December 1, 2015

The Dark Time of the Year

This post is for those of you in the northern hemisphere, the further north the better.  We are in the last 6 weeks or so of the year when the days are getting shorter until the Winter Solstice.   For some of you who live in the far northern latitudes, this can be a real problem.   SAD or Seasonal Affective Disorder can cause depressive symptoms in some people to the extent that they need to seek some sort of remedy such as special lighting or supplements.  Suicide rates and death rates in general go up this time of year, too. 

There can also be the urge to hibernate and just hunker down in solitude for a while, which can generate its own set of issues, especially for those who celebrate holidays this time of year.  For most of us in the United States, this includes Thanksgiving, Christmas, Hanukkah, Kwanzaa, New Year’s Eve and any other holiday that I may have overlooked.  I have often thought about how nice it must be to celebrate Christmas on the beach in Australia, instead of in the deep freeze of the northern US or Canada. 

Now, this may not be your experience depending on your basic temperament, so I can only describe what happened to me in the hopes that it will resonate.  For some years leading up to the early 2000’s, I was acutely aware of the let’s say natural rhythm of down time during the shortest days of the year.  I would also call this an organic pattern.  In conflict with this is the synthetic pattern of the celebration of religious holidays during this time.  Along with this goes the excessive commercialism, the pressures of gift giving and the attached expectations, and the sometimes endless rounds of business, personal and family get-togethers. 

As I evolved with my spiritual path, this conflicting pattern became quite uncomfortable for me.  After my divorce around that time and then starting down my shamanic path, I made a conscious choice to follow the organic path at this time of year.  I do not do Christmas at all, and celebrate the Winter Solstice as the start of my New Year.  I also listen to my body’s need to go into semi-hibernation even into January, limiting non essential social activities. 

This may not be the case for others as I know some who thrive with the holiday doings, or feel the need to fulfill the expectations that this season brings, no matter how much their inner guidance may be telling them to tone it down.  What helped me tremendously was coming upon a book entitled “The Highly Sensitive Person” by Elaine Aron.  I finally understood why this time of year had become so difficult over the years.

About 15-20 % of the population is considered to be highly sensitive.  What this means is that you can get over stimulated and over loaded very easily by the world around you.  Then, a whole host of issues can come up involving coping with the overload to feeling guilty that you cannot just barrel through life like many others can to feeling inadequate that you do not want to participate in certain activities in spite of being pressured to do so.   Finally understanding my highly sensitive nature helped me to give myself permission to make and support personal choices and create a lifestyle that aligns with that sensitivity.  Not that I don’t enjoy a bit of craziness from time to time, but I also need private time to recoup.  Living alone and out in the country is very supportive for me, too. 

So I encourage each of you to connect with your guidance and make choices that support your authentic self especially during this time of year.  Prepare for the start of the organic New Year at solstice time.  If you suspect that you are highly sensitive, get the book.  It certainly did explain to me a lot of my reactions to being over stimulated by situations around me that I felt I had no control over.  Now I know of course that I always have control over my reactions, no matter what is going on.  I have choices and so do you.  Become aware of what you need on a deep level.  Your authentic self will be supported during this dark time of the year if you do.    


  1. I am posting an excerpt from an e-mail that I received from a friend today. "I came upon elaine aron and the world of hsp's several years ago. her theories help me make sense of what I thought was an isolated issue of my own. hsp has been an obstacle for me in work and relationships with men. it has never been a problem with my lady friends. I guess we just innately "get it". if I didn't have my job, I would not have to participate in "the season". I don't get bluesy just frustrated with everyone else's frenzy."

  2. I already feel the pressure and i only will be with my husband, my sweet mum who comes over for 1 week and our 4 respective children and 2 grandchildren (1 will be born around Christmas time) comes along for the 2d day of Christmas (26 of december). Not the few people at home but the atmosphere of synthetic world outside is overwelming. I would prefer to stay inside alone from now and the whole month of december and first week of january. So i asked my Deep Self to help me cope with this and at the same time my homeopath for Borax Veneta to get the rest inside my personal organic Cocoon because it helped me too during the Eastern hollidays. I use it wahen i feel the urge instead of the usual dose. There are probably more stuff to cope with our sensibility during those days.

  3. Looks like an interesting book to read. November 29, 1974, the date of my father's suicide; likely his was an HSP personality; albeit, in his generation and with him as well, no doubt, that being even more so a buried or unrecognized or unacknowledged aspect of a person, than today. Perhaps fits personally, as well; certainly more than either of my two brothers ... and with both of our children, now young adults, each have their own unique aspects of high sensitivity ... like the idea that the work suggests it's an organic aspect of personality, to be better understood and worked with ... and not a disorder.

  4. For two years now I don't celebrate christmas in the way that most people do on this planet. I don't celebrate the birth of Jesus (never did), that's just mind matrix programming, or do christmas shopping till I drop ;) (terrible the believe and consume industry!). I do celebrate our Souls, our Essence and the Essence of Mother Earth and Father Sun, the real key players. My deeper (higher) self let's me know not to worry and keep on focusing on my heart core essence as I do daily and ground with the core of Mother Earth, this really helps me navigate through the matrix show that's been playing out all around the world and now also the IS show in Europe and the media. Since I connect to my Essence, I can deal a lot easier with being highly sensitive, it does not get to me in a overwelming way anymore. I also removed the chakras, that's also really helpful. As you say Carla, we are in control of our emotions and we are taking back our control and break through the matrix programming and not get stuck in the drama of it or the drama of others.

  5. Hi Carla...may I suggest the book Quiet as well...phenomenal! It's helped my clients a great deal to reframe their sensitive natures. Happy end of 2015 and all the juiciness that the dark holds!