My mind has collected so many clusters lately. They are all getting tangled together, and it's hard to seperate them. It's a mess in there and I'm blaming seasonal shifts as the culprit.

We are starting to enter into a new phase of the year, summer is beginning to fade into fall. Which is a wonderful change, full of exciting new things to be thankful for. Cooler temps are always welcome (especially here in Virginia), fall crops like all the greens and root veggies make a triumphant return, sweaters and scarves start coming to mind again, hot coffee even tastes that much better on a crisp fall day. Football is back on (for those of you who can't get enough of that sport) and Sunday dinners get bigger and turn into comfort food meals. The AC gets turned off and windows are opened, letting the outside in again. And it's almost bonfire and apple cider season. 

This shift in seasons also tends to bring on so many new thoughts, tasks, and routines, that can create overwhelming feelings and clutter in the mind. For a lot of folks it comes with back to school, which is a huge shift in day to day activity to get used to. It comes with weddings and events to attend. Starting to plan for the holidays is happening. I know the thought of "what are we going to do for thanksgiving this year" has popped into your head at least once already. Switching out summer clothes for your hidden away fall/winter wardrobe. Putting the summmer activites to rest, closing up the summer house (if you're lucky enough to have one of those), putting the pool and summer toys away. Not to mention the simple fact that you're body is getting used to a whole new environment outside. Which for a lot of people equals allergies. The list is long and goes on and on.  It's enough to clutter anyones brain. 

In our house we don't have back to school yet, but we have all that other stuff, plus this is the time of year where we start to think of all the things we need to get ready for winter. Things like did we collect enough firewood, how much more hay do we need, and are there enough frozen tomatoes. I've started thinking about pulling everything out of the garden and putting the beds to rest for the winter. Even though I'm no where near ready for those things to be gone and thinking of what is the possibility of a winter garden might be. This is also when my weaving work tends to rev up. I weave all summer long, but only here and there. Now is when I start thinking of upcoming markets and how low my stocks have become over the course of a year. 

In addition to all that normal yearly seasonal change stuff going through my head, this year I am going through a major life seasonal shift as well. I am expecting and getting ready to make the shift to motherhood my reality. That is a constant laundry list of things to do, to worry about, prepare, to figure out, to learn. Going through my day to day all the while being totally exhausted from simply concentrating on growing a new human. Not to mention that pregnancy brain is a real thing and my head is a wierd place to be right now. There is enough stuff swirling around up there to collapse anyone into a mushy mess. 

Whether you have big life shifts or simple seasonal shifts you're dealing with, how do you cope with the overwhelm? My solution is fairly simple, find relief in simple pleasures and mindful acitivites. A few easy ways to ease all that clatter, is to focus on all those great things about fall I mentioned. When you realize you are experiencing one to those moments, really focus on it, soak it in and enjoy it. Take a walk outside with a nice hot coffee or cocoa or cider, prefereably in a park or somewhere that has some greenery. There is nothing like the combo of being around green things and walking that naturally eases the mind. Make a physical list of your to do's and check things off. Writing things down allows your brain to stop constantly thinking about it, and crossing something off of a list is so very satisfying. Find mindful activities that are calming for you. For me that has always been weaving. With this years extreme amount of clutter I have turned to the simplest of weaving tasks. Weaving an uncomplicated plain weave, in my quiet studio, with the windows open listening to the sounds of the woods. Quietly focusing on every pass of the shuttle, and every knot being tied. For you maybe its sitting on your porch with some tea and a good book, a magazine, a knitting project, or some cards for a game of solitaire. The key is finding quiet simple moments in everyday activities that you can set your focus on. Something as mundane as folding the laundry, or getting dinner ready can be a calming mindful activity.  

With seasonal shifts comes the need for a shift to simple pleasures. Finding ways to simplify and ease the mind. Especially in this current world of constant clatter, we need to focus on the little things and take the time to enjoy the moment. The seasonal clutter will always come back each year, but so will all the seasonal change benefits. Take the time to enjoy a simple moment and ease your mind.