Are you feeling a little pooped this week? Some of you are cruising through Fall and this Time Change and others..well, not so much. Even though my dog Jammers ( pictured above cuddled up in her blankets) doesn’t seem to be bothered by the Time Change, she actually is a little bothered. She is “off” this week, pacing around and getting up two or three times in the night. This isn’t helping the general level of fatigue in our household. So, what to do?
This is where Illuminate, Hydrate and Meditate comes to the rescue!
This to me is first and foremost. The drop in light in general and now at the end of the day can mean more fatigue, increased food cravings, more pain, increased anxiety and sleep disruptions. This is all due to less of the “feel good” neurotransmitter Serotonin whose production is decreased in the body when light decreases. Here are some ways to Illuminate the Fall Season:
1) SADD Light (Seasonal Affective Disorder Light) – Sitting in front of the light for just 20-30 minutes a day in the Fall/Winter Season can help bring up those Serotonin levels. They are available at local pharmacies and your doctor and pharmacist will also be familiar with the benefits and protocol for the light. I have had one for over 20 years and love it! If you get a chance to swing by Findlays for their open house on November 18th, a little bird told me there may be some deals on SADD lights and Salt Lamps.
2) Candles, Salt Lamps, Fireplaces, Diffusers – Although they don’t directly affect our Serotonin levels the light does make us feel good. If you haven’t had a chance to pick up the latest SAGE Magazine( available at Chartrands), they have a great article on Hygge. Hygge is a Danish word and concept meaning “coziness”. If you search up Hygge you will find lots of information and entire books on the history, meaning and how it contributes to Danish Happiness. Danish people fill their homes with candles, wood burning fireplaces and lots of comfy blankets and pillows. Although they are not much in to scented candles, here in Canada we love them. I find the combination of light, warmth and aroma extremely comforting and therapeutic in the colder, darker months.
3) Get outside when you can ( but not today!). The snow today actually added some lightness to the dark and gray except that you couldn’t see it with all the snow blowing in your face. When there is less snow blowing, a short walk outside between 10 and 2 ( during the darker months) is ideal to fill up on some much needed light energy.
Even with the rain and snow, it is the driest time of the year. Your skin, lips, eyes, nose, entire body is dry. So….
1) Indulge with a velvety luxurious cream or oil just for this time of year ( treat yourself). Not too hot showers and cream up right away. I do love my epsom salts baths but have to remember not too hot and too long ( this is a tough one for me).
2) Drink water or herbal teas often even though you are not thirsty. We don’t seem to feel as thirsty in the Fall but we can actually be drier than the summer. Out of sight is out of mind for me, so a jug or bottle of water always has to be in view.
3) Drag out your neti pot or sinus rinse to clean out those nostrils so they are well prepared to defend against allergens, bacteria and viruses and they help with the dryness.
Other signs of dehydration are muscle cramps, foggy brains and fatigue so if you have any of this going on right now, notice how you feel when you increase your water intake. It always has a positive effect on me.
The Fall, for many, is the best time of the year to meditate. We are naturally turning inward, hunkering down for a long winter and perhaps even becoming a little introspective. It is the perfect time to settle in and enjoy some “me” time. Here’s how…
1) Find a comfortable quiet spot and set a timer on your phone/stove and follow your breath from 1 minute – 20 minutes. When you mind wanders from your breath just bring it back to your breath.
2) Use an Ap ( such as Insight Timer) to follow guided meditations and add some variety in to your daily meditation practice.
3) Join a Class or Meditation Group. I have a Facebook Group that “meets” every Friday morning at 7:00 a.m. Live on Facebook for 20 minutes. You can join in live at 7 or watch the replay at your convenience. If you are interested, just send me your email and I will send you an invite.
4) Be Mindful as you walk around. The Fall offer so many sights, sounds, aromas, tastes and textures to fill the senses. Enjoy all of the them!
So, remember when you are feeling like the darker months are getting you a little down….Illuminate, Hydrate and Meditate!
Lorrie Mickelson M.A., B.A/BPHE, Registered Yoga Teacher, Certified Pilates Instructor, Certified Personal Trainer, firstname.lastname@example.org, 705 647 2848