As the leaves turn their beautiful shades and the weather starts to cool, a sense of relaxation and slowing down from the busy summer seems to be at hand. What better season to focus on SELF. Here are some self-care ideas for Fall.
#1 Enjoy Autumn
Plan creative, fun-loving Autumn activities. Consider what you liked as a kid. Here are some ideas.
Pumpkin picking, Apple-picking, Hayrides, Fall foliage viewing, Walk, Watch soccer, Watch scary (or not-so-scary) Halloween movies, Put up Fall or Thanksgiving decorations, have a chili contest, attend Oktoberfest
#2 drink something warm
Tea, coffee, cider, or cocoa can be very soothing. On a cold morning, I love holding a warm cup.
Take your time and savor this self-care practice; don't gulp it in the car. With five extra minutes, you can sit quietly, breathe deeply, and drink. What a great way to start the day, unwind in the afternoon, or relax at night.
#3 support a worthy cause
October and November honor many good causes (domestic violence, breast cancer, pregnancy and infant loss, get out the vote – to name just a few). Investing time, energy, and money in a passion project can boost your mood and make you feel empowered and hopeful.
#4 set limits
Boundaries don't involve controlling or changing others. Setting and enforcing boundaries is a form of self-care. They help you prioritize and avoid overcommitting or signing up for things you can't do.
Autumn marks the start of the busy holiday season. We must balance obligations, invitations, expectations, and traditions. It's healthy to protect your mental health by saying "no" to draining people and events.
#5 request assistance
Without self-care, you'll be exhausted, burned out, and resentful. Asking for help can help you avoid negative feelings, but many of you avoid it. It can feel vulnerable if you have unrealistic expectations or have been rejected before.
We don't want to burden others. This is a fear-based assumption, not reality. Most people help when they can. They likely enjoy helping you.
Your sister might bring a dish to Thanksgiving, and your neighbor might water your plants when you're away. When you ask for help, your loved ones feel valued and respected.
It's okay if people can't or won't help. Accept and respect their boundaries. But asking for help isn't wrong. It's a reasonable way to care for yourself.
#6 enjoy the warm weather
Depending on where you live, it may be chilly. As winter approaches, the Northern Hemisphere gets less and less sunshine, so make the most of the remaining warm, sunny days by spending time outside.
Fall and winter mean spending more time indoors, so it's important to have a relaxing environment.
Americans are stuffed. I don't mean extreme hoarding, but piles of mail, unpacked boxes from your last move, or your 1995 CD collection. This can affect your mood.
Clutter can cause anxiety and depression. Autumn is a good time to declutter and make your home a calm refuge.
Start by separating items into trash, donate, and sell boxes or bags. Daily, put ten items in one of the three bags. If you want to go beyond de-cluttering, consider diffusing essential oils, playing soothing music, or brightening the décor.
#8 create a fall routine
Most people's self-care routines include exercise. Even if you dread starting, most people feel better after stretching and exercising.
Plan some indoor activities if you've been exercising outside. Sign up for a class, ask a friend to walk with you, or find some at-home videos.
Adjust your routine so you won't be caught without indoor exercise plans.
#9 record your gratitude
Gratitude journals are a quick and effective way to shift our focus from our problems and worries to the good in our lives.
We focus on the negative. It's hard to notice your strengths, blessings, simple pleasures, and what's working. Gratitude journals improve physical and mental health, sleep, empathy, self-esteem, and relationships.
Purchase a good journal and pen (something special that will encourage you to write) and set aside 5-10 minutes in the morning or before bed to list three things you're grateful for. 30 gratitude journal prompts if you're stuck.
Baking is creative. It promotes mindfulness and reduces stress. And they're delicious! Baking brings back fond memories and allows you to express your love for others.