Change is here. The summer heat is cooling down. The fall crisp air is beginning to settle in. The leaves are beginning to fade into orange and red tones. The days are getting shorter. School buses are on the roads during the morning and afternoon commute. College students are back in town for the fall semester. Change is taking place all around us. However, these changes are not only external but internal as well. Fall brings a new routine; a new rhythm within ourselves.
Over the past several weeks, I felt this shift taking place. The excitement generated by my new fall schedule made me hard wired to prepare for the next task and not take time for myself. I found it incredibly difficult to be reflective, to be thoughtful and to just be in stillness. This transition into the fall season changed the way I felt within myself. My rhythm changed.
When I did set aside time it I was faking it. Runs were rushed into tight timeframes without stretching or caring for myself afterwards and yoga practices were filled with racing thoughts of tasks I had to complete. My past grounding rituals weren’t cutting it and my physical body felt the effects.
One morning changed everything. I woke up and did a restorative, meditative yoga practice. It was amazing how grounded and at ease I felt just after 45 minutes. It made me realize that in times of transition it’s so important to listen to your body to understand what it needs instead of clinging to past rituals to feel grounded. As in my case, holding onto past routines with the anticipation of expected results can cause even more imbalances.
The transition from summer to fall is an important one. According to Ayurveda, summer is the season of pitta which symbolizes radiant energy, heat and the elements of fire and water. Fall is the season of vata. Vata’s characteristics are lightness, dryness, air and mobility. Reflecting upon these two very different seasons it’s easy to see how changes within my body were taking place and how I needed something else to feel balanced.
In the summer, I craved long runs in the morning to burn my fire and energy to feel grounded for the day. I naturally woke up earlier and felt more energized. I craved cooling foods and cold water. Now with fall upon me, I can see how my body requires more sleep, yearns to eat warm cooked foods and needs more stillness. The “fire” of summer has burned out and the dry air has signaled to me to slow down.
Change is here. A new season and a new beginning is before us. How are you going to take care of yourself through this transition?