Tips for Autumn
Carlos Durana Ph.D., M.Ac. practices acupuncture in Reston, Virginia, Bethesda, Maryland and in Washington D.C.
1. Gathering. Be aware of what you value. What is really essential to you? Notice your strengths and qualities. Focus on what is positive in your life. Honor yourself. Extend this attitude to others and nature. Recognize, praise and compliment others. Notice the beauty of life.
2. Practice breathing exercises. Think of the breath as a way to enhance not only your energy but the quality of what you allow yourself to receive from life and others. The breath also provides inspiration, and it links us to our spiritual nature and the natural rhythm of our body as well as its link to the rhythms of nature.
3. Exercise. Incorporate practices that focus on the breath and keep the chest and lungs open and clear. This will also help in ridding the self of non-essentials.
4. Meditate. Focus on quieting, internalizing your awareness, letting go what is not needed, and most importantly notice the interconnectedness of everything. Ask yourself, what are my deepest values? What really matters and what is not so important?
5. Releasing. Practice releasing what is no longer needed. Notice that movement in autumn. By letting go of old hurts ad resentments and by grieving losses, we can make room for new things, inspiration and revelations. Through emptying we can take in and enhance the quality of our life.
6. Individuation. Balance the need for self versus the need for others.
Having more of ourselves and gaining insight into our uniqueness (not our separateness) enhances our process of self-actualization (spiritual growth).
7. Refinement. Excel at your endeavors but avoid perfectionism. Do your best. Question your standards. Am I too critical or perfectionistic?
8. Rituals. Value the use of rituals as a way to enhance access to your deeper self. This may be something as simple as lighting a candle when meditating, watching the sunsets or drinking a cup of tea.
9. Housecleaning. Give away or throw out what is no longer of use.
10. Eating. In autumn as the temperature cools, our bodies begin to crave different foods. Eat foods that are in season and make sure to include high-fiber foods that will enhance the function of the colon. Spicy foods can also enhance the function of the lungs.