September races in, pushing us to a starting line. We launch eagerly into new commitments and rededicate ourselves to routine. Yet, along with the excitement of what is to come, we may also experience nostalgia, and sometimes anxiety for what we leave behind. While it is a time of new beginnings, it is also a time of letting go and release. For me, September has always felt profound in this way, offering both a time for change and reconnection; good-bye and hello, transition and transformation. In short, autumn is a masterful teacher of change and transition.
Nature consistently demonstrates the Law of Change. Change happens everywhere and with everyone...and it is happening constantly. Everything is in the process of becoming something else. We know that the natural order of things is not sameness, but change. We can see this easily in the life cycle of plants and seasons, as spring buds turn into leaves that then evolve from summer green to autumn gold before they fade and fall to the winter earth.
Seasonal changes are something we rely on and even look forward to. Yet we spend a lot of energy trying to resist change in our own lives. But the truth is, nothing ever stays the same. And this truth often stimulates a natural response of anxiety and discomfort. It certainly does for me.
WHILE INEVITABLE, CHANGE IS NOT ALWAYS WELCOME
Change and transition are difficult for most of us. Self-initiated or not, change moves us through a transition zone which often creates a sense of groundlessness. It can be unsettling, even scary, to be in this in-between state of letting go of what we've known, to allow for something new to emerge.
In fact, to stay in our comfort zones, many of us even resist or suppress our own longing for change. Instead, we spend a lot of energy constructing our lives... working hard to make things the way we want them... to feel safe, in control. But no matter how much planning or arranging or clinging we do to make ourselves feel secure, there will always be circumstances beyond our control.
Whether caused by a new season, a new job, moving homes, a relationship shift, or simply aging - the only thing we know for sure is that constant change is the norm. And, however challenging, resisting necessary growth for too long will eventually break you down, make you sick, or if you’re lucky, just force you forward ungracefully. It is simply healthier, on so many levels, to go with the flow of change rather than to inhibit it.
In fact, according to yoga and Ayruveda, our well being is dependent on our ability to change. Our very survival is based on our ability to continually evolve.
Flowing through this groundless state takes skill, dedication, and courage. There is no one way, or correct way to go through change. The main thing is to reorient ourselves daily - to the ever new now - the new season, the new day, the new moment, the new breath.
I use an array of tools and practices to help myself stay grounded while I flow forward with change, and I have a special toolbox for when I'm feeling anxious about it. These include specific yoga and meditation practices, mindfulness, conscious relaxation, listening to music, journaling, breath work and, of course, spending time in nature (especially with my dog, Sunday!)
MOVE MORE GRACEFULLY THROUGH TRANSITION AND CHANGE
In my Practice Now section (see below) I offer you three short video practices to help you feel more in step with the change, rather than being dragged down by or resisting it.
If you'd like a more extensive practice I created a BRAND NEW show Yoga for Anxiety presented by Yoga Anytime. You will receive a 30-Day Trial Membership (New Customers) on YogaAnytime by using the promo code PRANSKY when you sign-up at http://bit.ly/33afpUb
May you enjoy these practices all season long and at any other time you find yourself navigating change, transition, or anxiety this year.
Simple 4 Minute practice to help you feel centered, back in the present moment.
Let your whole body remember how to find a balance between being rooted and fluid, simultaneously with this unique version of Tree Pose.
Practice all or any of these three simple restorative poses to feel replenished all season.
May you enjoy these short pauses throughout the entire autumn season, and at any other time you find yourself navigating change, transition, or anxiety this year.