Fall is here! The long, hot days of Summer are gone, and the mornings are darker a bit longer, and a touch cooler. You may feel a surge of energy during this time of year, as the blaring heat of Summer has taken its toll on our bodies. The fatigue felt in the heat is beginning to subside, and the cool, dewy Fall mornings feel refreshing and reflective. Those hot teas and mochas are sounding better and better as each new day rises. And as with any change in seasons, it is time to get ourselves ready, especially since Fall is the entryway into Winter.
The bright, bountiful season for our gardens may be coming to an end for this year, but there are several colder-weather crops you can plant to get more fresh food into your diet before Winter. Getting enough rich greens is important; they are chock full of chlorophyll, which can help fight viruses and cleanse the lungs. Plant kale, arugula, spinach, and Swiss chard as raw greens to get you through Fall. For vegetables, dark orange and green colors are rich in beta carotene and can protect us from colds and the flu. Beets and carrots are some of these vital vegetables that can be planted this time of year. Also think about saving a space for garlic. Garlic can be planted in September, and left in the ground until it is ready for harvest the following July. Garlic is an amazing herb for cleansing and overall health.
Animals are extremely in tune with the seasons. You may notice birds becoming restless; migration is just on the horizon for them. Hummingbirds are preparing for their long flight south, while turkeys are starting to come down from higher elevations. Elk and deer are congregating into large groups, while squirrels and chipmunks are hoarding seeds and nuts all over the forest. Overall, there is a lot of buzzing energy around wildlife as they start to prepare for Winter. It is a perfect time to hike through the forest or local nature reserve, just to watch the energy flit and fly around you. Spending some time in Nature during Fall will give you an energy boost as well. They are all wildly preparing, so why not spend some time preparing yourself?
Fall can bring to the surface some reflection time for which you may not be prepared. Grief, mourning, and forgiveness are important emotions to deal with during this season. The lungs and colon can be affected during the Fall; grief and unresolved sadness are associated with these organs. Increase your activity—take a yoga class, go for a light jog, or take the dog for a hike—and spend some time journaling and reflecting on what you may be hanging on to. It is healing and powerful to look directly at your sadness: draw it, give it a face, a name. Forgiveness can release your spirit, lift weight off of your shoulders, and free your mind. Fall is a time to let go before the quiet calm of Winter is here.
Take care of yourself this Fall, and embrace all this season has to offer.