The Autumnal Equinox is a season not only centered around the changing seasons but also around bringing in a time of rest and replenishment.
By using this transitional season students can take advantage of the slowness and restfulness it creates to slow down their lives and reflect on the past year.
The Equinox occurred on Sept. 22. This date signified the northern hemisphere being lit up for 12 hours, while the Southern hemisphere was in darkness for 12 hours, according to Professor Varsha Kulkarni, a professor of physics and astronomy.
During this time of change, it is vital to prioritize the way the transition into the colder months can affect us.
"This is a time when we gather all the light that we can for those darker days that are coming, and so it's really important to go within, to rest, to allow your body heal," Lauren Brandstadter, a licensed New York massage therapist and medium, said. "You have to catch yourself, change the neural pathway and put something positive on that action of resting ... and gear yourself up for that time of healing."
A conscious effort to make time for healing and resting can improve one's inward and outward perspective. With an active effort for healing and resting, one can avoid anxiety-producing moments.
Such anxiety-producing moments could appear as worrying too much about the future and failing to live in the current day. Taking the time for oneself to minimize the anxiety that can accompany the changing seasons is an important mindfulness technique that can produce an improved Equinox season.
One tactic discussed to prioritize self-care is meditation. Mastering this practice during a time of transition can create the groundwork for quieting the mind and taking time for recharging.
"You can literally have something that stops the chatter or the overthinking, because anxiety is living too far in the future," Brandstadter said. "So ground yourself."
With grounding oneself comes a feeling of stillness, which is another sensation created during the Equinox as explained by Margeaux House, yoga instructor and Mindful Movement Guide for the activewear clothing line Athleta Well.
"It is more of a time of building things, to like letting them go," House said. "Listening to nature, anything that can get you outside and just taking in the sunlight, but then also maybe being aware of the darkness."
Not only is it important to feel still and calm during these moments, but also to find a community of people who can offer support during a time of change. A community creates an environment filled with purpose and concern for each other. It is recommended to find these people during the Equinox.
Meditation during a season of change is especially important for college students. The exhaustion that accompanies using one's brain all day is immense and can produce unproductive thoughts.
According to Brandstadter, it is our thoughts that create our reality. The season of the Autumnal Equinox can help in repairing unhealthy thoughts and clean up the areas of our lives that do not fulfill us anymore.
Finding a practice, such as creating affirmations or meditations, and continuing it throughout the Equinox can yield a positive change for the thoughts created throughout the day.
"As long as you have a practice and you do something every day," Brandstadter said. "You have a ritual that helps keep you balanced throughout the day ... if you started off on a really positive note, being grateful and taking good care of yourself, then the rest of the day will be cake."
Finding a community that supports and uplifts is also important to bring oneself back to the center of being. Listening to your inner voice and having conversations to reflect, recharge and setting intentions can be helpful in a time of planting the seeds of growth for the summer season to harvest.
Being present during seasons of change and chaos can be difficult, but it is vital to prioritize oneself amidst transition periods. Taking part in simple practices such as meditation and mindfulness can prove to improve one's mental health and help to stay more grounded. The Equinox not only can bring about a changing season of weather, but also a change in one's perspective.