How to feed your soul as winter approaches

I love the change in the seasons, and am lucky to live in a beautiful place where I get the opportunity to be up close and enjoy the joy that is autumn.

Autumn never lasts long enough for me, the gorgeous colours, the bright blue skies and the cold wind on your face, it’s a great time to be out enjoying nature.  As the leaves falls, we are reminder that winter is on its way.

The temptation for many as the days grow shorter, and the temperature drops is to retreat indoors, to the warmth of the fire.  This can be a great thing but I like to think that autumn is a great time to invest in your wellbeing. Planning ahead can ensure that you still get to feed your soul during the winter months.

Autumn allows us to think about how to make time in our busy lives to rest and reflect and prepare for winter.

For me this means yoga, meditation, food and reading.

My yoga is likely to change with the seasons. In autumn I opt for a more gentle and mindful practice, that is focused on breath and grounding. I will still try to get out and do this outdoors, adding extra layers. Early evening as the sun goes down is a magical time to take your mat out and experience some ‘me time’. Restorative or Yin classes become more appealing, especially when they include meditation and candles.

Meditation is becoming mainstream as more and more people come to recognise the benefits it brings. If it is something that has alluded you then remember you do not have to be sitting in lotus position in a yoga studio to do it.  There are many different ways to meditate, lying down in bed when you first wake in the morning, or at night before you go to sleep. A walking meditation is also great at this time of year.  On a slow walk you can become mindful of the experience of walking, keeping your awareness involved with the experience of walking and becoming aware of your body.

Autumn food should be nourishing and warming, I turn to soups, dahls and hot winter salads that include slow roasted vegetables. There will also be cake, as for me this is necessary in every season!

I also start to stockpile books in the autumn, ready for my winter reading.  Yoga books of course and spiritual books that will feed my mind.  Although I am also fond of a thriller or popular fiction for when I want to be entertained; taking time out to read for pleasure is a real luxury that I usually save for winter.

So as the clocks change and winter calls, why not lessen the noise from the build up to Christmas, turn your attention inwards, focus on what your mind and body needs and feed your soul this winter.

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