Winter is a season when nature rests in preparation for high energy new growth of spring. So let’s focus on what rest looks like for you this winter. With the hustle and bustle of the holiday season can make it seem like winter is far from restful, but it can be if you can stop, quiet yourself, and remember this season is not about showing up for what everyone needs from you, but what you need for yourself. If you don’t make time for rest no one is going to make you. The rest YOU take during these winter months will provide for the burst of energy you will need in the spring.
I invite you to find a comfortable seat, light a candle or turn on your diffuser, grab your journal and pen, and reflect on how these ideas of rest can guide you through this winter season.
- Begin by settling into a comfy seat, closing your eyes and bring your breath into your center.
- Exhale completely through your mouth, making a whoosh sound. Close your mouth and inhale quietly through your nose to a mental count of 4. Hold your breath for a count of 7. Exhale completely through your mouth, making a whoosh sound to a count of 8.
- Visualize winter happening around you; watch as the snow fall, see the bear hibernating, the trees bare swaying in the wind.
- How do you rest best?
- Do you rest often enough?
- Author Emily Ley from Grace not Perfection, says you cannot draw from an empty well. If you don’t take time to refill your resources you can’t care for those around you.
- Rest here for a moment meditating on these questions and the thoughts that enter your head. Write down anything that stands out to you or questions you have.
- After a few moments, ask yourself:
- How do I feel about rest?
- Why do I feel this way?
- In Ecclesiastes 3:1-8, the author explains there is a season for everything. Which season do you feel you are in now? You can be in multiple times.
- Meditate on the seasons of life
- As you prepare for the rest that winter offers, consider how society has trained us to believe that rest is equivocal to laziness. Do you feel guilt when you try to rest?
- Meditate on these answers while doing the slow breathing exercise from earlier
- Breathe in for 4 seconds
- Hold your breath for 7 seconds
- S L O W L Y breathe out for 8
- Now, go and do what you can today. Practice gratitude. And do the next right thing.
You can use this meditation as often (or as little) as you’d like this winter to help be more mindful of this restful season, practicing mindfulness and more rest for your physical, mental, and spiritual health.
With nature as your guide you can find rest and calm, God’s creation knows what it needs and what it does not. When we slow down and apply these principles to our lives we can learn and grow through the harshest of seasons.