Fall is a time of transition. It is evident everywhere around us. The trees and shrubs are quietly undressing in preparation for the winter. The earth is browning and our first snow has fallen with the temperatures shifting into the crisp chill of autumn. And there is the wind: slowly gathering strength, carrying the tides of winter on its breath.
The autumn harbors a certain emptiness that can leave us feeling exposed and a little raw, but it is also filled with possibility—a time when we, too, can strip down to a quiet essence of being and savor the simplicity.
According to Ayurvedic science, Fall brings with it a predominance of the air element and prana – the vital breath, the subtle essence of life. Autumn is dry, rough, windy, erratic, cool, subtle, and clear. These are all qualities shared by Vata dosha, and because like increases like, autumn is considered a Vata season.
A seasonal routine is an important cornerstone of health, year around. Balancing the nature of our local climate with lifestyle choices that offset the potential for seasonally-induced imbalances is one of the simplest ways that we can protect our well-being. By making diet and lifestyle choices that counter the effects of the season, we can better maintain our internal sense of equilibrium throughout the year.
This is what we are doing through YogaMotion’s Qualitarian Cleanse – a 21-day guided course for shifting habits and aligning with the season to strengthen the immune system in preparation for winter. By cleaning up our eating habits, clearing out our home of excess junk, and clarifying our relationships with both our self and those around us, we expand our ability to thrive in life. We repeat this practice in the Spring as cleansing twice a year during these transitionary seasons help to regain and maintain a more authentic and vibrant way of being.
To balance the aggravations of autumn, fill it with warmth, deep nourishment, loving relationships, and a sense of stability, routine, and groundedness. Below are some very effective practices to support you through this season with ease and a whole lot of self-love.
One of the most effective ways to support Vata is by establishing a daily routine. Try to do the same things (wake up, exercise, eat meals, go to bed, etc.) at roughly the same times each day. Set the tone for your day by rising early, taking full advantage of the silence, stillness, and peace that are intrinsic to the early morning hours.
Also some gentle yoga, and ten to fifteen minutes of meditation to further your sense of stability and wellness will start your day right. If you enjoy a little fragrance, vetiver, geranium, and citrus essential oils are very appropriate this time of year. Eat an earlier, lighter dinner to help you get to be in bed by 10 p.m. so that you get plenty of rest before dawn. This will have you greeting each new day feeling relaxed and vibrantly alive.
Here’s a video of some very simple, yet powerful, self-care techniques for you to add to your morning routine.