Four autumn lessons... from PUMPKINS?! YES.
The official first day of FALL is just a few days away, and if you’re like me, the changing of the seasons brings many things: magic, reflection, transition, and a sneaky sense of anxiety about the presence of CHANGE. It’s what I wrote my song “Seasons Change” about:
Funny the way it goes
Suddenly, with no warning
Funny you never notice
The seasons change.
As I’ve gotten older, the awareness of time (and it’s seemingly constant acceleration) puts a spotlight on our choices, fears, and dreams. Summer’s nearly over, did I go on that camping trip? Finish that project? Write that book? Tackle that home/yard/garage project? Did I even go SWIMMING this summer?? The days have flown by, and it’s easy to start feeling like we’re somehow behind. Like we’re running late. Like we’re in a constant hurry.
Can you relate?
Here’s my secret to overcoming this feeling (coming from someone who literally DESPISES change): look to nature.
I learned this from a tea bag. No joke. My favorite tea is Echinacea Plus by Traditional Medicinals (side note - how can we get them to sponsor me?!) and a staple of their branding is to print a meaningful quote on the tags of their tea bags. Riana calls them "Tea Wishes." I’ve gotten this quote so many times; it’s a famous one that’s so simple but has really stuck with me:
“Nature does not hurry, yet everything is accomplished.”
Looking to nature can yield some insightful and inspiring lessons if we push pause long enough to really take notice. Here are four of the lessons I’ve learned just from walking around my neighborhood the past few days, obviously written as metaphors because the intrinsic songwriter in me just can’t help it:
1. Be A Tree.
Right now I see strong, resilient, beautiful trees, preparing to say goodbye to their leaves without really knowing if they will grow back. That must be an incredibly uncomfortable feeling, yet they embrace it gracefully with courage and with hope. They trust that when the time comes, new leaves will grow. And we, like trees, must find our own courage to shed OUR leaves, and trust that our strength now will make space for beautiful new things to grow.
2. Be A Squirrel.
I love squirrels. Squirrels don’t let anything bother them, they have a one-track mind completely dedicated to gathering seeds and nuts. Focus on gathering what’s important to you, and paying no mind to what doesn’t serve you.
3. Be A Spider.
I walked into like six spiderwebs this week, and of course freaked out pawing at my face like a total doofus. There’s about four or five outside the front door right now. Every day or two I’ll take a broom and try to sweep them up and let them go in the woods, and SURE ENOUGH!! The next morning they’re BACK! You GOTTA appreciate the resilience and the hustle. Like a spider, don’t spend time mourning your broken webs. Stay resilient, and keep creating.
4. Be A Pumpkin.
This time of year, pumpkins magically start showing up everywhere. Pumpkin Spice Lattes. Pumpkin Harvest Candles. Pumpkin Beer. Be a pumpkin, and start showing up on your neighbor’s front steps. (Not literally speaking, of course—metaphorically!) How can you show up and be present for your neighbors? Your friends? Your family? Your community? Be a pumpkin and show up everywhere.
From your favorite Tree-Squirrel-Spider-Pumpkin-loving songwriter, I hope this wasn’t too far out for you! If this was helpful, I’d love to hear back from you.
What are the lessons YOU'RE learning from nature? I bet there are some great ones that I’m missing. Send me an email and let me know! :)