Winter Rituals | By Ange Stopperan

Last Updated: December 21, 2018By

Originally published in the Winter + Spring 2018 issue. 

Winter has arrived — whether you’re an enthusiast who is welcoming in your favorite season or you are sensitive to the colder months and begin to hibernate in your cave dreaming of summer. Rituals are very important all times of the year, but especially in the winter months. These are times when our body calls for us to slow down, eat warmer foods, look inward, reflect on the past year, reset and embrace moments of solitude.

This is the time of year for new beginnings, connecting to our first chakra “Muladhara,” our root chakra, which reminds us to ground and connect to the earth. Our root chakra is our foundation; when we are grounded in our foundation we are able to open our hearts and explore our soul’s desires. Here are some ideas on how to ground during the winter months.

  • Purchase a candle for Winter Solstice (December 21st) and light this candle each morning throughout the winter months. Each time you light this candle repeat the mantra “I am grounded.”
  • Build a fire.
  • Go for a walk.
  • Place your hands beneath the snow to feel the earth.
  • Sit in the sunshine for 10 minutes.
  • Drink earthy warm drinks like golden milk, ginger tea, tulsi, chamomile, grated ginger plus cinnamon and honey.
  • Nourish your body with homemade soups made from food like yams, leeks, winter squash, potatoes, cooked spinach, mushrooms (recipe featured below).
  • Yoga postures like the Surya Namaskaras A, B, C, Warrior 1 and 2, Child’s Pose, Forward Bends, Supta Baddha Konasana (place one hand on your heart and one hand on your belly; feel the earth underneath you, imagine the earth is holding you up and supporting your body physically and energetically).
  • Mantras I am grounded, I am rooted, I am safe and secure.
  • Pranayama like Nadi Shodhana, also known as Alternate Nostril Breathing, which benefits our bodies by infusing our bodies with oxygen, reduces stress and anxiety, and calms the nervous system.

Rituals For The Winter Enthusiast

Enrich in this time of year.

Take moments to slow down.

Watch the snow fall.

Journal and reflect.

Walk slowly through the snow.

Nourish your body with warm soups and tea.

Morning meditation.

Light a candle.


Make friends with those who are sensitive to winter and encourage them to come out and play.

Rituals For Those Sensitive to Winter

Embrace the experience.

Get outside and try a winter sport like snowshoeing.

Winter campfire.

Sit near the fireplace.

Invest in warm socks and blankets.

Nourish your body with warm soups and tea.

Find movement.

Watch the sunrise.

Take warm baths.

5 big breaths of fresh cold air first thing in the morning.

Make friends with winter enthusiast and invite them in for tea.


Winter Squash Soup

2 T Ghee

5 cups cubed peeled butternut squash

2 cups cubed peeled russet potato

1 tsp. Kosher salt

½ pepper

2 cups sliced leek

4 cups veggie broth

1 cup of coconut milk

Melt ghee in a large dutch oven over medium heat. Add squash, potato, salt and pepper; saute 5 minutes. Add sliced leeks; saute. Stir in broth, bring to a boil. Reduce heat, and simmer for 20 minutes until potato is tender.

Use a blender (tip: remove center piece to blender to allow steam to escape, place a towel over the center hole of the lid). Blend until smooth. Add back into the dutch oven, place on low heat.  Add in coconut milk, stir, cover and keep warm.

Photo by Ali Almquist.

Along with her role as a CO YOGA + Life ambassador, Ange Stopperan, E-RYT 500, is a yoga teacher, mindfulness and business coach, writer, co-owner of LC Yoga in Loveland, Colorado, and lead teacher in LC Yoga’s 200-hour Yoga Teacher Training. Ange leads the Northern Colorado Ram Dass fellowship which speaks to mindfulness topics and lessons from Ram Dass. She is passionate about teaching her students how to connect to Yoga off the mat by incorporating rituals into their daily life. Ange enjoys hanging out with her family, traveling and getting into nature as much as possible.  

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