Many people hold on to the idea of ‘Spring Cleaning’ and take that opportunity to clean out there homes, sort through their wardrobes and give life a bit of an overhaul. New Years is another one of those days, new year – new start where many take on personal overhauls, giving up smoking / starting diets etc..
But, here is something in between, what about an Autumn cleanse? The kids are back at school, you know you need to sort your wardrobe out because already the summer wardrobe of t-shirts and flip-flops has been replace with hoody’s and trainers. But do not despair, autumn is a fabulous chance to cleanse and set yourself up with new zest to see you survive the forthcoming winter.
So here is my tips to help you have a healthy autumn cleanse…
Home is where the heart is… Inside and out. Is it just my house whose shoe area is a collective of all four seasons? As much as you try and hold on to your flip-flops it is time to find them both and pack them away until next spring. Pack away all your summer clothing, and yes it might be time to actually throw some of it out. Not something I personally like doing, but have too. We all have the comfy clothes with that small hole, or that tiny stubborn stain. Yes, I convulse as I say this, but promise to practice what I preach and do it this very weekend and throw some of my haggard summer clothes out. Next, possibly more aimed at the women, but hey can apply to men too. We are talking make-up, yes the nearly empty pots and the brushes that have seen their hay-day. Bin it, you know much of it is years old anyway, treat yourself to some new autumn shades. With your wardrobes and draws done, get down to those kitchen cupboards and even the freezer. Declutter, throw away the rubbish and donate the unwanted. Be gone, be gone, be gone.
Got a garden, yes that is in here too. Pack away the BBQ, pick up all the pegs and cut the grass. If you really are into your gardening you know it’s time to spray the weeds and tidy those flower beds. Once it is done, it will keep fresh until next spring.
It’s all about You! Ladies you’ve thrown out the make-up and men you are not to macho for some pampering. Who is too busy for regular haircuts? Yes, that is me again – guilty as charged. Tame those looks, and men why not treat yourself to a professional hot shave. For either sex, sit back, relax and let someone else take care of you for an hour or so. Better still, one of my favourites is a trip to the spa, a whole day of relaxing and pampering. Okay, I am putting a date in my diary now 1st November.
Your home is sparkling (okay only for 24 hours if you have children like mine) your garden is prepared for winter, and you have pruned yourself and are feeling good. Next is time for our minds.
Mental and physical makeovers are often the ones we daunt the most. With the previous overhauls, each one can be accomplished within a 24 hour period whether it’s the house, garden or our personal grooming. Our minds and bodies on the other hand take daily effort, week after week, month after month, and sometimes year after year until it becomes subconsciously embedded.
So, let’s start with our bodies, most people I meet want to change something about themselves physically, whether it is to get fitter, lose weight, or to put weight on. I can tell you right now the only way you can achieve physical change is by one day at a time. So autumn is a fantastic time to make a change. Autumn to Christmas is a period of roughly three months. If I told you that you can lose that weight you've wanted to shift and go from struggling to walk a mile, to the ability of running three miles in just twelve weeks, would you believe me? Well, it is most certainly true, how do I know? I did it, that’s how I know. My twelve week journey made me realise that if we make the right choices we can achieve dramatic results that will create good habits. So, if you want it – work for it. Get off that couch today, start walking, you don’t necessarily have to do hours in the gym, just grab a friend or some tunes and get those feet moving one in front of the other. If weight is your thing, plan your diet and stick to it. How many days until Christmas? Is that all? You can do this one day at a time. What I do know is on Christmas day you will have physically overhauled yourself for approximately three months, and that is one hell of an achievement.
Now for the mental. Changing seasons is a great time to start with the mind, and in my opinion – the place to start is with mindfulness. On your walks take note of nature, at the moment there is an abundance of green but in the coming weeks’ notice the changing leaves, the magnitude of golden browns and oranges which cling to the branches and crackle when the wind blows. The swirl of leaves that float like tides across pavements which crunch under foot. The feel of the bite of the air on your nose in the morning. The taste of those classic winter warmer dinners, shepherd’s pie and toad in the hole, just like Nan used to make. Cherish your senses, and be grateful for being alive and remember we will spend a long time dead.
Finally, for the body and mind to be optimal your autumn cleanse is a great time to get your sleep right. To ensure a good night’s sleep stick to the same bedtime and wake up at the same time each day, even at the weekend! This helps to regulate your body clock. Wind down at bedtime with a book, just one chapter a night is a completed book in just a couple of weeks. If you read factual books, you could be a genius this time next year.
So take the above tips, to make some small manageable changes for the next 3 months or so, and then we can start again with the next stage – our New Year, new start.
In : Wellbeing
Tags: mindfulness decluttering autumn physical health weight loss mental health.