Today marks the official beginning of Winter, and it's the shortest day of the year up here in the Northern Hemisphere. Since June, the darkness has grown each day, urging us to turn in earlier and slow down. There is plenty of darkness left in this season (and wet and cold), but today marks the small pivot toward the light half of the year. Between now and the Summer Solstice on June 21, the Sun's presence will grow each day.
Today the Sun also moves into the zodiac sign of Capricorn, which is symbolized by the sea-goat (half fish, half goat). In the Greek myth surrounding Capricorn, the patriarch of the sea-goat race, Pricus, was appalled when his sea-goat offspring began to spend more and more time on dry land, becoming normal goats. In doing so, they lost their connection to the world of water and its mysteries.
Near my house, there's a large plot where almost a dozen goats live, and their caretakers have constructed all sorts of climbing devices for them to use. Climbing is an instinctual need for these goats, just as it is for their mountaineering cousins.
We share the mountain goat's instinctual desire to climb: to grow, to expand, to get higher and gain a new perspective or new advantage. There's nothing wrong with ambition, and that drive to persevere and accomplish something big is a sacred part of being human.
But if we make the same mistake that Pricus' sea-goat offspring made and lose our connection to our watery and emotional depths, we become ambitious for ambition's sake. We climb one mountain and another and another, but our accomplishments feel empty.
As we transition into the active half of this year and cross the threshold into 2019, I encourage you to consider what is worthy of your sacred ambition. What is worthy of your singular focus and energetic devotion this year? What mountain is so appealing to you at a deep level that your heart whispers or shouts "yes!" when you imagine ascending it? Your mountain could be a new career, a promotion, new education, a better relationship, or anything that deepens your alignment with your soul's purpose.
If you're reading a blog about careers, I know that you have ambition. It may be a dampened flame or a bonfire burning for the wrong reasons, but it's there. The key questions about ambition this time of year are:
"What is no longer worthy of my sacred energy?"
"Can I slow down enough to see where my ambitious energy wants to flow next?" For extra support in this area, check out my latest podcast episode, Why Slowing Down is the Best Thing for Your Career Right Now, on iTunes, Stitcher, and SoundCloud.
"What obstacles need to be removed in order for my drive to be channeled in the right direction?"
If you've ever experienced the joy of working toward a goal that you were on board with at every level of your being, then you know the potential of Capricorn season. May each of us be clear and grounded as we set our sights on our desires for 2019 and begin the work to realize them.
Warm Solstice Blessings,