Winter, a time for creativity and introspection
Winter begins on the Cross Quarter point of Samhain or Candlemas
True Winter: the ancient Celts marked Winter at Samhain (or, if you prefer its Christian name, Candlemas). It falls midway between Autumnal Equinox and Winter Solstice.
Samhain or Candlemas just ‘feels’ like winter, maybe not always weather-wise, but spiritually. It’s a good time to incubate our energies and review what the past year has taught us. It’s also a time to prepare what we’ll offer the world next year.
A shift in perspective about this coming winter, the new year and how to mark the seasons…
Practical Reasons to reconsider Winter and the New Year planning cycle
Usually we reserve this work for the middle of winter, which falls close to the end of our Julian calendar year. There’re a few issues with continuing this mainstream tradition.
- The first issue is we end up cramming all three months into a two week period, which is already filled with holiday preparation and celebration.
- The next is, because we’ve just added another burden to our already burgeoning season, we’re overwhelmed.
- Finally we’re bombarded by references to New Year’s resolutions, an idea which usually lacks in follow-through.
In short, we’ve just set up a recipe for self-sabotage, which shouldn’t be news as it happens every year. Unless you’re super organized and disciplined. Kudos if you are! Even so, you’ve still put a lot on your plate at one time and added to your stress levels, simply because you choose to follow an artificially created calendar for planning your new year.
Your new year should work for not against you!
So when is the REAL new year?
If we choose to follow this natural calendar, the new year starts not on January 1st, not even at Vernal Equinox, but at the Celts’ reckoning of true Spring, the Cross Quarter point of Imbolc (or Groundhog Day if you prefer the American term).
That’s three months from now, a nice block of time to devote to planning, starting and executing a project. This particular three-month block is so important is that it holds, within it’s center, the powerful energy of Winter Solstice. So you’re drawing upon that energy from beginning to end.
The Wheel of the Year: a natural quarterly planning cycle
Beginning to use the Wheel of the Year’s Cross Quarter planning now, at Samhain, you’ll be ready for the next Cross Quarter of Spring. It begins at Imbolc (or if you prefer the American version, Groundhog Day) and ending at Beltain (or Whisuntde, the Christian term), with the Vernal Equinox sandwiched in between.
The really powerful time for your next planning cycle is Beltain, which marks the beginning of Summer. The middle of summer is the other powerful Solstice to draw from for important projects. And it ends with Lughnasad (or Lammos, the Christian term).
Lughnasad begins Autumn, the next three-month cycle. The Autumnal Equinox falls in the middle and ending where we are now, at Samhain.
I will work with your on creating these four natural seasons as 90-day blocks in your own calendar. You’ll find this method less daunting than looking at the entire year, And it helps you focus more on each 3-month project plan, or quarterly planning. Contact me if you’d like a clearing/planning session on this (some clients even set up quarterly planning/clearing sessions for each of these natural seasons).
Winter’s a good time for a ‘Treasure Hunt of the Mind’
Speaking of winter projects and creativity, I thought you’d like to listen to this excerpt from one of my Alchemy Masters classes. It’s about the Treasure Hunt of the Mind. You may find it helpful as you ‘incubate’ during the creative period of Winter that we’ve just crossed into.
Even if you already have a plan, there’re things packed into this audio on how to prepare to hunt for more ‘treasure’, which you can use to move that plan forward. Plus, if you have no ideas at this point, yet you’d like to take advantage of this creative period between Samhain to Imbolc, a Treasure Hunt of the Mind just might help you develop one for your plan.