Caring for your W.I.L.D. self

At the beginning of the new seasonal year, I joined a group of women who are dedicated to re-wilding their lives using a loose framework based on the Wheel of the Year.

We have been given two seasonal calendars. One that has already been filled out with various correspondences for the seasons and another that is empty to make our own as we progress on our journey together through the seasons.

The goal is to reconnect and align with the seasonal flow of the year and to learn from the teachings embedded in it. At the same time, we are learning how to provide space for our wild self to thrive and renew itself as we go about our normal, everyday lives.

Here, when we are referring to the wild self we are speaking about that deeper part of ourselves that is whole, inconsistent, loving and diverse. That part of ourselves that we tend to hide from others and that we may feel disconnected from.

Here ‘whole’ isn’t the same as ‘being one with something. This isn’t about superficial unity but about the wholeness that comes when we are aware of the interconnectedness of all the fragments that make us who we are. We contain all these fragments within. We are whole despite what may be happening in our inner and outer lives.

On the inside, we are not one but many and this makes us inconsistent which means that it is not naturally easy for us to fit in with society’s many linear narratives about what our lives should look like. To embrace our wild self is to learn how to work with our natural inconsistencies and not force them to fit in.

Our wild self is loving. I know that We as humans are capable of the most tremendous love and kindness but this is something that needs to be nurtured. I know from experience how easily our emotional selves can be manipulated by media and others. We need to be vigilant to adopt a consistently loving perspective.

Finally, our wild self is naturally diverse and therefore it is something that we need to actively value. Diversity builds healthy communities as well as ecosystems. Diversity also inspires creativity.

In a world that values linear thinking and achieving goals at the expense of everything else, our wild – whole, inconsistent, loving, and diverse – self suffers. It’s up to us to care for it, value it, and give it room to breathe so that we can maintain our overall well-being.

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