A few weeks ago, I woke up before the sun and drove to Nederland High School, where I picked up a shuttle to the Hessie trailhead. I started hiking just after sunrise beneath a canopy of autumn leaves. There was a chill in the air, but it was warm enough for me to break a sweat. The ground beneath my feet reminded me of the yellow brick road.
As I climbed higher, the wind picked up and a mist gradually painted the sky gray. A coating of early morning frost grew into patches of ice. The occasional pocket of snow stretched out over the landscape, turning the yellow trail brown and then white. By the time I reached ~11,000 feet, I was following a single set of footprints in several inches of fresh snow. When those petered out and I began to lose track of the trail, I decided it was time to turn around.
I drove back to Arvada and met my family for lunch on a warm and sunny, summer like day. Three seasons within 6 hours got me thinking about, well, seasons.
I tend to be an all or nothing sort of person. I have, more than once, scolded myself for this. Why can’t I be more moderate? Eat just the one cookie? Establish the ever elusive balance in my life?
I’ll tell you why. That would be way too boring!
Why go for a walk when I can climb mountains? (I mean that both figuratively and quite literally.) Why teach a weekly yoga studio class when I can start my own business? I have the ability to set big, scary goals and the drive to go after them. I don’t want to stamp out that fire.
I have learned a lesson, though. I can’t do it all at once. I still need balance. That’s why, instead of moderation, I choose to practice seasonality. I’ve lived through running seasons and yoga seasons, baby seasons and grieving seasons, writing seasons and working seasons. The list goes on.
Here are a few tips I’ve discovered for making seasonality work:
- You don’t choose the season; the season chooses you. It must come from a deeply rooted place of great meaning and importance. If it comes from somewhere else, it either won’t last or it will feel like a slog.
- Stop pretending you’re going to do all the things. We’re not practicing moderation here, remember? Somethings (plural) have got to give.
- There is never a laundry season.
Most of us are headed into a holiday season. This might not be the best time to write a book or start training for a marathon. But it could be a good time to unload those somethings that no longer serve you. Create the time and space in your life for the season after the holiday season.
What is it you really want for yourself and your life? Go ahead and think big and bold.
I would love to support you during the season that begins in January 2022. That could look like Yoga Therapy, Yoga Nidra, Group Yoga or my new program Starting Running with Yoga. Sign up for a free 20 minute consultation over Zoom, and let’s chat!