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Last Updated on September 18, 2023
Crisp air, crunchy leaves, pumpkin spice, and all things cozy n’ good…fall has a lot to offer!
But as with all changing seasons, you fall into new routines that might call for a little extra self care. Fall often comes with busy schedules, the start of school, and sometimes changes at work.
If you could use some extra slowness this autumn season, you’ve gotta try these fall self care ideas!
Oh, and especially before the winter holiday season comes and hits us in full-swing, it’s definitely wise to get into a solid self care routine so you don’t feel overwhelmed in the coming months! So let’s dive into alllllll the autumn self care and get you prepared.
What are 5 Quick Self Care Activities for the Fall?
Don’t have time to read through the full list? Here are 5 super quick self care activities to get the most out of your fall self care:
- Make yourself a hot fall drink and enjoy every sip
- Spend some time in the autumn nature
- Practice gratitude (get my printable gratitude journal to make it even easier!)
- Take a break from being productive to do fun fall things
- Make a fall vision board
Fall Self Care Challenge: 35 Feel-Good Self Care Ideas for Autumn
If you’re ready to create your own fall self care routine, you’ll love these ideas! Whether you’re leaning into cozy fall wellness, or simply challenging yourself to make self care a priority this autumn, these fall self care ideas will leave you inspired!
Don’t forget about these fall self care ideas! Pin ’em to come back later!
1. Soak up the last of the warm weather
The nice thing about fall is you (usually) get a good balance of warm and cool days. Make sure you make the most of those last warm days by getting plenty of time outdoors! Nice evening walks, reading out in the grass, and sipping a yummy drink out on the porch are all good ideas for fall self care.
2. Organize your closet to make room for fall clothes
This little action can make your life so much easier. I know I hate approaching my closet and sifting through all these summer clothes that just aren’t weather-appropriate anymore. So push those summer clothes to the back of your closet and make way for the cute fall fits!
3. Take a hike and observe the fall foliage
If you need some peace and calm in your daily routine, taking a hike on a quiet trail and observing the fall foliage can be so relaxing. The abundant colors of the changing fall leaves are always a worthwhile sight to see!
4. Make a vision board to map out the rest of the year
Once summer is over, the rest of the year can feel like a bit of a drag. But it totally doesn’t have to be! Make a fall vision board to stay inspired. Consider what goals you’d still like to achieve by the end of the year, and make them into a visual representation! I’ve got some super cool vision board ideas right here for ya.
5. Include positive affirmations in your routine
By speaking or writing out positive affirmations each day, you are actually re-training your brain to opt for positive self talk rather than negative self talk. Pretty darn cool, right?! It’s a simple way to work toward a happier mindset.
These positive affirmations are all great places to start!
- 15 Fall Affirmations to Reflect and Realign Yourself
- 110 Beauty Affirmations to Spark Confidence Inside and Out
- Affirmations for Friends: 100 Words for Closer Friendships
- 250 Peaceful Affirmations for Overthinking
I also made a deck of 40 printable affirmation cards to make affirmations super easy and fun for you. Use them as journal prompts, stick ‘em on your mirror for an everyday reminder, or get creative and turn them into a vision board or collage on your wall!
6. Take a break from being productive to do fun fall things
Whatever you do, don’t miss out on all the fall festivities as you plan your fall self care! There are so many ideas out there, you’ll be sure to find something exciting. Here’s a few fall ideas you might like:
- Bake fall treats
- Visit a pumpkin patch or apple orchard
- Drink pumpkin spice lattes or apple cider
- Buy a cute new fall outfit
- Take a hayride
- Watch spooky Halloween movies
- Decorate your home with fall decor
7. Light fall candles or aromatherapy scents
I feel like fall is just known for its yummy candle scents. I know it’s the main time of the year that I get sucked into candle shopping! If you have a diffuser, you can get your fix of delicious fall scents through essential oils too!
8. Make a list of all the happy fall things
Focusing on all the fun, positive, happy things by writing them down really puts you in a better mood! Make a list of all the things you love and look forward to about the fall season. I promise you’ll feel super excited afterward!
9. Go stargazing
Stargazing is one of those summer activities that you can (and should) totally carry over into fall, too. I love driving to an area with less light pollution so I can get the perfect clear view of all the stars.
