Fall is more than pumpkin spiced lattes and breaking out the long forgotten winter clothes. With the changing of the seasons we are reminded that we too run on a cyclical path. After intense outward energy all summer long, it’s healthy to take an inward look at ourselves with the upcoming fall equinox.
connecting with the changing of the seasons
As we follow the cycles of the earth, we become more connected to our inner beings and more conscious of and intentional with our actions. So what does fall equinox mean for you and how do we connect deeper than ever this fall?
Fall signifies a time to harvest; for some that means crops or gardens, for others it means harvesting the products of the hard work you put into your goals. It’s time to consider where you are with the goals you set this year and reap the rewards of all you’ve done to pursue them.
a fall equinox ritual
With a spiritual harvest in mind, I’ve began a two-part, nightly fall equinox ritual to appreciate how far I’ve come so far and set my intention going forward.
I started crafting my intention ritual by examining my year so far. I examined my goals– the hard, set-in-stone goals that came with the New Year, and the ones that never made it onto paper, mostly because of self-doubt. I made a list of everything I had hoped for in 2018 and then, without judgement, I assessed where I was with each goal and how I felt about it.
Assessing your goals
Some goals had been put on the backburner and I didn’t care at all, other neglected goals weighed heavier on me, and many had been pursued proudly. Once I felt I had honestly gauged my progress I asked myself “How did I get here?”
For some goals the answer made me cringe and other times I wanted to give myself a pat on the back. But the key to deeper self-exploration is to take full responsibility for your path, never shifting the blame to others or external forces.
Choosing a mantra
I chose my mantra based on the answer to this question. I wanted it to represent the love and appreciation I have for the progress I’ve made, while also pushing me forward with the energy from my spiritual harvest.
All of my experiences are right and good. They have brought me here today. I hold all as true. Moving forward, I chose which energies to carry with me and I will do so with love.
Everyone will have a different focus, but I offer you mine as an example and a starting place for you to find yours.
Part 1: Appreciation and Gratitude
Before I move into my mantra, I take about 15 minutes to show my body and mind appreciation. I use a coconut body oil to give myself a deep massage. Every night I focus on a different area of the body, showing love to each part and sometimes focusing on areas of pain. While I massage an area I think about all of the reasons I’m grateful for this body part and how it has affected my journey thus far.
diving into a gratitude practice
Thank your fingers for everything they do daily. Thank your belly for its possibilities. Thank your knees for carrying you. The more specific you can be about how the body part helped you to your goal, the more meaning you are giving the practice.
You might feel silly at first, but your body will know it’s being loved and you’ll feel it spiritually and physically.
Part 2: Setting Intention
After fully giving my body some TLC, I’m ready to look ahead and set my intention. I like to lay on a firm area—for me, it’s generally my yoga mat on the floor. I keep my palms down to find the grounding energy of the earth and I repeat my mantra to solidify my intention for the rest of the year.
You can repeat it out loud, in your head, or whatever you feel comfortable with. I find either way, this practice serves as a form of meditation. I generally repeat my intention for about three minutes or until I feel ready. Some days it’s longer, others it’s a little more difficult and I allow myself to end early with no judgement.
committing to your ritual
Doing this before bed not only relaxes you, but it also focuses your mind on your mantra and intention before sleep which can lead to vivid and guiding dreams.
Something I’ve found after taking the time to do my nightly ritual for about a week, is that it’s really easy to make excuses not to take care of ourselves. But when you commit to an intention, you’ll find your busy day feels more organized and focused and the ritual begins to make itself fit.