Happy Fall, y'all!
Cooler breezes have (finally) come through, our new schedules are in full swing, and a time of re-assessing our self-care practices is at hand. Season change can be a time of stress for the body - allergens affect many of us, weather changes can irritate our skin, and fading light may affect our energy levels and even our mood. How can we ease our transition from summer into fall? Here are a few simple tools you can use daily to feel your best this fall:
- Mind your water intake. Now that we're out of the intense heat of summer, it's easy to forget to stay hydrated. Try keeping a large water bottle with you throughout the day, with the goal of finishing the whole thing before dinner. If you have trouble drinking throughout a busy day, try starting your day with a big 20 oz. glass of water before you have anything else - you'll be off to a good start and you might naturally find yourself drinking more throughout the day.
- Create breathing breaks. To prevent and ease anxiety, and to remind yourself that there's more time that you think (really!), practice the following breathing exercise at least twice a day: Close your eyes, feel your feet on the ground and feel your seat in the chair. Inhale deeply and exhale fully. Begin to inhale slowly, counting silently as you go. Pause at the fullest breath. Exhale slowly, so that your exhale takes longer than your inhale did (i.e. If you inhaled for a count of 5, then exhale for a count of 6 or 7). Take 10 to 20 breaths in this way, and then give yourself a moment to notice the ease and space you just created for yourself. Continue on with your day in this more spacious way!
- Stimulate your skin. Daily dry brushing stimulates circulation of blood and lymph, invigorates the body and gently exfoliates the skin. Dry brush your whole body in upward strokes (towards the heart) in the morning to start your day, follow with your shower and finish by applying a high quality oil (i.e. grapeseed or coconut) to your skin while it's still a little wet, and massage in thoroughly. You'll enjoy softer, happier skin and maybe even a little more energy!
- Create (and stick to) a self-care routine. It's been said that the more we insist we don't have time to meditate, the more we truly need to meditate. The same could easily be said for exercise or massage! When we find ourselves saying we "don't have time to" take care of ourselves, that's the clear signal that we must put self-care on the calendar, right away. What that looks like may change throughout the seasons of our lives (i.e. a daily walk, a massage every couple weeks, 10 minutes of meditation per day, 10-15 minutes of mindful stretching after finishing our work), but this pre-holiday season is an excellent time to determine what best nourishes you, to make time for it in your schedule, and then stick to that schedule in the coming weeks and months. Those that depend on us will benefit from our self-care, and we're much more likely to care for and support others without depletion and resentment if we value our own nourishment as only we can.
May each of you enjoy a happy and healthy fall season. Be well, dear clients!
Certified Yoga Teacher
Certified Personal Trainer
Licensed Massage Therapist