Working With the Wisdom of the Seasons
By Carol McClelland

Nature's response to the changing
seasons offers us wisdom about how
we can make changes in our own lives.
These strategies, which have evolved
over the eons, can guide us to the most
effective way to produce the results
we are looking for.

Although our society advocates pushing
forward to get results, nature has
a different way;
a way of working
with each season rather than against it.

-- In Fall the goal is to acknowledge that
it's time to let go of the old to prepare for the

-- In Winter our focus is to retreat
and reflect on what we want in the coming year.

-- In Spring we take action to make our vision reality.

-- In Summer we celebrate our successes.

You can use the wisdom of the seasons when the calendar indicates a particular season
OR when your personal journey takes you through a Season. Let me explain...any time
you make a change in your own life, your journey takes you through several phases
that mirror the seasons.

For instance, if you are in the midst of a career change (or any other big transition), it's
likely you are in Winter. As you wrestle with your options you may feel confused,
lost, and tired. You may feel awkward and uncomfortable in highly social events.
When you don't know who you are or where you are going, socializing questions
like "What do you do?" "What kind of job are you looking for?" set you on edge. If
given the option, you'd much rather take time for yourself right now.


One of the ways animals weather the storms of winter is to burrow in. They slow their
bodily functions and their activity to conserve energy and wait out the cold, wintry

If you are feeling buffeted from the storms of change around you, take some time for
yourself. Set aside some quiet time during the holiday season to take care of
yourself. Although those around you may be encouraging you to participate in
holiday festivities, you may not be in a particularly festive mood. Honor where you
are in your journey. Respect your personal desire to be alone or with close friends this
holiday. This phase won't last forever. When you are clear about your future, you'll be
ready to rejoin the world.


When animals must be out and about during winter, their
coats often change to help them blend into their surroundings.

If you do need to attend social gatherings, you might feel safer using some camouflage
techniques. Rather than drawing attention to yourself and the fact that you aren't sure
where you are headed with your career, find ways to participate in the gathering that
shield you from questions and attention. Offer to help out in the kitchen or to take
care of the fire. Associate with the people you feel comfortable with, those who
understand where you are right now. Do your best to avoid people who make you feel
vulnerable or uneasy.

Staying Safe

Animals that have migrated during the Fall months are now safe in a milder
environment, which allows them to avoid the deepest, darkest storms of winter.

If you can, you may want to consider "migrating" for the holidays! Plan a getaway so
that you are far away from the situations that feel unsafe at the moment. Even a day
outing can do the trick. Although people may react to a change in tradition, you can
choose to explain why you are going away or just let people know your plans. In either
case, plan to go somewhere that feels safe and comfortable to you.

Indigenous people around the world, who are in touch with the natural cycle of the
seasons, take time to pause, reflect, and celebrate during the darkest time of the year.
The focus of their ceremonies is often the return of the light as the Solstice passes.

As you take time for yourself during the next few weeks, consider reflecting on what's
absolutely true for you.

-- What are you passionate about?

-- How do you want to spend your time?

-- What impact would you like to have on those around you
and on the planet?

-- What work environment is best for you?

Don't worry about HOW you are going to achieve these goals. Instead focus on
thinking expansively about you, your passions, and your impact. When you know
where you are going, doors and paths have a way of opening up in ways you
can't anticipate at this moment.

Resist the urge to leap into action right away. Allow your ideas and visions to
incubate, grow and evolve. It's likely you'll notice that your list of ideas weaves
together to create an even larger vision.

About the Author: Green Career Expert, Carol McClelland, PhD, is the author of Your Dream
Career For Dummies and founder/managing editor of Green Career Central. She provides people
with an array of resources, information, and support to help them identify their green niche, find a
green job, or start a green business. Visit
Green Career Central to request a free copy of her
Strategies to Grow Your Green Career report.

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