This year I’ve been living differently.
I’ve been recognising and honouring the cyclic nature of life, and of life as a woman.
I’ve been attentive to the seasons as they change.
I’ve been marking the old Celtic Festivals of the Summer & Winter Solstices, the spring and autumn Equinoxes, Imbolc, Beltane, Lammas and Samhain.
I’ve been watching the cycles of the moon phases.
And I’ve been honouring the cyclic nature of being a woman: the monthly cycle.
And alongside this I’ve been watching and noticing the ebb and flow of my high sensitivity and how it interacts with these cycles.
Not forgetting that cycle which is within us each and every moment: the constant cycle of the inhale – exhale – inhale – exhale…
Living in connection
And what has this brought me?
It’s brought me home.
It’s brought me into touch with Mother Earth and the cycle of the moon, months and seasons.
It’s brought me into touch with my needs and has connected me to my inner landscape.
It’s brought me home to my sensitive nature and to love how I can tune into the subtle energies of the shift in light and energy in nature and the shifts of my energy and focus as they change throughout each month.
It’s a reclaiming. A tuning in. A recalibration.
A reclaiming of my inner power and wisdom – to deeply know what I need to allow myself and give myself to nurture and honour my needs.
Are you in touch with the cyclic nature of life?
The cycles of the seasons
So, let’s look a little deeper, beginning with the energy of the seasons.
Let’s start with Autumn – as that’s the season we’re in as I write.
You only need to look out the window to see what the energy of autumn is about: it’s letting go. As the trees let go of their leaves we can look within and ask ourselves what are ready to let go of? What’s falling away? It could be material possessions we no longer need. It could be habits; ways of being; people even.
Tune into autumn and let go of what you no longer need.
Winter. It’s the death of the old. The trees are bare. The air is cold. The ground is hard. All seems barren.
But look deeper and realize that it’s just that the energies have gone inwards – hibernating, conserving, ready to flourish when the time is right, in spring.
And we can do the same. Snuggle up with a blanket and book. Allow quiet-time. Conserve our energy. Meditate. Look within. Identify what new seeds we wish to nurture ready to grow next spring.
Spring. And now new life springs forth! As daffodils bloom and the first shoots on trees bud, we can tap into this rising energy ourselves and let the seeds of ideas we nurtured over winter now begin to grow.
Summer. The height of the growing season. All is on-show. Energy is high. Tap into abundance and light and life. Choose to do things which bring you joy.
And as Summer turns into Autumn – and as the wheel of the year turns again – take stock of your own personal harvest. What flourished this year? Be grateful. Give yourself credit for what you’ve achieved. Reflect on what could have gone better – what might you do differently next year.
…and so the cycle continues.
The cycle of the moon
And these cycles can also be seen each month – in the phases of the moon.
The Waxing Moon is Spring-like in energy, growing, expansive.
The Full moon is Summer – bright and abundant.
The Waning Moon has autumn-like energies, a falling away and letting go.
And the dark New Moon is winter a time of inner reflection, ready for the cycle to continue.
The monthly female cycle
And there are more cycles to tune into.
The phases of a woman’s menstrual cycle (male readers take note: be aware of these phases to support the women in your life!).
- Days 7-14 are Spring (pre-ovulation) when energy rises.
- Days 14-21 are Summer (ovulation) where we are fertile, abundant, full of life.
- Days 21-28 are Autumn (pre-menstrual) where we are getting ready to let go and clear out (and don’t suffer fools gladly!).
- Days 1-7 are Winter (menstruation) the death of the old as we bleed and release.
And if you don’t menstruate you can still follow these changing energies by tapping into the phases of the moon. They’re all interconnected.
And yes, there are more cycles!
The aspects of the female life cycle – female archetypes (also known as the Triple Goddess, with an added Enchantress/Wise Woman stage) – the over-arching stages of our life but also we go through these each month (and the phases of the moon relate too).
- The Maiden (spring): where we begin to bloom, full of youth and promise and enthusiasm.
- The Mother (summer): where we are creating, full of life (could be children, could be any kind of creativity e.g. for this was becoming a yoga teacher and creating my business and sending my writing out into the world).
- Enchantress / Wise Woman (autumn): We are healers in this stage. We are intuitive. We are connected. We are fully in our power. We are wise and we are wild.
- Crone (winter): We are at the height of our deep, deep wisdom. It is a time to rest. It is a time of endings.
I love this work!
Honouring the cycles
Those of you who come to my yoga classes may have noticed that throughout this year I’ve been referencing the seasons in our practice.
To me, honouring the life cycles is yoga in action. After all, yoga means union. So living in harmony with the cyclic nature of life is a way of coming into union with life.
Tuning into the seasonal shifts of nature is beautiful. We are, after all, part of nature and interdependent with our earth.
Realizing, as a woman, that you are shifting through the seasons every month is deeply empowering.
Knowing that all of life is cyclic liberates us – because we truly realize what goes around comes around.
All is change. This too must pass.