawing, painting, singing, dancing etc. Whatever brings you joy! Schedule it in your smartphone and set a reminder. By doing something creative, you’re connecting with your soul, where you focus on solutions, access your inner wisdom, intuition, and shift from being in your head, where the EGO focuses on problems, fears.
I personally changed my yoga practice. I went from Power Yoga, which is more active to Yin yoga, which is a passive practice. Yin yoga has helped me be more in my body, breath more consciously while holding the poses for longer periods and rest my racing thoughts.
Benefits of easing into the new year
It may seem counterintuitive to ease your way into the New Year when everything around us is moving fast. But when we slow down, we connect more deeply to our soul’s calling and we allow the unfolding of a life that is more fulfilling and purposeful.
Our bodies are wise, we just need to honour it by listening. When we slow down, we connect to our body’s natural rhythms and cycles. The more we listen and nurture ourselves, the more we alleviate anxiety and overwhelm because you become grounded in the present moment. You also rejuvenate your mind-body-spirit so that you can take your next action step from an empowered place.
I want to hear from you
Do you make time for self-care and if so, what are ways that you nurture yourself?
Are you resistant to slowing down?