Why and how to make a purposeful transition between seasons
Did you know the more connected we are with nature (like that of nature therapy), the healthier we may be?
Considering the great outdoors can do everything from nourish our bodies to boost our mood, it may be time to develop a deeper relationship with it in order to gain as many benefits as we can.
One way to do this is by seasonal living, in which aspects of our lives such as diet, movement, sleep, and activities are adapted to the specific time of year. Taking cues from light, the weather, plants, and animals, we can learn to live respectfully and in sync with the cycles of Mother Earth.
Doing this can take conscious effort yet creating a purposeful transition from season to season can be an easy and enjoyable approach.
First: Listen to your body
When temperatures change and the outside world begins to look different, we may experience signs pointing to what the body intrinsically needs.
Such seasonal transition cues can be:
- food cravings (such as fresh, crunchy greens in spring and warm root vegetables in fall)
- energy shifts (outward energy in spring/summer and inward energy in fall/winter)
- change of hobbies/interests based on weather and daylight
- the need for more or less sleep
- an overall sense of wanting change (like wanting to simplify or yearning to read more)
In addition, simply not feeling well in certain seasons (like having low energy, mood issues, and an overall sense of un-wellness) can be due to the lack of nourishment required for the specific season.
Listen closely to what your body desires and adapt diet, sleep, and routine to nurture its needs.
Next: Choose how you’ll tangibly transition
More than switching out your wardrobe or ordering a certain flavour of coffee, a distinct transition from season to season can bring closure to one way of living and open the door for another.
Ideas for this transition are:
- a diet reset or fasting to provide the digestive system rest and recovery
- taking a break from social media, news, and other online outlets to make space for reflection on the past season and goal setting for the new one
- mindful transitional movement such as yoga, stretching and walking
- focus on liquid intake for proper hydration
Transition periods can be what you choose, from one to three days to a week or longer.
Then: Live seasonally
Once a transition takes place, revel in the joy of the new season.
What you eat, how you move, when you sleep, and where you go can all be influenced by nature for optimal health.
For conscious seasonal living, try:
- cooking based on outdoor temperatures (cooling foods in spring and summer and warming foods in fall and winter) with a focus on in-season produce
- movement inspired by temperatures, daylight, and natural surroundings (such as running in spring, kayaking in summer, hiking in fall, and snowshoeing in winter)
- adjusting sleep patterns (more in winter for rest and recovery and less in summer for movement and harvest)
- dwelling in environments that fit the season (eating outdoors in summer or working from a cosy coffee shop in fall)
Even though we can access much of what we desire all year long and can choose to live the exact same way day to day, seasonal change can provide us with a variety of different nutrients, movements, and ways of living to enhance life.
Think about how you can gently evolve your daily routine to honour the season today.