Winter, the Water Element and Fear

'In Winter, I plot and plan....'  Henry Rollins

Winter is dominated by the Water element and the emotion of Water is fear. Although fear isn’t something anyone wants to feel on a regular basis, it can be translated to vigilance and/or preparedness. Winter requires a lot of vigilance and preparedness. You want to know before a big snowstorm that you have a shovel, good snow boots, an ice scraper, etc. Dressing to go outside is akin to putting on a spacesuit. Yesterday I asked someone how wet it was outside so I would know if I should put on my waterproof boots or my Uggs (my Uggs would’ve been soaked). The last thing you want when the weather is 10 degrees outside is to go without your gloves or hat. You literally might freeze to death. On a snow day, you want to know you have food in the cupboard and that you paid the gas bill. You want a strong back so you can carry the salt. Vigilance and preparedness are a healthy form of fear. This fear will save your life.

Winter and preparedness can also translate to end of life issues. It’s an ideal time to contemplate issues of death and dying and preparation for retirement. This is the time of year to learn about sustainability and longevity in all things. Am I prepared for the Winter of my own life? Am I nurturing my long term relationships to last? What do I need to do to improve communication with my loved ones?  Am I living for today or is there a plan set in place to care for myself in the future? Is my diet and habits going to assist in keeping me alive and healthy, or are they a nail or two in the coffin?  This time of year ironically, despite it being the coldest, darkest time of year is about planning for longevity. The day to day investments in nurturing all aspects of our life (in our health, our loved ones, our community, our work) will pay off in the end.

Lisa Meyerson, L.Ac

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