How to Make the Most of Shorter Fall Days
One of the telltale signs that fall is here is when the days become shorter and darker. For some, this is a favorite season, and the shorter amount of daylight isn’t a Debby Downer. But for others, shorter days can bring with them feelings of sadness, sleepiness, and even seasonal depression .
No matter where you fall on the shorter fall days spectrum, we’ve got you covered.
Keep reading to learn how to make the most of shorter fall days.
What happens when it’s fall season?
The fall season is usually defined by these seasonal patterns:
- The days become shorter.
- The temperature begins to drop.
- In some places, rainfall can increase.
- In places with colder winters, trees can change color (shades of red, orange, yellow, and brown) and lose their leaves.
5 Ways to Embrace the Shorter Days Ahead
1. Get Outside
Try setting a daily reminder on your phone to get out and go for a midday walk in the sun. If you’re not getting enough vitamin D in your daily busy schedule, you might be feeling low-energy and maybe even a little bummed out. When we absorb UVB rays from the sun, our bodies produce vitamin D, which is a crucial mood booster [2, 3].
2. Linen Swap
If you’re looking to embrace the shorter days of autumn, you can try a linen swap. Ditch the lightweight blankets and clothes of the summer for some silky soft scarves, soft flannels, woolen loungewear, and luxury bedding. It’s time to bundle up, get cozy and warm, drink hot cocoa, search for the perfect pumpkin, and cocoon yourself in super duper soft autumn linens. Here are a few ideas to get you started:
- Luxury Down Alternative Comforter - Made of soft, breathable bamboo viscose and microfiber, the Luxury Comforter repels common non-living household allergens, wicks away moisture, and is ultra plush for some seriously snuggly autumn snoozes.
- Luxury Weighted Blanket - If the shorter fall days get you down, this blanket may be for you. Deep-touch pressure stimulation technology is created by thousands of tiny glass beads evenly distributed throughout the fabric to help promote calmness and tranquility, potentially reducing feelings of anxiety and depression.
- Everyday Fleece Blanket - Another great option for the autumn chills - these blankets are made with 100% microfiber polyester, are hypoallergenic, and are designed with a fleece finish for superior softness and cleanliness. Perfect for snuggling up watching Halloween movies or sitting by a fire.
3. Shine Some Natural Light on Your Day
Natural light is more important than you might think. Light not only plays a role in your mood, but in your biological clock, too. Exposure to light can affect your sleep and circadian rhythm .
Make time to get some natural light exposure earlier in the day. That can look like a leisurely morning stroll, opening the curtains to let the sunlight trickle into your living room while you’re getting ready, or even working by a window so you're getting more exposure to sunlight. You might notice that getting this kind of light exposure may help to alleviate the midday slump we all dread.
4. Stick to a Sleep Schedule - Even on the Weekends
Sleep experts recommend getting at least 7 to 9 hours of sleep each night . If you feel groggy or unable to focus during the day, try keeping your daily sleeping and waking schedule as regular as possible, and make sure you’re getting enough sleep each night. If the shorter days are making it more difficult to wake up each morning, you can also try:
- Setting an earlier bedtime
- Unplugging at least 30 minutes before bed (that means no laptop, tv, or cell phone)
- Avoiding late-night snacking
- Avoiding caffeine later in the day or sugary drinks before bed
- Putting your phone on silent mode
- Moving your alarm clock across the room so you can’t hit snooze
5. Do Something Just for You
Autumn is the perfect season to catch up on some quality “you” time. What is it that you need to do some catching up on? What are some things you’ve been aching to try but just never got around to? Here are a few suggestions:
- Explore some new or favorite recipes to try. Shop at the local farmer’s market to find produce that is in season.
- Spend a Saturday afternoon or Sunday morning compiling a list of fall season reading to complete. Skip tv, make a pot of tea or coffee, snuggle up in your Luxury Weighted Blanket, and pick up a good book. Sit by the window to soak in more sunshine while you read.
- When was the last time you decluttered the house? Decluttering might sound dreary, but tidying up can boost your mood and make more time for the things that are meaningful to you . Less stuff brings more clarity and more appreciation for the things that matter. So, ask yourself, what are the things in your home that bring you joy, and what are the things that don’t?
- Relish in the slowness of the fall season, and slow down. Have a pet? Snuggle up on the couch with them and a warm blanket and make a cozy afternoon out of drinking your favorite fall beverage and watching a movie. Have a partner? Do the same.
- Become more mindful this fall season. Practice some five-minute meditation in your day-to-day to stay grounded. Find small ways to enjoy the little tasks you have to accomplish in your daily routine. Do you have dishes to wash? Sing a tune while you scrub. Do you have a dog to walk? Bring along a pair of headphones to listen to your favorite podcast.
- Drop a couple of drops of essential oil into a diffuser and relax in the sweet scents of the fall season.
- Start decorating your home for fall with some cozy string lights or white candles. Keep it light, airy, soft, and sweet.
- Join a class you’ve always wanted to try. Yoga, dance, art, anything that calls to you.
Ready to start shopping for those cozy fall home essentials? Click here to start shopping!
What are some ways you beat the autumn blues and embrace the shorter days? Let us know in the comments below! The Cosy community always loves hearing from you.
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- Anderson, J. L., Rosen, L. N., Mendelson, W. B., Jacobsen, F. M., Skwerer, R. G., Joseph-Vanderpool, J. R., Duncan, C. C., Wehr, T. A., & Rosenthal, N. E. (1994). Sleep in fall/winter seasonal affective disorder: effects of light and changing seasons. Journal of psychosomatic research, 38(4), 323–337. https://doi.org/10.1016/0022-3999(94)90037-x.
- Sue Penckofer, Joanne Kouba, Mary Byrn & Carol Estwing Ferrans (2010) Vitamin D and Depression: Where is all the Sunshine?, Issues in Mental Health Nursing, 31:6, 385-393, DOI: 10.3109/01612840903437657.
- Nair, R., & Maseeh, A. (2012). Vitamin D: The “sunshine” vitamin. Journal of Pharmacology and Pharmacotherapeutics, 3(2), 118–126. https://doi.org/10.4103/0976-500X.95506.
- Marie Dumont, Catherine Beaulieu, Light exposure in the natural environment: Relevance to mood and sleep disorders, Sleep Medicine, Volume 8, Issue 6, 2007, Pages 557-565, ISSN 1389-9457, https://doi.org/10.1016/j.sleep.2006.11.008.
- Cassata, C. (2019, January 30). Tidying up like Marie Kondo is good for you. Healthline. Retrieved from https://www.healthline.com/health-news/why-tidying-up-like-marie-kondo-is-good-for-your-health-and-your-wallet.
- Max Hirshkowitz, Kaitlyn Whiton, Steven M. Albert, Cathy Alessi, Oliviero Bruni, Lydia DonCarlos, Nancy Hazen, John Herman, Paula J. Adams Hillard, Eliot S. Katz, Leila Kheirandish-Gozal, David N. Neubauer, Anne E. O’Donnell, Maurice Ohayon, John Peever, Robert Rawding, Ramesh C. Sachdeva, Belinda Setters, Michael V. Vitiello, J. Catesby Ware, National Sleep Foundation’s updated sleep duration recommendations: final report, Sleep Health, Volume 1, Issue 4, 2015, Pages 233-243, ISSN 2352-7218, https://doi.org/10.1016/j.sleh.2015.10.004.