As our lives begin to take on some kind of normal once more, it's a great time to think back and plan ahead.
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We can learn so much from the seasons. Unfortunately, most of us have become so disconneted with nature that the only seasons we tend to take notice of are holiday seasons. We are vaguely aware of the changes in the weather, we notice that it's warmer or colder, but it doesn't really affect what we do.
I love the Autumn. I know it's a very English word but I just can't bring myself to use "Fall", so apologies to all my readers from across the pond. I have to admit, though, that "Fall" does kind of capture a sense of the season. The year is noticeably changing, the days are shorter, the mornings are cold and crisp, the leaves are turning and falling.
A Sense of Seasons
Winter is a time of rest. The Spring comes in all it's glory, bursting forth in colour and life. The Summer sizzles and glows with growth and goodness.
The Autumn is the final stage of this cyclic process--the gathering of the harvest, the "bringing into the barn" of all the good fruit. The final flourish before the land prepares once more for the long sleep of Winter.
So for me it's a great time for reflection, a time to ask questions, review, and take stock.
Based on experience I know that Christmas will arrive before I'm ready for it and the New Year will begin without my permission. The final weeks of the year can be fraught with busyness and bustle as we prepare for Winter, and we all want our year to finish well.
The seasons of nature can teach us a lot about ourselves. We tend to think of life as continually getting better, or at least that's our hope. But we, like the world, go through times and seasons. Our lives are cyclical much more than linear.
A great question to ask is: What season do I find myself in right now?
Spring - Am I in a time of new birth? Life is everywhere, there is an abundance of ideas, a never-ending flow of energy and creativity, and nothing can dampen our optimism and hope for a brighter future. This is a time of planting, taking a long-term view of things - work now, harvest later.
Summer - Am I in a time of plenty? We begin to see the fruits of our labors. An early harvest brings joy and we have plenty to be thankful for. But there's plenty of work to be done too, weeding out things that have cluttered our lives - too many projects on the go. We also have to make sure we look after ourselves, summer is
Fall - Am I in a time of taking stock? We have gathered the harvest. We have celebrated together, We have stored up for the coming winter and we are content that our year has been a bountiful one. There is a natural winding down. Some things have a natural ending, and we can sense that after work comes rest. We take stock of our progress, setting time aside to think forward.
Winter - Am I in a time of resting? This could be recovering from over-work or a sickness. It could be that we've simply come to a natural end of something - a contract, a project, a relationship. Whatever it may be, we need time to prepare ourselves for new birth, and that comes with the Spring.
Time to look ahead
The world is changing. That shouldn't surpise any of us, but the speed at which changes are happening has caught us all out. We used to think we were all moving forward towards better times. Now we understand more than ever that life goes in cycles.
Wherever you find yourself right now, we can learn from the seasons. Good will come out of your present circumstances, there is a forward momentum, it's just not in quite the same way we imagined. Times of productivity lead to times of rest. Times of rest lead to times of new birth. Times of new birth lead to growth, and so on.
And that's exciting. There's always anticipation in the air. There's always a new phase just round the corner. A new endeavor, with new possibilities. Let's learn make the most of it.