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If you fancy giving meditation a go, now is the time. You can sample different techniques such as counting the breath or using visual aids - sort of like a story book - these are often used in led meditation classes. I have loved hearing about people's methods over the years such as imagining your thoughts are in bubbles and each time they come into your mind popping them with a pin! Or imagining there are clouds floating on by and taking your thoughts away with them and allowing the mind to be still. Obviously the aim is to have no thoughts at all - a still quiet mind - but that takes practice and so find the best way that works for you. I like to imagine I'm in an empty train station and the thoughts are like trains whooshing past me leaving me sitting there with nothing but the breath. 

The season of winter leads nicely on from autumn where you practise your pranayama skills which are a perfect (or if you're like me - essential) pre-meditation tool. I'm also a huge fan of walking meditation or simply being in nature and being mindful of all that's going on around me. I also love the sound of water, and the rain, which is this season's element. It helps me find stillness. The whole theme of winter is quietly making your way along in life and observing what's going on, no judgement, but instead quietly gathering your thoughts as you ebb & flow.

In your physical yoga practice focus on moving smoothly from one posture to another building on repetition and working on gentle back-bending to stimulate the meridian lines for this time of year for the kidney & gallbladder.

Consider that in the natural world, animals put on weight in winter as their bodies attempt to keep warm and store fats, especially around the kidneys and middle areas of the body. Eat plenty of healthy vegetables and wrap up cosy and warm.  If you feel like you wish to get fitter then spring is the perfect time to do it when there is more energy in the air and more light in the day.

As the light fades as early as the afternoon some days it's a great time to catch up on much needed sleep. Increasing your sleep time is not only restorative but completely natural so take this opportunity to snuggle down into a sleepy slumber and wait for the springtime with its heightened energies and more light. Take this opportunity with grace and find stillness in the body and mind to reflect on your life and restore what's needed for the seasons coming.

  • Time of year: December, January, February, March

  • Begins: 21st December

  • Element: Water

  • Linked organs: Kidneys & Bladder

  • Energy: Stillness and silence

  • Nature: Restorative, reflective, rejuvenation

  • Focus: Ebb & Flow

  • Our asana practice: Flow


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