With the first day of Spring fast approaching, we’ve been considering ways to move from one season to the next with grace and thoughtful intention. While the ancient Chinese understood very well the importance of harmonizing themselves with the rhythm and flow of the seasons, in modern times we are often too busy or overwhelmed to even notice the season change until after it’s well underway.
This year, we invite you to practice the art of letting go of each season, and welcoming each new season by incorporating renewed rituals. Read on for our ideas on how to bid farewell to winter and say hello to spring.
As we near the end of our winter months, we are simultaneously at the beginning of our calendar year. This means we are often setting new intentions and expecting big energy during a time that is actually meant to be restorative and peaceful.
As a result, we may be feeling frustrated if we’re struggling to move forward with our new plans for the year. This is one of the ways that we ignore the impact of our seasons. When the days are short, and sunlight is limited, our bodies yearn for rest, quiet, and stillness. We are primed to look inward, and reflect - and this is not only perfectly acceptable, but necessary. We haven’t failed - we’ve just gotten ahead of ourselves.
Before we can release the winter season, we must first embrace it for what it is. Allow yourself the additional rest, whether that be getting to bed earlier, sleeping in, or squeezing in a mid-day nap. Indulge in larger, comforting meals, like warm stews and hearty soups. Choose joy over progress. A novel rather than the latest self development read. A walk in the brisk air, instead of your usual fitness routine. Ditch the shoulds and focus on what feels good.
Resist the urge to have your whole year figured out and planned. Light a cozy candle like Wildwoods, and take time to journal, brainstorm, chat with friends, and get specific about your goals for the year. What if I could do this differently? What if it could be easy? What I really want to do is...
Embrace the slow, sedentary energy of late winter, allowing yourself to curl up with the what, why, and how - and leave the doing for a little later.
By late March, we begin to feel an upward shift in energy as the weather gets warmer and the days get longer. There is a renewed sense of hope in the air and a pep in our step during this transitional period. As nature blooms around us, we too are inspired to bloom, grow, and evolve.
Woodlot Candles were created for this specific purpose - to spark transformation. But when it comes to transformation, we often think more about the outcome than the transformation period itself - which takes time. Spring is about starting. It’s about creating habits to carry us through the year ahead, that set the stage for growth to occur.
“The day you plant the seed is not the day you eat the fruit.”
- Fabienne Fredrickson
Waking Up Earlier
As the sun rises earlier and stays up later, we get to do the same. Waking up with the sun is a sure way to align your body’s rhythms with that of the earth’s. Even so, getting up earlier can present as a challenge, and while you may be aiming for a early morning yoga practice, or something else a little more ambitious later in the season, remember that your body may require as much time as the seasons themselves to progress, adjust, and change. Even the sun only rises a few minutes earlier each day. Try setting your alarm just five minutes earlier each day,
and if you’re unable to to get outside right away to bask in the early morning sunlight, introduce a small amount of natural light by igniting our Recharge Candle. Peppermint and Rosemary will fend off early morning sleepiness by gently stimulating your senses, leaving you feeling refreshed and clear-headed at the start of your day.
Spring is a great time to seek out inspiration. There is beauty and colour popping out at us everywhere and this can evoke expansion of the mind and spirit - which is needed for transformation. But while we’re feeling more energized and motivated, for most of us, life is still busy, and It can be difficult to let the worries of everyday life fall away for long enough to let inspiration bloom. A great time to drop into that space is after you have had a chance to wind down from the day. While we often suggest the Flora Candle for late night sleep rituals, another way to utilize the calming scent of lavender and bergamot is to incorporate an earlier in the evening wind down practice that leaves space for a passion project or something you’ve been meaning to work on or explore. Make a habit of lighting Flora as soon as you arrive home or finish your work day. Commit to just 30 minutes of self expression time before you carry on with the rest of your evening - whether that be reading, journaling, crafting or whatever is the thing that you most want to do, but never get to do. Strike a match and give breath to all of the ideas that are waiting to bloom.
With much of the world being shut down and all of us spending so much time inside, the warmer weather is sending us a long overdue invitation to get outside. For most, getting outside has meant a walk around the neighbourhood, a mask, and a whole lot of hand sanitizer, but in order to connect with nature, we need to be able to breathe in fresh air, touch the earth’s soil, and experience the relative quiet that only the secluded woods can offer. The Japanese practice of shinrin yoku or “forest bathing” is known to boost immunity and reduce stress hormones - two things we all could benefit greatly from, now more than ever. To try it, find a space in nature, either in the woods, or near the sea, and take your shoes off so that your bare feet come into direct contact with the earth - literally grounding yourself. On days when we are still stuck at home, we can still conjure a feeling of wellbeing by igniting an woodsy scent like Cascadia. Cedar soothes the soul, while fir and exotic patchouli invigorate the body and mind. Light Cascadia, and get down on the floor, either seated or in the savasana pose, and allow the scent to transport you to your favorite spot in nature. This at-home grounding ritual can keep you feeling steady as your spring progresses through various peaks and valleys.
Have you practiced seasonal attunement in the past? What rituals are you planning for your spring? We love to hear from you! So please reach out to us by DMing us on Instagram (@woodlot) or emailing us at firstname.lastname@example.org anytime to share your thoughts with us and let us know what you’d like to see from us in the near future.
All Images included are by Britney Gill (@brit_gill)