With the Change of Seasons, We Learn the Gentle Art of Letting Go




Fall has come. Every year the change of seasons happens so gradually that it’s hard to notice the transition. One morning you open your eyes and the world outside looks completely different. The pinks, whites, and reds are gone, and the skies are bursting with new colors.

While flowers start to fade and begin to settle in for a long winter sleep, the trees are taking center stage. They are bursting with colors from deep reds, to vibrant oranges, bright yellows, and even majestic purples.

Fall-Leaves-Arturo-Castaneyra- (1)Have you ever taken the time to stand in awe of the sprawling canopy of one of these majestic beauties, noticing its dark, mysterious leaves? Those small, magnificent colored leaves take up a lot of space: giving the trees their personality and beauty.

leafOr, have you ever been struck speechless at the sight of a yellow elm tree aglow in the sunlight, almost like it’s on fire?

Fall Trees


After a few weeks of these wondrous trees showing their glorious colors, the leaves begin to drop. Slowly at first, one, two, three. And then suddenly, there seem to be leaves everywhere. If you have one of these gigantic beauties in your yard, you know how many leaves a tree can hold. It seems you rake them for weeks!

In the rhythm of life, it is necessary for the tree to drop its leaves. This is part of its natural cycle. The tree is preparing for a long winter rest. Winter is about waiting, resting, and reflecting. In the depths of winter, through harsh winds and cold temperatures, the tree stands tall and strong. It is waiting through the cold months to burst forth again with new life.



Steppeland-Lutgarde-De-BrouwerWhen fall fades, and winter approaches, I see these stately trees, naked, bare, and alone: left only with their body and form. Vulnerable, yet strong. These trees portray strength and dignity. Even in their winter slumber, they represent life.

Even during its long winter rest, the tree is living, breathing, and full of possibilities.

Even as it shudders against the harsh winds and heavy snowfall, it is still strong.

Susanna-MarsigliaEven with its bare branches, it shows a new sort of beauty.

Without its adorning leaves, it now shows its true self.

And so it is with you: living, full of possibilities, strong, beautiful . . . . .

Yes, the rhythm of life teaches us there is a season to let go.

You also have leaves to shed.


Pains, sorrows, fears, judgment, prejudices, anger, control, losses, tragedies. . . .

These are your leaves. Your branches are full of these past experiences, each a different color. Together, they create a canopy of the expression of who you are. Or who you were. Your experiences. There are times when your leaves take center stage. But sometimes they cover who we really are deep inside. In their time, each past experience had life, but now is a memory, ready to fall as the leaves from the trees around you do.


Fall is a lovely reminder to let go. Gently, one by one, slowly release these past pains and experiences and allow them to fall to the earth.

Without the leaves, you might feel bare. You might feel vulnerable or exposed. You might feel like you need to hold on because that is what is familiar. You may want to hold on tight.


Begin slowly. With letting go, you make space for the new.

As you begin to let go of the past and see things with a new perspective, like the tree, you will free yourself of things that weigh you down. Carrying this extra weight can cause you anxiety, depression, or dysregulation.

Take time this fall to let go.

And just as the majestic tree, you find that you are still tall, strong, and full of life. With the leaves gone, you can better see who you really are. Others can see you for who you really are. Be proud of this beauty and strength.

But how do we let go?

Gently, and with care ~

it doesnt take a lot

Letting go might mean clearing space in your surroundings. Clear space brings a clear mind.  It might mean going through a closet and finding old clothes, or finding the furniture you no longer use. By letting go you can pass these items on to others.

Maybe it’s letting go through journaling. With each swipe of the pen you are able to release more.

Maybe it’s digging in and scrubbing and cleaning. The fresh scent and shiny surfaces will brighten your day and brighten your hopes for the future.

Maybe it’s having an imaginary envelope, box, or purse where you can mentally place the memories.

Maybe it is spending time playing with a child, noticing how, through play, something beautiful is created, and then let go. Children know they can recreate their ideas again and again, and have a new and exciting adventure each time. It may be a sandcastle, or a tower of blocks, or a picture they drew. Each is a valuable learning experience, but not a defining end.

Maybe it means going inward and finding old patterns or habits that you’re ready to release. Maybe it’s resentment, hurt, or anger that you’re ready to let go of. Maybe it is letting go of relationships or the expectations of relationships.

You may need to physically drop leaves one by one from your deck, imagining what they represent in you. Then watch each leaf softly float to the ground.

It may be just letting go of all your cares, just for the moment, so you can enjoy the beauty that surrounds you.


As you sit and watch the leaves fall from the trees, sense what you may need to release, and let it fall with the leaves. The winter months will give you rest and help free you of burdens of past pains.

Letting go can be hard. We like to hold on to the past. The past is familiar. The future is hard to imagine. But what if instead of looking at the past you looked to the future? To new experiences, relationships, hopes and dreams.

Yes, it is hard. If you find letting go painfully hard, remember you don’t have to go it alone. There is support. Just as the earth supports the tree, there is support that surrounds you.

Connect >>

If you need help through this process please talk with your doctor or find a supportive therapist trained in the area of specialty that relates to your struggles.

You may also find benefits from yoga and somatic practices. Both have been shown to help individuals in the area of trauma, anxiety, and depression. Both practices are compatible with therapy or can be also used independently as a form of self-care.

I can help you through group or one-on-one yoga classes and somatic work. These practices support healing from trauma, anxiety, and depression, and help you find peace and joy. Each yoga practice nurtures your mind and body. Through the yoga practice, you learn to relax deeply, let go, and open space for new opportunities.

I invite you to contact me for more information on how to work together in letting go or extend your self-care practices.

If you would like your school or group to learn more about the trauma you can find more information here:  https://grandrapidstraumainformed.com/trauma-informed-presentations/

Enjoy Fall!