June is the midpoint of the year, and it affords us the opportunity to course-correct if need be, now that we can see the vivid expression of the seeds we have sown in the earth, as well as those that have been planted in our hearts and souls.
Often, June reveals to us what continues to be deeply meaningful for us in our work and family life. The beginning of summer mirrors back to us what is fulfilling, renewing, and nurturing to us—and what is not. What is not tolerated at this time is any situation in our work or relationships that has become a “should,” where we feel duty-bound. Whatever is not aligned or congruent with our integrity and heart is forced to be released at the midpoint of the year, or reassessed in its meaning to us.
Summer is my favorite time of the year. Another school year is over and the pace of life slows for couple of months to allow me to catch up with myself and those that I love. With less rigid time constraints and fewer obligations, I relish the natural unfolding of each day with more time to simply rest and be. Spending more time outdoors, connecting deeply with the elemental world, reading books, making art, being with my children in a state of relaxation rather than rush and languishing in a longer yoga practice are some of the rituals that I most savor.
Also, being that the year is half over, it is the perfect time to take pause and check in with where I am in relationship to the intentions that I set at the beginning of the year in my January dream time. Midyear offers the opportunity to come back into balance in whatever way(s) we have drifted off course. To identify the “shoulds” that are responsible for pulling us away from our true north and to let them go.
Fire is the symbol most often associated with summer. In its destructive form it allows us to release what no longer serves and in its constructive form it ignites us with our passion, realigning our heartfelt desire with positive action. The power of heat to transform is called “tapas” in yoga and it comes from the Sanskrit root tap which means “to burn.” It refers to that alchemical ability of fire to transform the lead of our ego identity with a higher vibrational form of energy more in alignment with our soul. Energetically this inner fire relates to the third chakra and is experienced as a “fire in the belly” that is often used to describe the qualities of will power, inner strength and disciplined determination that are indicative of inspired action. What is the state of your inner fire?
Coming back into balance at this time of year invites us to look at where we may be in need of more magnetic, feminine (yin) energy or dynamic, masculine (yang). Shifting our lifestyle habits to accommodate our needs can be a little easier during this time of year when taking vacations and time off are possible.
Take some time this month to do your own midyear reflection in order to help you take stock of what’s working and what isn’t. Here are a few questions to consider at this juncture:
*Where am I now? What is my current life like?
*What have been the highlights of the first half of this year? What celebrations or accomplishments can I name?
*What challenge(s) am I encountering? What “shoulds” can I drop?
*What is the growth opportunity that my challenge(s) are offering? (i.e. am I being called to greater balance, letting go, focus, faith, authenticity, self-compassion, trust, etc.)
*What is one practical thing I can do to step more fully into the growth? (i.e. create definitive work times and honor the boundaries when I am home, set up work-outs with a friend, meditate on my blessings for 5min. a day, or read a book that addresses my challenge, etc.)
*Review your heartfelt desire or intentions for the year. Do they still resonate or do you want to revise/update?
*Imagine yourself six months from now; at the end of this year-2020. What have you experienced or accomplished that you are most proud of?
***As a short addendum to this post (originally created in 2016), I'd like to acknowledge the tremendous, unprecedented challenges that this year has brought for everyone on the planet. Perhaps the highest intention you can make at this time is to attend simply and well for what is closest to you each day in order to maintain your energy. Adopt the "less is more" philosophy. I believe this isn't a time to push or force ourselves in ANY way but to do our best to balance our personal self-care needs with our greater service to others. I encourage you to make some time to relax and enjoy any opportunities to do the things that you love with the people that are most special to you.
May this summer bless you with a renewed hope and emerging vision for what's possible.
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