What the fall leaves are trying to tell you

change growth mindset

Here in Minnesota, it’s the peak of the fall colors. We are very proud of our beautifully colored fall leaves, so much so that we have a “Fall Color Finder so you know where to go on your fall weekends to check out the best autumn leaves in the state. Right now, it’s about as good as it gets!

The change of seasons from summer to fall always gets makes me a little sad. I don’t really love the impending winter (yep, I live in the wrong state.) I’m a July baby, and I love the heat of a hot summer day. 

Fall seems to whisper “Get your snowboots ready” and “You better make the most of this 80 degree day. It might be the last one you get for six months.” It can be a little depressing.

But I’ve also learned to find the lessons that are present every autumn if I take a moment to remember them and reflect on them.

Two important lessons come to mind:

         1. The only thing constant in life is change. 

Part of what makes fall so beautiful is its ability to teach us profound lessons about the ever-changing nature of life. It's like a wise friend reminding us that embracing change is the key to progress. As temperatures drop, nights become longer, and trees gracefully shed their leaves, nature orchestrates a gentle transformation, marking the beginning of a new chapter in its story.

When we look at those bare trees and somber skies, it can be natural to feel a sense of loss or impending doom, like things are taking a turn for the worse. However, it's important to realize that without the fall season, we wouldn't have the joy of spring and the warmth of summer to look forward to. Nature willingly embraces this temporary dormancy, knowing it's a necessary part of the renewal process for the coming spring.

When we can take a moment and think about this, we discover valuable lessons for our own lives. We learn that not all changes are inherently positive, and many times, they bring along challenges and discomfort. Yet, it's through accepting these new phases in our lives that we grow and develop. Each change, even those that initially seem negative, ultimately contributes to our improvement and growth.

Even when faced with adversity, change acts as a catalyst, prompting us to reevaluate our values and perspectives. It's like a personal growth journey that helps us become better versions of ourselves. So, just like nature gracefully transitions through seasons, we too can navigate life's changes with grace and resilience, knowing that they hold the potential for our own growth and development.

         2. The Power of Letting Go

I’m not a huge fan of big change. I like predictability. I like constancy. I look back longingly on days that are in the rearview mirror, and I sometimes get nervous about what the future holds. Even as a child, someone once asked me my biggest fear, and I said “change.” It really did scare me.

The fall season offers us an important reminder of the importance of releasing what belongs to the past. It's the time when trees shed their leaves, a process that's both sorrowful and beautiful, painful and necessary, even somewhat morbid, but ultimately, it's an inevitable part of nature's cycle. 

Every autumn, nature undergoes this rather sad and melancholic transition, bidding farewell to its vibrant summer self. Yet, it does so without dwelling on regrets and grasping the past, but instead seems to fully welcome the change. 

This can be such a powerful lesson. If we're unable to let go of what's behind us and become entangled in the past, our personal growth comes to a standstill, and we find ourselves trapped in a state of inertia. We can’t move forward when we are fixated on the past.

So, as we observe the leaves falling, we're reminded that change, though often accompanied by a mix of emotions, is the path to progress. Just like nature gracefully embraces the shift, we can navigate life's transitions with a sense of acceptance, knowing that it's through these changes that we grow and evolve.