Happy Winter Solstice! Yes, it may baffle some of you to see so many people celebrating the first day of winter. Take in the fact that it means so much more than just the cold, snow and icy roads. It's a glorious time of darkness. A time where we are asked to slow down, turn inward and reflect. Reflect on all that has been to decide between what no longer serves us and what we wish to bring along.
Slowing down may be one of the toughest achievements we encounter living in this fast paced society. Know that slowing down does not always mean the pace of things. In reality, there will be busy segments of our lives. Recognize that slowing down can simply consist of being present. When doing any task participate completely, resisting the urge to multitask. Be fully present.
Over the last couple months, even more so with holiday chaos, I’ve adopted a simple exercise to remind myself to mindfully be present. No matter what I’m doing, when I find myself distracted by my to-do list, worries, or random thoughts, I inevitably start to hurry the task at hand. My movements, breath and heart naturally speed up. Once I’m aware of this happening I pause. I pause, rediscover my breath and silently repeat “slow down” or “I’m not in a hurry.” I cannot tell you how much this, paired with a new dedicated daily meditation practice has changed my life.
At one point, however, we will all need to slow the pace of things to a halt and be still. If we do not voluntarily do so the universe will be forced to step in and make us. This shows up as illness, injury and dis-ease, better know as disease. How do we avoid self-destructing? By naturally practicing self-care. Some may think self-care is synonymous with selfish. Be selfish anyway and remind yourself that you can not give from an empty cup. That the wellspring of your heart needs to be filled with self-care, self-compassion and self-love in order to share these gifts with the external world. This is the light within all of us and it is desperately begging for us to hold space for not only others but ourselves. This light is praying for us to breathe life into it like oxygen to a flame. Pause. Be still. Breathe.
So carve some time out of today to pause, reflect with non-judgement and be still. Moving forward, apply this commitment every day to make sure you are aligned with your highest self.
The divine light in me honors the divine light in you.