Autumn Energy - Seasonal Self Soothing.



We may already be feeling the effects of the seasons change and as the clocks have gone back today I feel its only right to share some tips that can aid your health and wellbeing this time of year! Its normal to feel deflated, tired, sluggish and notice that your motivation or pep in your step has started to dwindle. This Autumn & winter is a time for quiet contemplation, retraction and hibernation. If nature can move through this time of year with honouring nourishment from within, slowing down and shedding layers, so can we!


Adjusting your body clock.

With darker mornings and evenings it can seem to wreak havoc on our body clocks, for me even leaving the house at night to teach an 8pm class seems strange when its so dark! You will find that our bodies have their own routines & rhythms, and if we are mindful you may notice that we can create a balanced routine with natures circadian rhythm. As we all have different routines with work/life make sure you get as much natural light as you can within those hours it's available. Our bodies cannot thrive on blue light and screen time so soak up as much day time as you can, even if it's cloudy or rainy.


Feel the temperature.

Cold showers might not be at the top of the list when it's cold and damp outside but we can still honour the cooler temperatures to aid in building resilience. Be mindful to not have the heating on full blast, this can dry hair, skin, cause headaches and disturb sleep. Giving your body a little cold (tepid) shower after your hot 15 minutes can aid in lymph drainage, circulation and wake up the muscles. You don't need to have it freezing!!! Simply turning the dial down until you notice a difference or tingles will be just as good, 30 seconds, 1 minute, what ever you feel. Strong contrasts in changing temperature can throw our constitution off, I ALWAYS felt the cold, honestly with 5 layers of jumpers & thermals on I still wouldn't warm up, since cold showering my body has adjusted and I hardly feel the cold anymore. Like creates like, so if you cant stand the cold and you're always needing to be warm it might be a sign you have to do a little training to create harmony!


Honour your movement.

With the cold days appearing more and more its very normal for you to notice that motivation decreases and you're not as energetic to go for a swim at 6am or enjoy a fast paced practice. Yoga teaches us to be adaptable so maybe its time to mix things up, you can do nice slow practices like Yin, Restorative Yoga, Pilates or even weight training. Learn to slow down when you feel it in your body, as the qualities or Autumn are drying, harsh and brittle it can often make our energies feel the same! Creaking shoulders, dry skin and aching joints are seasonal too, its very normal for us to get more inflammation within the body too as the synovial fluid has less fluidity or has a higher viscosity. So next time you're putting yourself down about not being able to do what you could over summer, just be more adaptable and accepting that its okay to change your routine to suit your needs right now.


Eating Seasonal

This is a big one! Not only this time of year but through the whole year, have you noticed your not reaching for fresh salads now its Autumn? The comfort food appears, and that could look like anything to you, you'll also notice that you cant seem to stop eating... especially if you feel the cold! We are entering hibernation mode! The best thing to explore is seasonal foods (googles a great place) and incorporate them into your meals, soups and broths are great this time of year as our digestion may get a little constipated due to Vata qualities. Hearty meals with vegetables, grains and carbohydrates are wonderful! We are currently eating lots of pasta with handpicked veggies from Bells Farm Shop. Eating seasonal aids our bodies healing and keeps us in rhythm with nature all year round.


Journalling.

Writing things down can be incredibly beneficial for our busy minds, sometimes things can feel so overwhelming and can just pile up in that spongey brain of ours. Have you ever gone to bed and noticed the moment you close your eyes that suddenly your mind is SHOUTING at you? So much so there is no chance of falling asleep peacefully.


Nature time.

Nature time is always going to be high up on my self care list! It's so incredibly important to make an effort to pull ourselves out of the day to day grind and just be out in the wild for a while. If you're based in Worcestershire we are very lucky to have green spaces in almost all directions, within 20 minutes we could be walking a lovely wood or river landscape. Nature offers us self soothing qualities, that there are no demands, opinions, expectations, you can just sit (or walk) and be completely yourself. Listen to the birds, watch the trees and even do a little wildlife spotting or foraging.


Socialise.

Some of us may be very social creature, others not so much, either way a wonderful way of helping us feel less isolated with darker days is to connect with others. It doesn't have to be going to the pub on a Friday night and drinking until 4am the next morning, it could be a walk with a friend, a meal with family, a day out with the kids. Something as simple as inviting a friend over for a cuppa can be so profound, socialising doesn't need to cost anything and the benefits of human connection are endless. Surround yourself with people that lift and light you up, that offer you support in return of yours. Find your tribe & love them hard. Even if its a phone call or face time being able to communicate and express yourself can have such a positive effect on our mood and wellbeing.


Honouring your pace.

Last but not least is honouring our own needs. Its going to feel very familiar that we cannot always keep up with the fast pace of life, we cannot always keep on top of the to do list and ironing pile, we cant get to all the family gatherings and we cannot do it ALL! When we the last time you went to something and knew inside you really didn't want to? You said yes to something when you really meant no. Honouring your pace and feelings play a huge part in how we navigate life. Re-arrange stressful activities or events for another time. Plan relaxing activities that help you come back home to yourself. Make more spare time to rest or do things you enjoy. Learn to say no to the things you really don't want to do. Find your pace by communicating with others about how you feel, your needs and wants. Most of the time we don't share our feelings and they can get misread, we must remember that people are not mind readers!


I hope these tips give you a little inspiration, don't worry about doing them all at once, take what you need, leave what you don't. Take your time with adapting through this next chapter of the year!


If you want a little guidance and personal encouragement Im leading a 'Create a self care practice' workshop on Saturday 19th November 11.00-1.00pm, based in Kidderminster.<