The Autumn is officially upon us! The nights are drawing in really fast now and as we lose the daylight, I find it challenging to maintain my mood. So as the temperature drops, the leaves turn Red and Gold and half-term approaches, I wanted to share a few of my favourite ways to embrace the Autumn and boost your mood over the next few weeks….
- Get out and go for a walk. As the days shorten through October and November, here in Yorkshire, I like to try to make the most of the precious day light and get outside. Take time to absorb the beauty of Autumn and appreciate the soothing autumn colours whilst they are with us. – Seeking experiences that allow us to feel and express appreciation and gratitude are really great for our wellbeing. The fresh air and exercise will brighten your eyes and put a spring in your step too!
- Be creative! While I’m out and about, I like to collect treasures, and often come home with pockets full of sticks, conkers and fallen leaves. If you find that you or a small family member brings things home, display them – make one of those lovely little displays that we so often droll over on Pinterest (but never quite get around to making)! You can take 10 mins and really create a pretty leaf garland or a dried foliage display – giving yourself a neat little sense of achievement into the bargain – good for our self-esteem & mood!
- Turn the heat on. I really should live somewhere sub-tropical; however, my heart is in Yorkshire and the price I pay for living somewhere I love, is that it’s cold and damp. I try really hard not to turn the heating on until we really need it, wearing jumpers and scarves. But, having the heating on, even just a tiny bit, makes this time of year feel really cosy. Set your heating to come on for a short burst just before you get up, so you wake up to a lovely warm home and do the same for when you come home. If you want to wake up to a really sweet-smelling home put a few drops of essential oils on to a folded hanky or tissue and tuck it behind the radiator, as it warms it will release it’s fragrance. I like to use this organic, eco-friendly Orange essential oil room freshner ; it’s refreshing and comforting. A warm welcoming environment is a great mood booster.
- Make your Christmas cake & mash. So, this one sounds slightly random, but stay with me! As the days draw in, my need to eat carbs skyrockets and from now until May I will mainly be eating Potatoes – my favourite food group! Also, as we all know, a great festive dinner is really about all the little extras, such as roast and mashed spuds, 100 different veggies and ALL the sauces. However, preping the endless list of food can be a real pain, so I try to do some of it ahead of time. During October I buy, prepare and freeze pigs in blankets, bacon rolls, Bread sauce & Cranberry sauce. I make extra mash when cooking and freeze it; all ready for December. I like to make my Christmas cake at half-term, it gives us something useful to do, other than hibernating and it means we have a calmer Christmas. So why not give yourself an extra Christmas present and unload some of the stress and work for a fab Yule-tide, by doing some of the prep in October. Delicious smells and a warm kitchen, coupled with a sense of achievement is a top mood booster. Delia Smith has an excellent set of Christmas recipes & timings; as an act of self-care, get a copy of her book!
- Join in Halloween. We love Halloween in our house, but, so we don’t bankrupt ourselves we buy only one decoration each year, and store them carefully away afterwards to reuse. We now have good collection and add to it with homemade decorations (which we also reuse). Halloween can be as elaborate or simple as you like, but do join in, it’s a great way to meet your neighbours and join in with your local community and you don’t even have to take off your slippers or leave the house. So, grab a bowl-full of sweeties, stick a handful bats (cut them out of Black Sugar paper) to your front door, pop some eco-friendly solar powered LED jar lamp (DO NOT USE REAL CANDLES, there will be children about) in your carved pumpkin on the doorstep on October 31st and get ready to join in, meet the neighbours and feel part of something!
I hope you find my Autumn mood boosters helpful and have a great week!