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A Lesson From Autumn: Letting Go and Embracing Change to Prepare for Rebirth

By October 20, 2020April 6th, 2021Blogs, Parisa Waisi, MFT

This year has been the most eventful year in many people’s lives. We are almost through with the year, and it has been a rollercoaster of emotions, stress, hope, losses, and many other things. A year of personal growth for many and a year of significant changes globally. A year that has given many people new perspectives and new ways of viewing their lives.

A lot has happened, and a lot has changed, which can derail our goals and hopes for the year. We may need to postpone or revise some of them, but we can still have goals to work on even during this time. Let us look at a few steps that have helped me in this process and might be helpful for you as well:

Step #1: Ask yourself the following questions:

–      Where am I today?

–      What worked or was helpful along the way?

–      What prevented me from achieving my goals, or what were some of the obstacles on my way?

Look at the goals or hopes you had for this year and see where you are standing regarding those goals. No matter where you stand, answering these questions and reflecting on them can help you from this point forward.

In times of crisis, it is sometimes easy to be dragged by negative thoughts into feelings of helplessness and hopelessness.  It is essential to continually remind ourselves of the positive things like the growth and little opportunities that we encountered amidst the crisis and prompt our resilience and strengths; but more importantly, it is vital to remind ourselves that no matter how far away we are from our goals, there is still hope.  We are resilient and capable of learning. By practicing and exposing ourselves to new ways of living and by facing our fears and those uncomfortable situations that we tend to avoid, we could start walking toward the destination that we have been longing for.

Step #2: Reflect and define milestones

–      Ask yourself whether the goal you had set still makes sense for you today. Is it realistic? Is it in line with your values?

–      Define your milestones, plans, and BE PRESENT!

By reflecting, we are opening ourselves to see the weaknesses and the obstacles along the way. By doing so, we can then set some new goals and write an action plan. Do not forget to take into consideration your strengths and the things that went well. Sometimes as we reevaluate our lives and our goals, we fail to include our strengths and the steps we took that helped us.  We forget the moments in our lives that positively influenced our goals and decisions. Do not forget to reconnect to those moments of inspiration that will help you in moving forward. Even little things that went well, the short moments of joy and hopefulness matter, savor them!

Practice mindfulness: This could be done during the day doing different things like taking a shower, while driving, during your break at work or school, when walking or eating, or by smelling your coffee as you are drinking it. Notice what is happening in you and be present.

Give yourself a break: Take a break from electronics at work or school and after you are done with your day. Pay attention to your breath and take deep breaths. Before you sleep, take a moment, reflect on your day, and keep a record of your little or big accomplishments of the day. There are things that you could find in your day that you could be grateful for.

Finally, let us learn from the Autumn and embrace the change…

Autumn is here again! The leaves are changing color (and some will keep their color as they are), warm drinks, the cozy long evenings, the scent of pumpkin and sandalwood candles, holiday decorations, and more.  Autumn is the season in preparation for rebirth. It reminds us that sometimes change and letting go are beautiful, we exist, and life goes on despite our challenges and losses. Autumn reminds us that change is possible and sometimes essential before starting new beginnings.