Which Spiritual Season Are You In?
With every changing season, I've come to a deeper understanding of the importance that cycles play in our lives and soul's work. Nature is constantly changing, which can have a huge impact on our energy, emotions, creativity, and inspiration. Each month, the moon moves through its eight phases, and as the wheel of the year turns, we journey through the four seasons. For those of us who menstruate, we experience the monthly cycle within our bodies, too. All of this means that cyclic living is encoded within our cells.
Then there are the spiritual or inner seasons that we move through. These are the phases that we weather and embody within, the journeys we take inside ourselves. From the outside, it may not look like much is happening, but on the inside, deep transformation is taking place. Just like the seasons of the natural world, each inner season has its own sacred gifts and challenges, too.
In my own life – both personally and creatively – I’ve come to understand how helpful it can be to know which season I'm in so that I can surrender to it and trust the timing of my life.
Spiritual Spring and Summer
The spiritual seasons of spring and summer are typically seen as having more masculine energy. This is the energy that inspires us to show up in the world, manifest and achieve. We also see this in nature as life force energy rises and trees shoot up, flowers blossom and fruit ripens. When we're in an inner spring or summer, this is the energy that's moving through us.
Creatively, spring is a time for awakening and new beginnings. After months of darkness, the sun comes out, and nature, along with fresh ideas, start to sprout with life. I often feel like this is when the year really begins. We're alive with a sense of purpose and possibility. We might start a new creative passion project, breathe new energy into an existing project, or prepare to birth something into the world.
A mantra for spiritual spring: I open my heart to new possibilities.
Summer is a time with more freedom, energy and space for creating. We get out of our regular routines and our days stretch out like the ocean. We might travel or take time off, spend more time outdoors with our feet on the grass or hands in the soil, and less time online. Everything seems lighter, we feel more confident, and it's a time when we, along with nature, bloom beautifully and courageously.
A mantra for spiritual summer: I bring light with me wherever I go.
This energy can be wonderfully productive and it's during these phases that we can find great fulfilment in stepping out of our creative cave, bringing the things we've been dreaming of into physical being and sharing our soul gifts and creations with the world.
For those of us that menstruate, we can also tap into and embody this energy for a few days every month. This is the follicular (inner spring) and ovulation (inner summer) phase of our monthly cycle.
Self-care practices for this time: walks in nature, gardening , socialising, energising breathwork, vinyasa flow yoga, conversations, travelling, essential oils like rose, jasmine, wild orange or lemon.
Spiritual Autumn and Winter
The spiritual seasons of autumn and winter guide us into a much more introspective energy, which is also more feminine. Just as we retreat into the warmth and safety of our homes, our inner autumn and winter invite us to retreat deeply into ourselves, and journey back into our own consciousness. Like the hush that happens when snow has fallen, we surrender to the peace and stillness, trusting that spring will come again.
Creatively, autumn is a time of things coming together. There's less distraction and more focus, so we can let go and move deeper into our soul's work, exploring our dharma - our reason why, our purpose. As the air gets clearer, so do our minds. It's a time of improving and completion before we settle in to the dark and quiet of winter, where many of us are low on energy.
A mantra for spiritual autumn: I let go of anything that no longer serves me.
Winter is a time of rest, renewal and reflection, of hibernating and holding your creations close to your heart, away from the frostiness of other people's criticism or judgement. Besides reflecting on our creative work, it can be a good season to plant the seeds for the year ahead.
An mantra for spiritual winter: I honour my body with rest and nourishment.
This energy can be wonderfully nourishing and it's during these phases that we can find clarity, insight and deep replenishment, preparing us for the seasons to come.
During menstruation, this is the luteal (inner autumn) and menstruation (inner winter) phase of our monthly cycle.
Self-care practices for this time: walks in nature bundled up in your favourite sweater, reading, writing, yoga nidra, soothing breathwork, meditation, restorative or yin yoga, essential oils such as cinnamon, frankincense, bergamot, or peppermint.
We're not supposed to bloom all year round
It's not unusual for our spiritual season to feel like a stark contrast to the season of nature we're currently in, for it to last longer (sometimes for a few months or years), or to experience different spiritual seasons in different areas of our lives.
Knowing the spiritual season we're in can help us avoid the pressure of the expectations we put on ourselves, especially in a society that is so obsessed with growth. We may be conditioned to try to be in our inner spring and summer constantly - always creating, achieving and producing. But this isn't useful or sustainable.
We're not supposed to bloom all year round and reminding myself of this has supported me so much because it means that I'm not constantly putting pressure on myself to be out in the world at all times. I can trust the spiritual season I'm in.
This reminds me of the growth cycle of a rose. From the fertile darkness of the seed in the soil, to the bud signalling the potential of the rose's becoming, to the soft petals unfurling into full bloom. Each stage is needed, and then the process begins again as the rose throws her petals to the ground.
It helps me remember that there's a sacred timing to things.
Resisting or trying to control this natural state of change usually leads to struggle later on, whether that's feeling out of alignment or disconnected from nature, burning out, missing out on life, or like we're always ‘producing’ rather than truly ‘creating’.
Personally, I'm just emerging from a long spiritual winter. It was an anxious and uncomfortable time as I compared myself to everyone that was busy in the 'doing', and felt the fear of 'falling behind'. I wanted to push through it. But it was only when I stopped trying to rush the process, and allowed myself to surrender to the magic and mystery of the unknown, that I was able to receive the gifts of rest, healing, and nourishment that my soul so deeply craved. It felt like I was reclaiming my feminine nature.
Similarly, if we try to hold onto our favourite season for too long, we'll miss the magic of the other seasons.
For me, as an introvert, that's autumn. I could happily live in an eternal season of earthy, golden colours, knits and socks, cosy nights at home with a cup of hot chocolate, a book, and pumpkin spice candles. But I'm also aware that if I stayed there, I'd miss out on the promises of spring, the freedom of summer, and the replenishment of winter.
Each spiritual season blesses us with its own gifts (and challenges), and together, they guide our soul's work, creativity, and growth. The calmer, slower seasons nourish us for the ones where we're ready to show up and share our creations. Honouring them all can help us find more harmony, balance and flow, accept our own rhythms, and learn to trust the timing of our lives.
I suspect that this is because as humans - we are nature, too.
For Your Journal
Which spiritual season are you in right now?
How can you embrace it and trust the timing of your life?
What is your soul yearning for in this particular season?
If the change of the seasons is calling you to deepen into and reflect on your soul's purpose - like the first page of a fresh notebook in back-to-school season or the energy of a brand new year, I'd love to support you. You can learn more about soul purpose coaching with me here.
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