For some, autumn is a favourite time of year, and they need no encouragement to enjoy the season of mists and mellow fruitfulness. For others, though, autumn is the slow slide into the short days, long, dark nights and miserable weather that make the winter so difficult to endure.
Today we’re taking a look at some of the ways you can stretch out your enjoyment through the autumn and stave off that low mood that the darker side of the year can bring with it.
Making the Most of the Sunlight
The days are getting shorter after the summer solstice on the 21st of June but you really start to feel that difference in September, and especially after the end of October when the clocks go back. On top of that, clouds and rain are more common in the autumn and winter. This means you get fewer hours of sunlight and for some people that can trigger a depressive state known as seasonal affective disorder – SAD. One way to mitigate this, and bost your enjoyment of the season, is to maximise the hours of sunlight you do have access to.
Get outside for walks, gardening, exploration – whatever motivates you. If you’re stuck in an office under artificial lights , at least take your lunch outside. Boosting the number of hours you get to spend enjoying the sunlight shows you the better side of autumn and helps keep that low mood at bay.
If you need more of a structure for a walk, you might try a scavenger hunt – modern scavenger hunts are rooted in narrative and local history and can be a great focus for a day out, especially with kids. Even familiar places can be transformed: as the backdrop for a scavenger hunt Bristol comes alive in a whole new way, even to long term residents.
Autumn is especially thick with traditional reminders of the passing of the season, from traditions around the harvest – not just harvest festivals but traditions rooted deeper in folklore like making corn dollies and ‘hollaing largesse’. There’s Halloween and Guy Fawkes Night, and more modern traditions as well – how many people anticipate the arrival of Starbucks’ Pumpkin Spice Latte every year?
A good way to really enjoy the season to grab hold of these festivals and traditions. Explore the unique and wonderful things you can do in the autumn, rather than missing the things you’ve lost from the summer.