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  • Writer's pictureMartha Calihan MD


I have been contemplating the concept of “Release” recently. This comes in part, I think, because we are headed into fall, and in part from the work I was presenting in the workshop in Ireland that was focused on the Wisdom in Becoming Elder.

 To release…to let go… allow ourselves to choose to relinquish things. Things that we realize we no longer need, things that are no longer serving us, things that we can not take with us in the next phase of our journeys.

This might be metaphor, it might be literal, but the concept is the same.

Fall is a time of year when in fact, the natural world so beautifully demonstrates this concept of release. Just consider a tall tree, fully leafed all summer, that now will start the process of pulling back. Its leaves will change color and then drop. The tree releases the leaves; the energy of the tree needs to be put where the need is, and that is in pulling back and getting ready for the cold winter ahead. The tree, in releasing it’s leaves, is allowing itself to be strong and be able to survive the next phase of its life.

And what about us? What can we learn from watching the natural world as we head into fall? I think this is an opportunity for us to reflect on our own lives; to consider what we are doing, where we are headed and what we really want to be doing. How do we want to show up at this point in our lives? What is important to us? What is it that really matters?

And what are we carrying that we could release? These could be things, commitments, relationships, any number of things. Is carrying these things with us really in each of our highest and best interest? Or are there perhaps things that we can, and should release? How might we chooses to be as we consider the upcoming winter; the time to rest and restore, to plant seeds for the future, to dream and create?

The transition into Fall, and watching the natural world make their changes to prepare for the winter ahead, is a good time for us to reflect on where we are in our lives and what we might want to release to be more in alignment with what really serves us.

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