Each of us have our own personal milestones, moments that tell us to pause, reflect, take stock. Maybe it’s anniversary or the changing of a season. Sometimes it’s just a familiar place or a smell that triggers the senses and reminds us of how far we have come, how much has changed; and how much more change awaits.
As a culture we recognize these milestones as holidays. In the spring we have celebrations of renewal, and in autumn we celebrate what has passed on. In the dark, short days of winter we welcome the new year, and we get to ponder both the past and the future, the year behind us and the year ahead. It’s a great time to make commitments to your best practices, your best self, to root into your personal healing journey.
But let’s be honest: 2017 was a hard year. A hard year to go through and a hard year to move on from. Some called it a year of change, while others called it a year of resistance. Even those who tried hardest to avoid the political clashes and natural disasters felt the stress seep into their lives. Gallup polling shows that Americans’ sense of well-being significantly declined in 2017 (this is especially true for women and people of color).
Many of us are frazzled, stuck in a cycle of anxiety, frozen by fear. What can we do with this difficult year?
We cannot promise that the next year will feel more secure, or less contentious. We cannot control how other people will act in the coming year. But we can embrace difficulty for its opportunities. As the ever-wise Maya Angelou puts it, “You may encounter many defeats, but you must not be defeated. In fact, it may be necessary to encounter the defeats, so you can know who you are, what you can rise from, how you can still come out of it.”
How will you rise in the year to come?
At Holiday, we know that every rising raft must have a balanced core, and every river surge begins as a gentle flow. Balance and flow. No matter how big the rapids get, how wild the adventures turns, we base everything we do in that balance and flow.
How will you balance your busy life in the coming year? What will be the pace of your flow? We have a series of trips that are designed to help you answer these exact questions.
Holiday’s Balance and Flow trips are centered around wellness practices, spiritual renewal, and connection to the land. They are about rooting into the sandy beach with yoga, rooting into your body with fitness exercises and nutritious meals, and rooting into your own soul with mindfulness meditation.
Each of our six specialty trips give you structure to learn new skills and practices, but also freedom to wander and relax; the time to clear your mind each night and stare at the famously starry skies of Southern Utah. The time to greet the life-giving sun each morning as it rises over red rock canyons.
This is not about punitive New Year’s resolutions. It’s not about being more successful or losing weight necessarily. Think of these trips as existential upkeep, vitamins for the soul, medicinal tinctures for the heart. This is about taking the time to heal from the past and plan for the future in a way that’s aligned with your truest self.
2017 was tough, but it was also just an arbitrary segment of time on the Gregorian calendar. We all have deeper milestones within us, a more profound balance and a more unique flow. It’s when we find these currents that we can truly rise.
Easton Smith is a Local Wasatch Front resident and writer. He spends his time community organizing, rock-climbing and playin’ some mean banjo. For more writing from Easton, check out his organizing collective’s blog “Brine Waves” here or stay tuned for future loggings in River Currents.