The transition to fall brings a period of change that elicits anxiety for a lot of people. It marks the end of summer, a season characterized by sunshine, relaxation + easy living which is hard for many to let go of. A lot of us are also adjusting to new schedules during the fall; children are back in school, daylight is dwindling, the temperatures are getting cooler + we’re beginning to ready ourselves for (and sometimes dread) the upcoming winter. If you’ve previously experienced Seasonal Affective Disorder (more on that in a future post), you may be starting to get nervous that it will be making another appearance soon. Sometimes this transition can present us with an uneasy feeling even if there are no other major changes happening in our lives.
It’s all completely normal, but there are strategies for making it easier.
Here are some practical tips for easing your anxiety and maintaining Mind Body wellness as we continue the transition into the fall + winter months.
Understand What’s Happening
When you’re feeling anxious or a little bit “off,” it can often worsen when we are unable to identify the root or source of the problem. Sometimes it’s beneficial just to know if you tend to have a difficult time with seasonal transitions. You may be able to look back and identify patterns of feeling anxious during the start of each season + recall how you were previously able to adjust. This can help remind you of past success and empower you to do it again.
Find Your Flow
There are often big changes to our daily routines with the start of the fall season. Be sure to keep your health at the top of your priority list and schedule enough time for exercise, self-care + leisure activities that you enjoy. The quicker you can adjust to the new routine, the easier the transition.
With less daylight, it may be harder to find motivation to keep up with your usual exercise schedule. But exercise is crucial for both positive emotional + physical health. New research says that exercising just 1 time a week is enough to cut your risk of depression by 50%. I think that’s doable for all of us.
Although the temperature may not be conducive to going to the beach or lounging by the pool, the weather is often ideal for outdoor activities during the fall months. Go for a walk, eat lunch outside, cut the grass; spending just 15 minutes outside each day has been shown to reduce anxiety and have positive effects on our overall mental health.
With summer over + fewer events to attend, it may feel like the ‘pause’ button was pressed on your social life. But this is a good time to reset, restore and refocus. It’s perfectly normal to find yourself craving less social interaction + more time to yourself; this is your body telling you it’s time to rest. Give yourself permission to use this extra time for a little more self-care.