It’s cold here in Oakland as we move through these waning days heading towards the Solstice. It’s dark before I leave the office in the evening, and I find myself wanting to follow our brothers the bears and hibernate.
My garden is put to bed for the winter (although the kale musters on) and there’s nary a bud to be found on my meanders around the lake. The Canada Geese have multiplied as they head south, and the scent of wood fires is often on the wind these chilly nights.
If humans lived with the patterns of the seasons, those of us in the northern hemisphere would be settling in, doing less, gathering by the fire and telling stories. We wouldn’t be rushing to stores or hustling to get that final letter sent out before the deadline.
Many of us lead in contexts that ask us to ignore the natural world and its rhythms – this is a time to get end-of-year appeals, and final grant reports and proposals out the door. Nonetheless, the dark world beckons – it asks us to remember our animal selves – the parts of us that still know and respond to the quiet pull of long dark nights.
I’m going to slow my pace and take some time to catch my breath over the next week or so. Rockwood traditionally closes our offices for a week at the end of the year to honor our collective need to rest and renew. I invite you to join us in whatever way you can. Let’s take a lesson from our marmot sisters and rest a bit – here are some visuals to help.
Happy Solstice. Happy Everything. May your winter season be filled with connection and joy.
And may you find some time for respite in this wonderful dark time.
From my heart to yours.
How will you create time for you and your staff to rest and renew?