Seasonal celebrations are wonderful, and I am preparing for a fantastic one even as I type this. Nonetheless, taking the time to enjoy a beautiful day or a magical month even amidst a busy Thursday is so very rewarding that I decided to brainstorm some simple ways to stay connected to luscious Autumn even during the hectic “everydays”. I share them with you now! Enjoy!
1. Outside Air: Have you ever noticed that each season, indeed each month, has a charge in the air? Crisp fall air feels different than that of other seasons. Take a quick walk, park a little further away than usual when running an errand, or simply open a window, and allow yourself to enjoy breathing the autumn air.
2. Spice it up!: Spices are amazing. Not only do they have healing properties, but they also act as true zingers to the dangers of gustatory monotony transforming meals, snacks, and even beverages into exhilarating celebrations! Because there are spices that have deep connections to autumn, use them liberally! Try a sprinkle of cinnamon on your banana or a dash of nutmeg on your coffee. Other fun autumn spices include cloves, allspice, and ginger. Enjoy, and notice how fast your sense of taste can awaken your seasonal spirit!
3. Reflection: Stop. Just for a minute. Consider what autumn represents. It is the climax of the harvest season. After all the watering and tending, apples and pumpkins finally abound. It is also the preparation for the quietude of winter as the animals scurry about cultivating their provisions. How might you fit into this cycle? Invite yourself to notice what you are “harvesting”. What thoughts, ideas, goals, and dreams have you spent the last year tending to? These are ones that are thriving. Are you happy with them? Allow yourself to feel a sense of pride as your hard-earned accomplishments come to fruition. And if some of these are not to your liking, perhaps you want to reconsider the amount of energy you wish to devote to them in the upcoming cycle. The good news is that the cycles by their very nature invite you to reset your priorities again and again as you grow and change. Perhaps you might even want to jot your thoughts in a journal for further reflection.
4. Color: One of the most outwardly recognizable aspects of Autumn is the gorgeous array of jewel-toned colors emblazoning the earth. One way to inject your busy life with a massive dose of fall is to surround yourself with a plethora of these colors even if you are stuck indoors. For instance, dare yourself to incorporate a touch of orange into your wardrobe. Place some deep reds and yellows on your desk at work. Challenge yourself to exercise your creativity and come up with new and innovative ways to surround yourself with the stunning hues of fall.
5. Read: In this crazed technological era in which we find ourselves, reading has almost become a lost art. Consider spending an autumn evening in warm fuzzy slippers enjoying some children’s picture books in celebration of fall even if there isn’t one child even remotely involved in your current existence. Don’t scoff! Children’s books are often both beautiful and touching, not to mention that the child inside of you deserves that nurturing as much as anyone. Try it and notice this simple pleasure rekindling for you the beauty of the season.
6. Listen: One of the traps of our society is the overemphasis on the sense of sight. Paying attention to alternative forms of navigating the environment sometimes offers a short cut into experiencing the moment. Allow yourself to play the game of autumn sounds. Notice the crunching of the fallen leaves, and the gusting of the seasonal winds. What else do you hear, and how is it unique to this very special time of year?
7. Touch: There’s a difference between rushing past the lovely fall foliage and actually experiencing it. Pick up a fallen leaf that interests you, or maybe two or three. Run your fingertip across the delicate pattern of veins and become aware of their leathery textures. Create a bouquet of leaves. Perhaps grab some acorn caps that the squirrels have left behind, and drop them into a bowl. And every time you pass by these fall treasures, let them remind you of how wonderful autumn can feel.
8. Observe the animals: The critters in our every day world know what we often forget. They are acutely aware of and in tune with seasonal change. Paying attention to their behavior is a fun and interesting way to increase our own awareness. Take a moment or two to sit outside and listen for birds, watch for squirrels, chipmunks, rabbits, or whatever wildlife happen to live in your area. What are they doing?
9. Reach out to a friend or loved one: Sometimes teaching is the best way of learning. Grab the phone and make a call. Better yet, grab a loaf of bread, some pumpkin muffins, a bottle of apple wine, or a pair of autumn-toned tapers wrapped in a bow, and visit a neighbor. Share some of your autumn observations. Conversations like these offer not only to help others rekindle their connections to nature (as well as to you) but also to help you strengthen your own as you wrap words around your thoughts and communicate them. The love you put out there no doubt comes back to you. <3
Many kind wishes as you enjoy this beautiful season.