Each season brings its share of delightful activities and Autumn is no different. The cooling weather, focus on family and coming holidays make it a special time of year. However, those same realities can also make it a stressful season. With just a bit of planning you can create space + time to thrive this season.
Here are 9 simple and practical ways to transition into Autumn gracefully while still building a spacious life:
1. Celebrate little moments for the rest of the summer. One of the easiest ways to welcome any change and still feel spacious is to enjoy the present season. This allows you to fully embrace the new without harboring regret about the past. How can you fully enjoy your last weeks of summer?
2. Consider how you want to feel this fall. Do you want to feel productive, energetic, creative, successful, powerful, protected, restful, scholarly, thoughtful or nurturing? Plan for it now. What needs to happen in advance for these feelings to be your reality come fall? Will you need to rearrange some details in your home or something in your schedule?
3. Set your fall goals in advance. When you set goals in advance it opens up space + time to simply take action at the right time. With the hard work of making decisions and creating a plan behind you you're able to jump right into action. So, what is your goal looking forward? For example, if you hope to start or finish a particular creative project lay out the details now including important dates or deadlines, locations where the work will happen, necessary tools or materials and allowances in your timeframe for life to get in the way. Then you can go back to tip #1 knowing you're ready to spring into action when the time comes.
4. Begin gathering inspiration. The time for being inspired is before crunch time. Do you plan on hosting a fall dinner party, celebration, or holiday? Find and organize your inspiration and preliminary plans at least a month in advance. This gives you time to gather needed supplies and to either simplify or embellish your initial vision based on your current reality.
5. Put seasonal activities on the calendar. Are you just hoping you remember to decorate pumpkins on time or visit a pumpkin patch or corn maze on the best weekend? Waiting until the last minute to consider these trivial details only makes them more stressful and less fun. Go ahead and put those things on your calendar right now.
6. Allow time to transition. Autumn has a tendency to naturally slow the pace of life. Even if this is a welcome change for you it may take time to enjoy it. Just as you can create space + time in the home to transition well throughout the day so you can create space + time in the schedule to transition into a new season. Whenever your "back to fall" week lands on the calendar, simply schedule a handful of special outings, treats or time to decorate. Five minutes a day, spent intentionally transitioning from one season to another, increases a sense of control and therefore lowers stress. Time to transition is really just taking the time to actively participate.
7. Design the details. The blankets and hot cuppa and focus on conversation and time to linger and details you create within the home all play a part in hosting the season. In fact, every detail you design aids how you want to feel (tip #2) and your your goals (tip #3.) In addition to actively designing details you also passively design the details when you allow for time to experience the moment. Allowing for 3 minutes just to play in the leaves can feel as spacious as 2 hours chatting with friends over coffee. Small moments hold heaps of possibility when you're building spacious days.
8. Get creative. Every transition can benefit from a creative outlet and this is especially true in fall as your life starts moving indoors more. Give yourself permission to use some of your time and resources for a creative project. Short creative projects could replace trips to the river or swimming pool while tackling a 3 month creative project could replace summer's lost sense of adventure. In addition, intentionally creating also helps you with tip #7.
9. Let go of the expectations. Is life different this year? Are you feeling less enthusiastic about all the trivial details of the season? Good news -- this years Autumn doesn't have to be as all out as last year or match your neighbors enthusiasm. Give yourself permission to enjoy only the details of the season that contribute to your goals, support your relationships and benefit the spacious life you are building.