Fall – The Season for Change & Letting Go
“ONE OF THE HARDEST LESSONS IN THE LIFE IS LETTING GO. CHANGE IS NEVER EASY. WE FIGHT TO HOLD AND WE FIGHT TO LET GO.” – unknown
Change. It’s everywhere, and fall is nature’s biggest display. In Minnesota, the leaves turn from greens to soft yellows and deep reds, the air becomes crisp and cool, and all you want to eat is soup- or at least I do. As much as I associate fall with warm sweaters and hot cider, this season makes reminds me of change and makes me reflect on on my attachments.
Fall brings me to one of favorite pieces of yoga philosophy; aparigraha. This word means non attachment or non hoarding. This word is apart of the eight limbed yoga path and appears in the first limb which is composed of five morals/rules to live life by. These rules are called the yamas, and aparigraha is the fifth and final one.
When I practice aparigraha- I have to ask myself two questions. The first is what am I currently attached to? The second is what can I let go of?
It makes sense that we get attached to the good things in life, and aparigraha refers to us not only being attached to physical materials but also certain experiences and emotions. I like to write out my attachments and start with something as small as my Apple watch to larger materials like my home. I also reflect upon emotional attachments like feeling financially secure to having a planned out path. After I write these down, I transition onto the second part and think about what I need to let go of.
Think about what you need to shed. Just like the list above, you can start with your materials. Clean out a closest or start a pile for donations. Clearing out space and giving things you don’t need to others is a great start to letting go and can trigger some of the more emotional aspects.
Next, ask yourself what do you give unnecessary time and energy to? What emotions do you let play into your head, what causes you anxiety and stress?
Right now, I need to shed fear and guilt. These emotions are rooted from anxiety, and at an intellectual level, I understand that putting energy into these emotions is a waste of my time and energy, but it’s hard to let them go.
Finding a way to let go of these emotions is key, and I find my blog offers me a place to work through these things and hopefully connect with others that may be experiencing something similar.
Once you figure out what these emotions are, now you can work with them. Find a way to express them, an outlet if you will. This could an activity like journaling, or a ritual like meditation, chanting, or affirmations. I also recommend something physical like yoga, or starting a project or creating art.
Just like the fall trees, we need to shed. It’s a cycle that has to happen, and I think fall is the best time to dig into your attachments and really let go. I post about something personal every week on my blog- sometimes it’s a bit heavy like this, sometimes it’s light and fluffy. I hope that somehow we can connect or relate, so feel free to drop me a line here if anything resonates with you.
Additional resources on aprigraha/change