Nothing says January more than comfort. It’s restoration season and while new “health goals” are at their highest point, so can be depression. As a society we are conditioned to believe this is the time of year we are meant to be productive. Achieve big goals and shooting high. Historically this is a season of rest, slowing down and making food and supplies last. Across the globe these practices were unique. Weather being a defining factor on how essential survival was in the winter months. There are some common themes still woven into modern society such as over spending, gathering more items and indulging in the fall months leading up to the winter solstice. Followed by scarce bank accounts, the trend to shed extra pounds (historically done through lack of supplies and even famine in cold months), as well as the need for extra sleep (also historically utilized to make supplies last longer).

With the hustle and bustle, cheerie gatherings and so on coming to a crashing halt in January I invite you to open your awareness to your body and your mind. Take stock of the feelings, emotions and thoughts that are present. Reflect on what your needs are this next season. Compare and contrast all of your findings to what our ancestors have needed and adopting principles that can be reimagined for your life.

There is a shift in modern society as part of an awakening. People are feeling the need to change traditions, and routines to innovative ways of living. I have experienced this in my own life in overwhelming ways. Schedules not working, work loads feeling offset and a general sense that things aren’t working as they once were. In conversations with my counsellor we often discuss how people “used to” do things in the past and what that could look like or how it could make sense in a new way today. All with the idea in mind that everything can be seasonal and not forever. We can learn alot from the past if we take the time pause, reflect and research.

There were alot of things that didn’t work in the past that we can learn from. Knowing the winter months have traditionally been hard for centuries before us should indicate that we will all feel the challenging effect of it to some degree. With depression rising over the last two decades and especially over the winter months it is something we all need to be aware of. Instead of rushing to create new unattainable goals, reflect on your needs and the needs of your community. Think long term and create some foundations of wellbeing that will see you through any season. Leave reminders for yourself as to what worked and didn’t work that you can get ahead of or change for next year.

Ultimately the ebb and flow of life is normal. When we feel low, stuck or exhausted, know it is changeable with some work. We cannot be well if we aren’t rested, and have our basic needs met. We can be gracious with ourselves, love ourselves and make our wellbeing a priority. All that being said I will leave you with two things:

1- Self care is essential to life. It will look different as we wade through the ebb and flow. Needs will change and connection with our community is one of our best assets. Ask for help if its needed. Live a little Hygge.

2 – I am a foodie and I greatly believe that food is on this planet to be enjoyed, savoured and appreciated. It is also essential to life and often considered the enemy. It brings our communities together from farm to table, it nourishes our brain and necessary organs and of course it can soothe the soul. So here is my most recent recipe discovery for you. Some soul food.

I found this recipe on Pinterest and it is labelled as a heritage recipe. Here is the link.

I chose not to use nutmeg in the dough and I love them with or without the cinnamon. Having them with just sugar on top is yummy when you add a teaspoon of jam when you are ready to eat them!

As always, thanks for reading. I hope you feel connection here and know we are in this journey of life together. Much love, Chantel.

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