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Creating Intentional Containers for Our Lives

Now that we’ve passed over the threshold of darkness into Winter, we see the light slowly but surely returning. Despite this growing light, Winter is still a time of containment and stillness as we grow our potential energy. This is energy that is stored, not actively being used. We fill ourselves up at this time. So I want to explore the concept of a container, because how can you fill yourself without containment? A container is something used to hold or store things in. In this regards I’m speaking spiritually of the container that holds your life, yourself, your needs, and your dreams. Containers are solid structures. They live in the realm of the Earth element, associated with Winter in the Celtic lens of spirituality. Containers are built by putting solid action and support into place; support structures that meet our basic needs in order to help us thrive. In the Sacred Seasons Winter Guidebook I write,

“Earth creates the container for everything else to move in and through. During the winter days we are building. We are building our stores, building and nourishing our bodies, compiling and gathering our energy within. In doing so, we can have enough stores to take action in the spring. This is not unlike the act of building a container, building the bones of something, so that it can be filled. Within this container of Earth, we can feel supported. We can (learn to) trust.” The tricky thing is that while these containers help us create trust in our lives, these containers are also built with trust. By trusting in ourselves to follow through with concrete actions and lifestyle choices that nourish our bodies, creative spirits, mental health, and our emotional selves, we place brick after brick to grow the solid container that holds our lives. So as we sit at the top of a New Year, it may be helpful to ask yourself,

How can I structure my life to care for myself and honor my true needs?

How can I create the container that is my life, that I move through daily, to best support my own thriving? This is a vast and complex question, and one worth contemplating. It’s also something to reflect on in relationship to community care and support as well. The container of our own support structures is in relation to the wider web of community support that we weave ourselves into. And while we’re far from witnessing a healthy model of community care in this country, there is a strong call right now to build this container of trust inside our communities. So as we consider our intentions and desires for this New Year, see if you can expand into a wider view of thinking about the container of your life and how you’d like it to be and feel. With this more expansive foundation of clarity in place, it’s much easier to stick to specific support systems that directly nourish your container. It’s also the greater “why” that you can continue to root back into to inform your actions. And while you consider these questions, keep in mind the Winter season to help bring you into balance.

How can you build your energy and assemble it cohesively right now?

Where can you contain and nourish yourself instead of dispersing or dispelling energy?

Top photo by Patrick Hendry


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