Autumn is here and we are well served by tuning into the changing season. When we acknowledge the shifts and changes in nature, we align with the ancient wisdom of cycles and rhythms.
I know that many people lament the end of summer. I feel the bittersweetness of this time, too! But since I’m committed to an embodied practice of cyclic living, I accept the transition and have rituals to support this.
This is why I’m sharing 7 Autumn Rituals to Reset Your Energy & Re-Ignite Your Creativity, divided into the areas of Body, Home, and Soul.
1. Eat seasonally and locally.
Honour the season by eating foods that are available where you live – from your garden, the market or your neighbours. We now live in a world where a lot of the food we consume is imported from other areas and in artificial conditions that defy the seasons. Seek out local!
Autumn is the harvest season and there are many kinds of fresh produce like vegetables, fruit, berries, etc. Consider what is growing in your climate. Figs, apples, pears, peaches? For those in a climate where root vegetables are grown, there are beets, carrots, and parsnips. Cucurbits like squash, zucchini and pumpkins are ripening fast.
All of the foods that we eat now are actually positioning our bodies to be ready for winter. We can attune to this seasonal change by the subtle act of adding these locally grown foods to our meals. A veggie bake. An apple pie. All good cues to our endocrine system to pay attention.
Our grandparents and ancestors lived and thrived on locally grown food, and relied on preserving in storage with vinegar and honey. I believe we have become too reliant on imported foods. These new options have disrupted our dietary needs and created unstable food systems. Get back to basics in this season of abundance.
2. Take a ritual bath.
A ritual bath can be a chance to experience the soothing properties of water. Plan for a time when you will not be disturbed or ask your family to give you the privacy you need and deserve. Put a Do Not Disturb sign on the door. Light some candles, perhaps play some music, or add milk powder or skin-safe essential oils. You can add herbs or flower petals easily by filling a muslin bag or use a tea sachet. No mess left in the bathtub!
Always consider what goes in the water – oil, scent or salt also goes into your body. If you work with crystals, leave them nearby and not in the water unless you are absolutely sure they are water safe.
A tip I recommend is that if you want to use this as a meditation for letting go and a ritual of release, then stay in the tub while the water drains. Use that visual and visceral experience to make an end to your ritual. It is a very interesting experience to go from the buoyancy of the water and, as you hold your intention of Letting Go, let the energy release down the drain and become transmuted by Mother Earth.
You can also infuse your bath water with a sacred intention or a prayer that you are holding and visualize the water meeting and mingling with the waters of your area.
Also, since we all have busy lives, if you only have time for a quick shower or just a face rinse, do it with the mindset of ritual. If we bring our attention and our full presence into it, the simplest action can be a ritual cleanse.
3. Go to bed earlier.
Start by going to bed a little earlier each night as the days are naturally becoming shorter with the turning of the Wheel of the Year. Honour the shorter days by getting more sleep.
At summer solstice where I live, it is bright until past 10pm. I am often stretching my energy by staying up late. I feel like I should still be up! Now that autumn is here and evening comes sooner, I can get into bed and get my rest.
For those with kids, back to school and early morning routines can feel hectic after a more relaxed summer schedule. So in general it’s a benefit to feel rested so we can face the morning, and our children, with patience and good energy.
4. Cleaning and decluttering.
Spring cleaning is great, and an autumn cleaning can feel so good, too! Right now, think about a space in your home that needs to be decluttered and cleaned. It does not need to be an entire room, it could be your linen closet or the junk drawer. Whenever we clean or declutter, we can bring the mindset of Letting Go into our practice.
You can also do a conjure floor sweep. Prepare a small bowl of salt, baking soda, and herbs, sprinkle them on the floor, and do an intentional ‘witchy’ sweep of it all out the back door.
5. Celebrate Autumn’s beauty.
I love decorating my front door and porch with autumn colours of yellow, orange reds and browns. We have Thanksgiving in October in Canada, which is a great opportunity to create a table centrepiece or mantle bouquet. I create a display on my table of small pumpkins, apples, gourds, acorns and candles. I put autumn leaves on my altar.
Perhaps you want to display your garden harvest. Or put dried corn husks and a scarecrow at the end of your driveway.
Do whatever it is that inspires you and helps you bring the beauty and bounty of autumn into your home.
6. Let Go.
Working with the seasonal energy of falling away, take time to consider what it is you want to let go of? It doesn’t have to be negative, it could simply be something that is coming to its natural end.
Here are some guidelines: Intuitively feel what element is drawing you in right now. Water? Fire? Earth? Air? Consider creating a ritual around the element that inspires you. For example a ritual with Earth might find you going outdoors somewhere in nature. Write a letter of everything you want to let go of and bury it in the ground. Or speak your intentions into the ground or the roots of a tree. Give it to the Earth.
You can do the same thing with water or fire. Whatever or however you choose to work your magic you can use your element to transmute it in release.
7. Reactivate your creative energy.
It’s so important to give ourselves creative time. Think about it– do you want to get back into painting or writing or dancing or knitting? Maybe there’s a class you want to take.
Find a time in the day or the week to devote to your creative impulses. Or perhaps, since you’ll be going to bed earlier, you can get up earlier and start your day with a creativity power hour.
Hold yourself accountable by telling someone. Put it on the wall calendar or in your daytimer. Honour your creativity and the inherent value in learning, practicing, and trying something new.
Autumn is a time of transition, and it’s the perfect opportunity to set some new rituals for yourself that will help you reset your energy, re-ignite your creativity, and get you in rhythm with the season.
Which suggestion are you most inspired to try? Let me know in the comments!
And if you are looking for a CEREMONY to celebrate the Autumn Equinox, you’re invited to EarthSong Temple’s Wheel of the Year Ceremonies, which are free and online.