Some people dread winter with its cold weather, long dark nights, and the downcast mood these elements often induce.
But my guest would say it's possible to befriend winter, and truly enjoy the rhythms and opportunities that are unique to this season.
Micah Mortali is the founder of the Kripalu School of Mindful Outdoor Leadership and an instructor and retreat leader who uses the teaching of ancestral skills to help people develop greater mindfulness and connection with nature. Today on the show, Micah explains why we should consider winter "the night of the year" and how befriending the season involves aligning yourself with its call toward rest and reflection. We first discuss exploring the outdoor world during winter and how learning survival skills like shelter building and animal tracking can help you spend more time in nature, restore your sense of well-being, and simply feel more alive. In the second half of our conversation, we talk about how to improve your interior life during winter, both in the literal sense of making your house more cozy and in the metaphorical sense of turning inward. Micah explains why you should spend one night a week pretending you live off the grid, embrace the power of firelight, and may want to wait until March to make your New Year's resolutions. We end our conversation with why you might want to read The Road this winter.Resources Related to the Episode
- Micah's previous appearance on the AoM podcast: Episode #739: Rewild Your Life
- Rewilding: Meditations, Practices, and Skills for Awakening in Nature by Micah Mortali
- AoM Podcast #157: Primitive Pursuits & Winter Survival
- AoM Article: How to Make Pine Needle Tea
- AoM Article: How to Track Animals — A Primer on Identifying Footprints
- Tracking and the Art of Seeing by Paul Rezendes
- Tom Brown's Science and Art of Tracking by Tom Brown Jr.
- AoM Podcast #566: How to Have a Hyggely Christmas and a More Memorable New Year
- AoM Article: 8 Things That Can Help You Get More Hygge This Winter
- "The Forgotten Medieval Habit of 'Two Sleeps'"
- "Can't Get to Sleep? A Wilderness Weekend Can Help" (Write-up on CU sleep study)
- WoodWick Candles that crackle when lit
- AoM Article: Carry the Fire
- The Road by Cormac McCarthy
- AoM Podcast #760: Cormac McCarthy, The Road, and Carrying the Fire