Fall is coming, the air is changing, and the leaves are turning. This time of year can be exciting for some, and difficult for others. One noticeable change around the Northern Hemisphere is the shorter days. You may notice that you want to stay in bed longer as the sun rises later each day.
While I think it is important to listen to your body and what it needs, especially during a pandemic, it is also important to find ways to enjoy parts of your day and embrace them. It’s okay to have bad days, and it’s also okay to feel different feelings throughout the day.
Here are eight different ways to embrace the shorter days:
- Implement (or re-implement) sleep hygiene. As it is harder to wake up in the dark, getting better and more consistent habits at night can make it easier to wake up in the morning.
- Get outside. As the leaves begin and continue to change, getting outside enjoying the fall experience can make it more enjoyable.
- Apple Picking. I’ve never done it, but I’ve seen the cute photos on Instagram and so if it can safely be done during COVID-19, then give it a try!
- Make soup. As the weather begins to turn, lean into your favourite recipe and turn that stove on.
- Light more candles. Some may say that lighting candles create a sense of calm, and during turbulent times, we need to find all the calm we can. I would recommend embracing fall scents, including cinnamon or apple cinnamon.
- Take more baths. Baths to some feel like a warm hug, and that is definitely something we need during the turn of a season and a pandemic.
- Movement. whether it be outside, online, or in a socially distanced fitness class, it is important to move your body each day. Movement can help one’s mental health, whether it be a light stretch in the morning or a HIIT class after work.
- Embrace TV. Slowing down is just as important as moving your body. Typically, this time of year is the beginning of new shows and new seasons. While that may be delayed this year, Netflix and other services are constantly coming out with new content.
The shorter days and greyer days can affect motivation and mental health. While these are just mere suggestions, also pay attention to how you are feeling and if you are needing additional support, reach out to your doctor or mental health professional.
Written by Alana Kaplan, Project Manager for the I Am Resilient Project.