Fall is harvest: a time of abundance. However, oftentimes during this time of the year with busy schedules and windy, frigid weather, we can feel drained and depleted. As we shift into Autumn here in the Northern Hemisphere, this is a great opportunity to step back and re-set our mindsets and habits in order to thrive.
Ayurveda, the ancient wisdom from India, is premised upon balance in the mind, spirit, and body to bring about and maintain ideal health. This season, I am taking Ayurvedic cues not only on balancing my diet and lifestyle but my financial wellness as well.
New Year, New Habits
In both the Jewish and Ayurvedic calendars, the new year is in the fall. This year, the Fall Equinox falls on September 23, 2019. With a new school year and the changing of seasons, this is a chance to start over and re-focus on the habits that will help us to thrive. It can be an opportunity to boost to our mindsets and motivation, similar to the effect of the calendar New Year!
HOW TO THRIVE WITH THE CHANGING OF THE SEASONS
How to take advantage of this new year? Align and re-set your physical and financial health.
From an Ayurvedic perspective, Fall is a time of ‘Vata’. Vata embodies the characteristics of being light, cold, wiry and dry. Imagine wind, crisping leaves, cooling temperatures and then the adjustments our bodies must go through in relation to our environment. We are indoors more, exposed to viruses and the dry air of heating systems. There are also thinner ‘veils’ around our immune system.
Combat these conditions by taking cues from nature. Plants and animals are starting to slow down and shed what is no longer needed. Trees start conserving energy. Squirrels are stashing away the abundant resources of harvest into reserves for the coming days ahead. We can do the same and it is healthy to do so!
- Slow down and rest. Ensure you are getting plenty of sleep each night. This is one of the best (and FREE) immune system boosters available.
- Focus on insulation and protection: clothing, food, and drinks. You can create an additional “layer” externally with outerwear and “insulation” internally with warm, wet, heavy and dense foods such as broths, soups, spiced apple cider (seasonal and warming), healthy oils (ghee, raw olive and sesame), cooked vegetables over grains, pear butter, pomegranates, persimmons and other foods high in Vitamin C, pro-biotic and electrolyte-rich food and drinks… Try to consume the opposite of airy, light, cold, dry, and wiry.
With Your Money
- Squirrel away funds now, for the rainy days to come. For many of us, this means gift-buying and giving, holiday entertaining and special outings or events. It can also mean more travel and expenses which drain the finances. How much can you divert into a savings account? How can you boost your income now to set aside for later?
- Shed what is no longer needed, financially. Trim back. Being mindful and connected to your money now, will literally pay off in another couple of months.
- Set intentions and financial goals to accomplish by the end of the year. This is a chance to re-set any habits you have fallen into which are not serving you. Write down your goal and action items and post them in a visible place! Who is holding you accountable and by when? Some examples: give gifts of time and experiences this holiday season, create your emergency preparedness kit, create and follow a budget.
“To attain freedom, discipline’s required.” Dr. Vasant Lad
Mentally and Emotionally
- Ensure emotional balance. Set time aside each day (even 5 minutes), to be mindful. This can include meditation, journaling, stretching or resting with your eyes closed. Taking the time re-connect with yourself helps to clear your mind, reset your thoughts and intentions for the moment and day and rejuvenate. This is one of the key principles in Ayurveda that will help you thrive.
- Connect with others. Physical hugs are so valuable! While online communities do play a significant role these days, also ensure you are making eye contact with the grocery clerk, engaging conversation with your neighbor, giving out hugs! Other examples: setting an intention of charitable giving for the season for even more incentive to save, or getting donating time in your community.
- An attitude of gratitude. It has been shown that when we focus on what we are grateful for, we are happier. Even better if we write it down, say it out loud, or share our positive thoughts with someone else.
Once we can slow down and embrace the opportunity to re-set and re-align, being mindful about creating habits, we will thrive, as does nature.
Michelle Boss is a Personal Finance Coach and Certified Financial Education Instructor. She is certified through the NFEC. As a Professional Money Coach, Michelle helps successful women get smart with money so they can grow their wealth and finally feel financially secure. With Michelle’s Group and One-to-one Coaching Sessions, she helps take the Fear out of Finances.