Autumn is a time of contemplation, a time to be still

You are not the only one feeling sad and tired

Sat, 10/05/2019 - 10:15am

Many of us have noticed there is less daylight time, giving us shorter days to be outdoors. 

Darkness arrives sooner on our doorstep.

A number of us might be feeling sad.

Some of us feel they don’t have the energy they had during the summer months.

Others are questioning themselves, wondering if perhaps they are depressed. 

I heard a friend say, “I feel older all of a sudden.” “I don’t feel as happy as I did in the summer.”

What has changed to make people feel this way? 

These thoughts reflect the changing of seasons. We are leaving the exciting and playful summer and entering the quiet autumn. The warmth of summer is exiting and the cooler temperatures of autumn are moving in. We may have forgotten we are connected to nature and our circadian rhythm shifts with seasons. These changes creep up on us and we wonder what is going on. 

It is a science-based fact that seasonal changes can affect our mood, energy, productivity and sleep. Our body chemistry will change, as we enter the fall season.

During her interview in The Huffington Post article, Yes, The Change in Season Really Affects your Mood, October 6, 2016, Kathryn, A. Roecklein, associate professor of psychology at the University of Pittsburgh said, “The scientific evidence says that length of day, which is shorter in the winter and longest in the summer, is the main seasonal variable that affects mood.”

There is less sunlight at this time of year and this impacts our psyche and energy level.

Cravings for carbs increase with cooler weather along with feeling less social, wanting to sleep more and experiencing fatigue. Some sense that their depression is returning. Melatonin and serotonin production change, along with body temperature and metabolism. These fluctuations might result in feeling sluggish and out of sorts.

Transitions can be a challenging. As we age, change is harder to welcome and accept. We try to make the world be the way we want it to be instead of adapting to it as it moves through its natural flow of changing seasons. 

Autumn is a time of slowing down and transitioning towards winter. It is a time to reflect on the past, think about what we have accomplished and what have we learned. It is a time to contemplate about how to move forward in life.

We can accomplish this by becoming quiet and listening within. Stillness allows us to find out about ourselves, about what we really want in life, and to get clear of our goals.

Autumn is a time of contemplation. 

A time to sit back and evaluate what you accomplished during the summer. 

A time to regroup and find balance.

A time to be still.

You are not the only one feeling the changes of the autumn season. 

Roe Chiacchio is a cardiac and pulmonary rehabilitation RN, CPT personal trainer and CDP certified dementia practitioner. She integrates her background into a specialized style of training for each of her clients and shares her perspective and knowledge in her articles published at PenBay Pilot. Her business, ONWARD, Cardiovascular Heath, Wellness and Dementia Management is located in Camden, Maine. Her education is based in behavioral science, psychology, neuroscience and gerontology studies.  Her interest is working to enhance physical performance and mental health of individuals through her training sessions and articles. Her hobbies are photography and international travel.

For more information, contact Roe at 207 249-8166, or