I like the idea of varying rhythms and rituals, adjusting habits and goals based on some type of seasonality, whether predicated on literal climactic seasons or internal seasons: different moments in our lives, different ages, different career-stages, etc.
This piece (which was inspired by a book
I enjoyed) addresses this topic through the lens of alternative means of agriculture as practiced by early Americans, which contrasts which agriculture as practiced across Europe (and then exported pretty much everywhere else) in that natural resources were not depleted, making the whole exercise less extractive and more balanced.
This approach required seasonal shifts in focus and outcomes, however, which in turn allowed the ecosystems in question to sustain and regenerate in between harvests.
Intertwined with this method of acquiring food, many of the societies utilizing this approach also shifted stance and mindset within their communities from season to season, based on what made sense in the environment in which they found themselves (availability of game and water, but also the temperature and weather patterns influenced these cycles).
The author of this essay links this type of seasonality to personal behavior and focus, and how one’s career can pivot and shift and recalibrate based on environmental or internal factors, while still moving toward an eventual destination.
Sometimes we’ll be more social and engaged and immersed in our communities.
Sometimes we’ll be hermits, retreating for long periods of deep work and focus, not as externally engaged because of our inward-facing priorities.
Sometimes we’ll make more than we consume, sometimes we’ll consume more than we make in order to get a sense of what’s happening around us.
And these sorts of tweaks and recalibrations are okay, because they’re different facets of the same bundle of pursuits. Allowing ourselves to make these adjustments is healthy, not something we should perceive as an indication we’re losing our focus or strength or capacity.
Doing precisely the same thing all the time is not necessarily the best way to get where we want to be, in other words, because it’s not a balanced, sustainable approach to making those outcomes manifest.