Spring has sprung in our lovely Northern Hemisphere, bringing a rush of energy, racing rivers, windy days, lush green and blooming bulbs.
When the dark and cold of winter is replaced with the wild and exciting breath of spring, we often feel the call to shake off winter’s mantle and take the leap into spring. And maybe your rhythm is just that, but what if it’s not?
Spring is a transitional season, and transitions take time. They call for titration, a slow, undulating back and forth between the inner, quiet space of winter and the rush of spring. Some of us experience a counterintuitive depression at this time, how strange to feel heavy hearts when all of nature is waking up! Some of us feel anxiety, as if we should be exploding into the world, diving into opportunities, launching creative or career endeavors, gobbling up every moment of sunshine, but we’re just not there yet.
What if we feel both the delightful call of new spring energy, but simultaneously the echo of slow, dark winter inside ourselves?
Well, the good news is we get to have both.
Transitions require extra care, extra time, extra attention. “Every transition begins with an ending and ends with a beginning. In between endings and beginning is a discomfiting neutral zone that most people would rather avoid, but is essential for personal growth.” Kim Schneiderman
Yes, it would be awfully fun to dive into spring, leaving the tenderness we may feel behind, but no matter where we go, there we are. So what is possible for us, and our personal growth and evolution, if we bring ourselves with us through this transition? If we sit in the in-between with the uncomfortable feelings that tend to poke their heads out when we’re least expecting it? We can use this season to grow a part of ourselves. Because some transitions aren’t wanted or expected. With spring we get to practice so we have some familiar with our own particular flavors and needs.
“Transitions are part and parcel of life, in which nothing ever stands still or remains the same. To learn to navigate transitions therefore is to learn to navigate life itself.” Alex Lickerman
One recipe for working with transitions is self-tending or self-care. Not the pampering, manicure, round of golf, get a massage kind of self-care, though those are all lovely. The true self-care of listening deeply to what we need in any given moment, and responding. Showing up for ourselves with attentiveness and compassion.
Here a few scenarios that may arise for you...
What if as you watch the world soak up the sun and dive into spring, there is anxiety in your belly, butterflies in your chest, and a small voice inside you longing to get back in bed and hide? You could have a little conversation with yourself. “Ahhh, yes, anxiety. Fear. Hello. Welcome. I am here with you.” This may be accompanied by a hand on your heart or belly, and some slow soothing breaths. The simple act of feeling yourself, listening, and responding, is a soothing balm for harder emotions. From this place of self tending, everything can flow more easily.
Maybe friends are throwing weekend bbq’s back to back and though you feel the social pressure of spring, you crave quiet time. And the small part of you may wonder if it’s ok to honor that, or if you’ll be left out or left behind, or worse, judged and criticized. Again, here’s a beautiful moment to sit in this in-between space, and see what’s there. If you take the time and space you crave, can you be with the gift of following your own rhythm, and the tenderness of fearful emotions? Can you resist the push to move faster or do more than you are ready for, and be in the awkwardness of being with you as you are are? The more we honor how we feel, and trust our own wisdom, the more comfortable with transitions. Again, it’s giving ourselves permission to bloom into spring in our own unique way.
Those are just a few ways to navigate spring by following our own pace, listening to the feelings and voices that arise within, and being true to who we are. You may find that when you listen to yourself and take your time, summer may find you ready to go, aligned with yourself and the season, and eager to play!
At the Strength in Motion wellness community, we believe in a mind-body and soul approach towards finding and sustaining balance. We feel honored to be on your path in some way and are here to support you in living to your greatest potential. Click here to find out more information about who we are and how we may be a support to you.