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Monday, January 30, 2023

Shake off Winter's Doldrums with Imbolc: Embracing the Light and Energy of the Upcoming Spring (with New Seasonal Journal Prompts)

Imbolc, also known as Brigid's Day, is the midway point between the Winter Solstice and the Spring Equinox, when we welcome the return of light and the coming of spring. It begins the evening of February 1st and concludes the evening of February 2nd. 

The observance of Imbolc, (or St. Brigid's Day for Christians) is a lovely time to mentally transition from the darkness and indolence of deep winter to an energy of renewal and light. 

Here are some ideas for incorporating the spirit of Imbolc into your everyday, for when you're ready to shake off those winter doldrums.

1. Clean and declutter your home. Imbolc is a time of renewal and new beginnings, making it the perfect time to do a deep clean and declutter of your home. This will not only help clear out the old to make way for the new, but it will also create peaceful and harmonious energy in your home, hearth, and spirit.

2. Light candles. Imbolc is a time of returning light, so lighting candles is a simple way to welcome more light into your home. Consider using white or yellow candles to symbolize the return of the sun or choose candles in colors that align with your intentions for the season.

Enjoy a traditional candle-lit, Imbolc-inspired meal, like a hearty stew made with root vegetables such as potatoes, carrots, and turnip, which symbolize the emergence of new growth and renewal. Serve your stew with a side of crusty bread to represent the hearth and home and finish with warm, spiced apple or pear crisp to represent the return of the sun and the coming spring. 

3. Reflect on your goals and intentions. It's still winter and winter is a time of rest and reset; however, at Imbolc, you can begin to think about what you want to create or grow in the coming months. Take some time to think about your goals and intentions for the year ahead, and envision a plan for setting them into motion.  

4. Celebrate the natural world. Imbolc marks the gradual awakening of the natural world, the first signs of spring. Take a walk, observe the changes you see, and document those changes with photos, mental notes, or journaling as a way to connect with the season and the natural world. 

5. Practice self-care. Imbolc is a time of renewal and rejuvenation, so take this opportunity to practice self-care and nourish your mind, body, and spirit; whatever that looks like for you. 

Do you journal? Here are some Imbolc-themed prompts for you to consider.  

1. Think about the themes of Imbolc, such as new beginnings and rebirth. How do you want to grow and change in the coming year? What are your hopes and dreams for the future?

2. Consider the symbolism of the goddess (and Saint) Brigid and what she represents. Brigid is the goddess of fire, poetry and healing and Saint Brigid, the patron saint of poets, midwives, newborns, and smith crafts. How can you tap into her energy of creativity, inspiration, and healing in your own life? What kind of work or projects do you want to undertake in the coming year?

3. Take stock of your relationships and connections. Who are the people in your life who support and uplift you? How can you strengthen those connections and build new ones?

4. Think about the element of fire and how it relates to Imbolc. How can you use the energy of fire to ignite your passions, creativity, and motivation? What steps can you take to bring more fire and vitality into your life?

5. Consider the idea of balance and how it relates to your own life. Are there areas of your life where you feel out of balance? How can you bring more balance and harmony into your life?

Incorporating the energy of Imbolc into your everyday life can be a meaningful and fulfilling way to celebrate a season of renewal and new beginnings. Whether you reflect on the past year, set intentions for the future, or focus on relationships and balance, there are many ways to align yourself with the natural rhythms of the world around you. 

Imbolc is a time of transition, a time to honor the goddess Brigid and her energy of creativity, inspiration and healing. It is a time to take a deep breath and let go of what no longer serves you and to welcome in new beginnings. 

By taking the time to reflect and make intentional choices, you can make the most of the Imbolc season with renewed energy and peace of mind.

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