Tips for Renewing Your Mind This Fall
Posted: August 25th, 2021
Fall has long been one of my favourite seasons, from the promise of a new school year to the beauty of trees changing colours to the family gatherings. For many, autumn also brings increased activity and a drive to end the year strong after the dog days of summer. As the pandemic lingers, this fall will have unique pressures and challenges. But if we carefully guard our physical, mental and spiritual health, we can thrive in this season.
Consider the following tips for renewing your mind this fall:
Cultivate your relationship with God daily.
Spend quality time reading the Word, praying and reflecting on what God is teaching you. Then, when you feel weak and inept, remember that God’s strength is made perfect in our weakness. We just need to ask Him to guide and assist us in whatever tasks He’s given us to do.
Spend time in nature.
Nature has been called God’s second book. Beyond the health benefits of fresh air and sunshine is the positive impact on our mental health. As you admire the sights and sounds of creation, it will give you a sense of awe at God’s power. If He could speak the universe into existence, nothing is impossible for Him.
Take time to rest.
We live in a culture that celebrates overwork; however, when we don’t take time to refill our cups, we have nothing to give others. Setting boundaries is a must for mental health. Regularly schedule time for personal and family needs to avoid burnout, give your body and mind time to rejuvenate and ultimately be more productive.
Live in community.
God has provided people to accompany us in this life, whether spouses, children, other family members or friends. In Galatians 6:2, Paul said, “Carry each other’s burdens, and in this way you will fulfill the law of Christ” (NIV). So invest in loving relationships with your family and broader community.
If you’re feeling especially burdened, don’t keep it to yourself. Instead, speak to a trusted friend, pastor or other clergy or professional counsellor for objective feedback. Also, journal to clarify what’s stressing you, why and put your stressors in proper context.
Engage in stimulating activities.
Stimulate your brain through hobbies, travel, service or continued education. Remember – you are never too old to learn or experience new things. Not only will you be happier if you enthusiastically pursue a range of activities, you just may lengthen your days!
Take care of your body.
There is a strong connection between physical and mental health. Reap cognitive and emotional benefits by following health principles such as
- getting enough sleep (7-9 hours a night recommended),
- exercising regularly (30 minutes, five times a day recommended),
- and drinking adequate water (e.g., 8 eight-ounce glasses daily).
Diet is especially critical. For optimal physical and mental health, follow a diet heavy on fruits and vegetables, especially dark green leafy vegetables, nuts, beans, legumes and whole grains.
Finally, keep Psalm 28:7 (NIV) in your heart to give you peace whatever this fall brings.
"The LORD is my strength and my shield;
in him my heart trusts, and I am helped;
my heart exults, and with my song I give thanks to him."