Today is a new moon. It's a great time to set new intentions for the year if you’ve not done so already or to start again if you’ve stumbled. Apparently yesterday (12th January) is the day most people fail at their New Year's resolutions and chuck in the towel. I'm not sure it occurs to many of them that maybe their resolutions were unrealistic in the first place so they had set themselves up for disappointment and that feeling of failure and self loathing.
No longer do I plan to start punishing exercise regimes or try ultra-healthy but ultra-boring diets in January. Instead I set positive intentions and aim to be kind to myself in Winter, to nourish both body and mind to get through what even in an ordinary year can be a bit of a dark and depressing time. Winter is the natural time for us to hibernate so embrace the opportunity to be at home more than usual and rest and restore ready for Spring.
One of the things that has been supporting me so far this month is Gillie Sutherland's fantastic Lighten Up 21 yoga programme. The aim is to complete 21 sessions in 28 days so it doesn't matter if you miss a day or two because you don't feel like it that day or life gets in the way. My goal is yoga five days a week during January to really get in the habit. Her weekday morning sessions are perfect as they fill the half hour from 8-8.30am when I would ordinarily be on the school run (see a positive of lockdown!). I know that six or seven is not achievable for me so I don't set my sights that high. Your goal may be one or two, it is individual to each of us.
Gillie also shared a quiz to find out your spirit animal yesterday and serendipitously I got bear. Symbolic of strength and confidence, standing against adversity, healing, solitude, quiet, rest and grounding all of which sound great right now.
The morning sessions leave me feeling energised and inspired, grounded and ready to take on the day. As today is new moon I will try to do Gillie's hygge (cosy) yoga at 6.30pm this evening. It's all about blankets and candles. She has a Hygge and Happiness workshop coming up too on Saturday 23rd January. And her soma dance is so liberating and joyful you can't help but come away happy.
If you'd like to delve more into your intentions for the year ahead and set some positive intentions for self care during the winter months do consider life coach Caroline Richardson's online Winter Wellbeing course. She is also running a free group on Facebook called Journal Through January providing a daily journal prompt to help you get into the habit of reflecting and downloading your thoughts. It's great to get what is worrying you out of your head and onto paper, it helps bring clarity and its also great to record your gratitudes each day. Find the positives in any situation and cling on to them.
And if you feel like you've failed at something already this January, be kind to yourself, dust yourself off, see if you can adjust your resolution into a positive intention and start again with kindness to yourself. It's OK to be like a bear and hibernate your way through the Winter. See you in the Spring.
Katie is one of the owners of Blackdown Yurts and likes to write about things going on at and around her beautiful glamping site