As I sit on a train heading for London, the sun is rising and it is always stunning when the horizon starts to glimmer in a kaleidoscope of oranges and reds. It makes me wonder in awe at the amazingness of life and this planet we call home. October is also the time of the year (at least in the United Kingdom), where the nights are starting to draw in and you can feel a slight chill in the air.
Sandwiched between summer and winter, autumn is the “cooling off” season. Most vegetative growth decreases. Animals begin to prepare for the dearth of food that generally comes during the winter, gathering supplies or traveling to warmer climates. Our digestive system starts to slow down, ready for hibernation. We start to move less. The property market tends to slow down. Trees are starting to shed their leaves in preparation for winter.
Autumn tends to be windy, changeable, dry, rough and cool.
It is generally regarded as the end of the growing season. Also known as the harvest season, autumn ushers in a time of celebration for many farming cultures when they gathered in their crops.
Generally, this time of the year is a time to focus on stability, grounding, warming and nurturing. What we also want to prevent a sense of heaviness setting in too soon, before winter, is to keep our systems moving gently.
So, here are some tips to help you through this time of the year:
- Develop a daily routine of waking and going to bed at the same time. Whilst we want to keep moving and prevent sluggishness and lethargy from setting in, we also want to contain that within a structure that will support us during this time of change.
- Regular physical activity. Be moving. Find something you love doing, and keep doing it. Get to the yoga studio. Go to the gym. Get outside for a walk. Put your favourite tune on and dance around the house to it. Anything! Just keep moving. This will also help our digestive system moving well.
- Have a nourishing diet that will help balance the characteristics of air, space and movement, which are prominent in Autumn. Soups, stews and warm grain ‘porridge’ are ideal choices. Cooking with warming spices such as cloves, ginger, cardamon, nutmeg and cinnamon will be beneficial to maintain balance and wellbeing throughout the colder months. Avoid cold and raw foods. Sip on warm water/herbal teas throughout the day.
- The change in season is a good time to detox an rid the body of accumulated toxins. Ayurveda focuses strongly on prevention. Now is the time to prevent seasonal changes affecting your health and wellbeing over the coming months. Swap your personal care products over to cleaner ones. Do a 30 day detox (which I’ll be doing starting October 7th), to give your digestive system a break.
- On that note, go for a colonic irrigation session. I had my first many years ago, and the therapist recommended having it done twice a year, when the seasons and our diet change.
- Read. Keep your mind active by nourishing it with a good book.
Ultimately, find the balance and ride the shift in the season. Till next time ….