Winter took a while to set in here in Asheville; November and December were unseasonably warm. But this past week saw our first snow and now the cold seems like it is officially here to stay. Winter can be a difficult time for many, but it can also be a time of great healing. The days are longer and we spend more time indoors. Many associate winter with darkness and solitude these do not need to be scary things. Use this time to reflect and turn inward. The cooler months give us a chance to take a break from outward connection and turn our gaze inwards towards the things we may have been avoiding. It is time to connect with yourself and the ones you share a home with.
Now that the holidays are done and the hustle and bustle has passed, you are in the quiet time, the time of long nights and subdued days. We invite you to reconnect with self-care: cooking a nourishing meal, prioritizing meditation, reading for pleasure, enjoying a cup of tea in the early morning before anyone else wakes up. This winter is the time to slow down and savor your health and your life. Self-care is more than a bubble bath.
If you do not take care to support yourself and your habits you may find ourselves indulging in negative behaviors as a way to seek comfort. Be aware of your tendencies and be prepared with supportive alternatives. Think having a book or hobby ready to prevent you from mindlessly scrolling social media or having healthy comfort food recipes made to prevent ordering take-out.
This is the time to prevent bad habits from developing. How can you reconnect with yourself this winter? Self-care starts by knowing yourself. You must know yourself well enough to know what things, actions, or experiences will improve your overall well-being. Below is a list of journal prompts that will inspire you to dig deeper into this winter time and begin the process of self-care and knowing yourself.
- What values do you consider most important in life (honesty, justice, altruism, loyalty, etc.)? How do your actions align with those values?
- What do you value most in relationships (trust, respect, sense of humor, etc.)?
- How do you show compassion to others? How can you extend that same compassion to yourself?
- When do you trust yourself most? When do you find it harder to have faith in your instincts?
- Describe your favorite thing to do when feeling low.
- What three ordinary things bring you the most joy?
- Describe two or three things you do to relax.
- What aspects of your life are you most grateful for?
- How do you show yourself kindness and compassion each day?
- List 10 things that inspire or motivate you.
Journaling is the perfect winter activity. Use your journaling time to reflect and discover. We hope that you are inspired to connect with yourself this winter and create some new self-care routines because of it!