Softening in to Surrender


We’ve just clocked in to winter here in Australia – although I think Brisbane has been left off the memo. We’re still mooching around in shorts and singlets here, so it’s going to be a pretty rude shock when we’re plunged in to chilliness after our seemingly endless summer.

To be honest though, I think for the first time ever, this tropical baby is ready for winter. Or more precisely, what winter spiritually represents. After many months of outward-focus, expansion, and all things yang, including buying my first home, it’s now the season for focusing inwards. Pulling back in to my yin nature. Contraction. Which is something I’ve been feeling called to for a couple of months now. So the seasons are beginning to come in to alignment with where I’m at.

Softening in to surrender

I’ve alluded previously to my reticence at embracing simply ‘being’ and not ‘doing’ so much. I struggle to feel worthy of another day on this earth if I haven’t accomplished something, or created something, or been of service, or added value. I’ve previously hung a lot of my self worth on the hill’s hoist of achievement, and I don’t think I’m alone in this.

But at this juncture in my life, I feel both intuitively and overtly pushed towards a softening, a surrendering and an opening to drop in to beautiful darkness, in to my deepest feminine nature. And the season of winter is the perfect time to do this.

I’m a huge advocate of respecting cycles – nature’s rhythms, our own rhythms, all work to cycles in the name of balance and long-term holistic health for all. Being go-go-go all the time tends to see us staring down the barrel of burnout. Being perpetually contracted can see us spiral in to lethargy. When we disrespect cycles, we do so at our own peril.

As part of my journey in to my eighth chakra (since having it activated in January) I’m knee deep in soul-level work. And it’s… uncomfortable. Not bad, just a bit prickly. The eighth chakra is all about soul purpose, and it’s a time where a heck of a lot gets shaken up around the place, both internally and externally. As we ascend energetically, a lot of shifting and adjusting goes on. Sometimes it can feel a bit like being randomly elbowed in the face, but more so it’s the kind of discomfort you know you just need to move through – like the hours before a big speech, or when you’re about to do something that makes you feel vulnerable. Valuable discomfort.

After a sublime kinesiology session the other day, I unearthed my guiding words for this forthcoming winter o’mine:

  •  Presence
  •  Surrender
  •  Let Go
  •  Allow
  •  Trust

Pretty potent words, hey?

The internal transformation occurring within me is significant and needs to be respected – given as much time and space as it needs. The advice I’m getting from my intuition, as well as wise sisters of mine who are also on this soul purpose journey is: do not rush or try to buck it off like a rodeo bronco (as tempting as it may be). The guidance is to instead, anchor deeply within.

For me this is looking like:

  • More gentle yoga, less interwebz surfing.
  • Connecting within and upwards every morning, before connecting outwards.
  • Connecting with loved ones and really being there, in my full present self, not multitasking at the same time.
  • Less outward expression, more inner attention.
  • Less running away, more sitting with my shit.
  • Less doing, more being.
  • Radiating in my feminine nature (thanks, Susana).
  • Trusting there’s a greater wisdom beyond my limited capacity, and surrendering my self-appointed job as project manager of the Universe.

I feel that my purpose right now is simply to be the vessel of presence. A watchful observer of the wonderment occurring at what sometimes feels like slow motion, and at other times warp speed. Allowing myself to be the crucible for significant inner transformation that I can literally feel swirling within me.

Our society (including yours truly) glorifies the overtly joyous, the doing, and the achieving. We abscond at the first sign of discomfort or the ebbing of our moods. But I think it’s just as important to glorify and acknowledge the pensive times, the being, the contraction and the sitting still.

While it’s by no means an easy ride, I feel so blessed to have the luxury of time and space to get to know myself so intimately. It’s a truly deep and soulfully resonant joy journeying to discover and completely embody (in the truest sense) my holistic self in this world.

Now if Brisbane would just allow itself to soften and surrender in to winter…

How do you react when you feel called to contract or just be? Guilty? Does it make you want to run for miles? I’d love to hear from you in the comments below.

Photo source


  • Sophia McEvoy

    Beautiful Carly!
    I feel the same way. I’ve been feeling a pull to just be. To stop searching for myself in books and blogs and courses etc, and just surrender to where I am now. To stop treating this whole personal development journey like there is a destination I am trying to get to as quickly as possible, and start letting go a little.
    I wish Winter would get a wriggle on as well! My mind, body and spirit are craving it!!

    • Carly

      Thanks, Sophia! Lovely to hear you’re resonating with the pull to retreat. You’re so spot on about there not being a destination with this work. It’s a process in constant motion 🙂 xx

  • Kylie

    Beautiful post Carly! I am feeling you! This, especially, made me pause, hold my breath, say YES: “I feel that my purpose right now is simply to be the vessel of presence.”

  • Susana Frioni

    Beautiful post babe! (and thanks for the link back love!)

    Radiance is a new word that has emerged for me and it’s all about opening, surrendering, leaning back, trusting, shining and being. It’s feeling really good so far.

    And here’s to honouring our cycles…our own personal ebb and flow…and the ebb and flow of the magic around us.

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