Ten tips for Autumn Self Care

Ten tips for Autumn Self Care

Autumn seems to be here, the weather is getting cooler and the nights longer and darker. It’s time to stay indoors more and get cosy in the evenings, whether we like it or not!

 I do love this time of year, the beautiful colours make up for the more frequent wind and rain, but I do find I’m affected by the lack of sunlight, especially when the clocks go back at the end of October.

One in 20 adults in the UK suffers from Seasonal Affective Disorder, depression and low mood caused by the lack of natural light. This figure rises as we get older, with nearly 6% of the over 60’s suffering from SAD.

The key is awareness, and I’m sure it’s no coincidence that World Mental Health Day is on 10th October each year.

So let’s look at some natural ways to help:

Wrap up warm and get outside

A mindful walk in the woods, taking time really absorb ourselves in our surroundings works wonders for both our physical and mental health. Try this simple exercise to focus on one sense at a time:

~ As you walk, look around and really notice what’s around you and appreciate its beauty. The colours of autumn, the leaves changing colour, the way the low sun shines through and makes everything look brighter.

~ Stand still for a moment, close your eyes and focus on what you can hear. The rustling of the leaves, animals and birds, distant traffic. Be really still and quiet and pick out the individual sounds.

~ Look around for different textures, notice them or touch them. Rough bark, dry leaves, wet stones.

~ Take a deep breath and see if you can smell anything. A deep breath of that lovely cool fresh air always makes me glad to be alive 🙂


Exercise is well known to boost both our mood and energy levels, releasing endorphins to make us feel good. Whether that’s high impact exercise like running,  a more mindful exercise like some gentle Yoga or something in between, its all good for us on many different levels. If you can exercise outside its a bonus, and an extra dose of vitamin D!

Feed the mind with new knowledge

Autumn is a great time to take on some new learning, whether that’s going out to attend a college course or online study. Learning something new is a good way to take away the Autumn blues and stimulate the brain, give us some new interests and maybe some new friends too.

Get crafty and creative

Anything we can do which gets us feeling creative is well known to be good for our mental health, I know I got through lockdown by learning to knit socks! Drawing, painting, playing music, paper craft, mosaics, sewing, cross stitch, the list is endless. Finding one you like can be so good for the mood as the nights draw in.

Find a bingeworthy box set

Shower, PJs and cosy socks on, big mug of hot chocolate and a good box set, perfect for a rainy Autumn evening!

Do some baking

There’s something about the smell of baking in the house that stimulates the happy hormones. I can’t pretend I love the actual baking, but that cuppa with a still warm muffin straight out of the oven is bliss 🙂

Have a pampering bath

Light some candles, get your best bath products out and have a lovely soak with some relaxing music and a nice drink. Pamper yourself and love your skin. Or why not try an Aromatherapy blend, 6-8 drops of essential oil in a bath is plenty as they are so concentrated. Try these lovely warming, relaxing blends:

Frankincense and Ylang Ylang (sleep potion!)

Lavender and Chamomile (gentle and relaxing)

Geranium and Bergamot (balancing and uplifting)

Immerse yourself in a good book

Dark and twisty thriller or gentle romance, anything where you can immerse yourself in someone else’s story for a little while is great for the winter evenings.

Try some meditation

Meditation is a lovely way to calm the mind and find some focus and clarity. If you find it difficult there are some lovely apps to help you, try Headspace or Calm. I find guided meditation (with someone talking) so much easier than just sitting, and regular practice really is good for you.

Start a gratitude journal

Journalling before you go to bed about all the small moments of joy that have happened in your day is not just a lovely exercise to send you to sleep feeling happy and positive, it makes you look for the little moments even more. I saw a Facebook post that’s doing the rounds at the moment, I thought it was lovely so if you didn’t see it , it’s here:

© Carol Bailey 2023

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