This year, Winter Solstice falls on Sunday, December 21st.
What’s so special about this day? Due to the axial tilt of our planet, this astronomical phenomenon marks the shortest day and longest night of the year. That means the sun will appear at its lowest point in the sky marking the beginning of the winter season.
What does this mean to you? First of all, winter – with its freezing temperatures and snowy appearances – is officially here. But what’s even clearer: it’s a time for new beginnings. We’ve read that long ago, people considered this day an important one because they believed if the sun were to keep sinking lower and lower soon all would be dark and life would end. On this date the sun would climb back into the sky and therefore was a time of new beginnings.
It’s also a symbolic time to (literally) reflect on where you were this same time last year. Last year we were reaping the benefits of a Love Grace cleanse, and two years ago, on December 21st, many people thought the world was ending because of predictions from the Mayan calendar. Taking a moment to acknowledge where you were last year helps to encourage more gratitude and growth.
How do you celebrate the darkest day of the year?
This is the perfect time to stay home and snuggle in with a good read and restore. The best way to embrace the start of winter is by slowing down and finding relaxation.
A one day juice cleanse is a great way to reset the body and the mind. The body gets a break from all the toxins we consume. And if you feel like your mind feels a little foggy, cleansing will also help you to feel clear and bright in a time of ultimate darkness.
Salute the sun:
Practice your sun salutations in celebration of the solstice. A few rounds of Surya Namaskara A and B on your yoga mat will go a long way into the winter months ahead. With each upward facing dog breathe in a new mantra that resonates with you like “all is well” or “from darkness to light” to refer to when things may be feeling down or dark and with each down dog exhale every negative thought that no longer suits your highest good.
Set an intention:
Write down your purpose or share it with someone. This can be something you’re trying to work on this year, it can be a phrase that helps you feel more positive or even a statement that will allow you to find calm in the midst of madness. With setting an intention on this specific day, every day following will seek to move closer to your goal as more sunlight arises in your life.
Let it go:
Write down places you fell short this past year, things that still feel incomplete or places you may have not been the best version of yourself. You can keep this in a journal to reflect on, or say a quick prayer and burn it. Just by writing down your reflections shows you acknowledge them and can move forward. On another piece of paper write down what you are grateful for and what you are committed to. This note of gratitude should be placed somewhere safe and sacred – refer to it frequently so you are more able to let go of your own self-judgement and doubt.