10. Practice meditation
With all the upcoming holiday stress lurking around the corner, finding moments of calm where you can be grounded in the present moment is going to save your mental health big time.
Meditation is even known to increase your self-awareness and build stronger stress-tolerance skills, and we could all use more of that!
If you feel like your mind wanders too much when you try to meditate, I highly recommend guided meditations, like the ones I use on Headspace.
Headspace is honestly the best thing ever for beginners or anyone who’s tried meditation but struggles. They have so many good quality meditations for aaaanything you could want: for focus, sleep, stress, and more! Give ‘em a try for FREE for 14 days with my link below!
11. Splurge a little on a good quality cozy blanket
How can you have fall self care without a good cozy blanket?! A high quality blanket is a worthwhile fall investment I will never feel guilty about. It really makes those cold nights a thousand times better.
If you’re looking for quality, I highly recommend this L.L. Bean Wicked Cozy Light Blanket. It’s exactly the perfect blanket for fall because it’s not super heavy. It’s lightweight but DEFINITELY fits the bill for warm and cozy. Go grab it!
12. Go for a drive and catch the crisp autumn breeze
Bonus points if you roll the windows down. This is a nice chance to explore the fall scenery and get a breath of fresh fall air! While you’re at it, maybe drive somewhere you haven’t been to before and make it an adventure!
13. Build an indoor garden
If you’re trying to plan ahead for the winter and an outdoor garden isn’t going to be feasible where you live, you can always go for an indoor garden! It doesn’t have to be anything elaborate. Even just a few small potted plants sitting on your window sill can brighten the mood!
14. See a therapist
While self care is a GREAT skill to have, there’s really only so much you can do on your own. If you’re feeling stressed, anxious, or negative at all lately, talking to an online therapist can really help you out. I know it’s helped me tremendously, even when it comes to dealing with life’s little daily stressors!
I always recommend Online Therapy because it’s a comprehensive, effective online therapy toolkit at an affordable monthly cost. They are probably the most affordable and the most comprehensive online program out there right now. Get 20% off your first month at the link below!
15. Try a monthly reset
Taking some time once a month to give your life a “reset” is the most refreshing thing ever! Taking charge of your clutter, your social media feeds, and your mental health is always a good deed. I’ve got the monthly routine you didn’t even know you needed to reset your life right here!
16. Visit local tourist sites
It can be really fun to visit local tourist sites in all different seasons of the year. Your downtown area might be decorated super cute and fall-like, which is always an enjoyable sight to see! You can also check out what local seasonal places might be popping up around town.
17. Spend the whole day bundled up in warm blankets
Ahhhh, warm blankets are the best. Be sure you take a lazy fall self care day every once in a while, bundle up, and forget about everything else!
18. Carve pumpkins
Carving pumpkins is always a classic! You can always look up new carving designs on Pinterest for inspiration. It’s also a good opportunity to roast pumpkin seeds for a yummy snack!
19. Practice gratitude (and journal about it!)
Building a daily gratitude practice REALLY does make a difference in your mindset. The more you focus on the good, the more you make it a habit to do so.
I know I’ve noticed a big difference whenever I stay consistent with my gratitude practice. This fall self care idea is very simple to implement!
I have a printable gratitude journal that has everything you need to practice gratitude each day and develop life-changing positive habits, with gratitude journal prompts conveniently bundled for you!
It includes 12 pages to break down your gratitude practice each morning and evening, as well as weekly and monthly. Jam-packed with thought-provoking gratitude journal prompts and activities to keep you focused and on track this fall!
20. Collect fall leaves and scrapbook them
This is honestly such a cute idea to do every year. You can let the leaves remind you of all your good fall memories each year! See if you can find any particularly unique leaves to save.
21. Read good books
Now is the perfect chance to write out a “to be read” list! If it’s a little too chilly outside, you can get caught up on reading the books you’ve been meaning to get around to. Here’s my list of the must-buy self help books to read in your 20s.
22. Donate old clothes
If you’re sifting through your fall clothes from last year and realize there’s items that don’t fit or you just aren’t feelin’ anymore, this is a good time to donate them.
23. Find a fall festival or carnival
I love seeking out a good fall festival! More than likely, there’s one somewhere within an hour of you. This is always a fun fall weekend idea!
24. Go Halloween costume shopping
Halloween always creeps up on me and by the time it’s getting close, I still haven’t thought of my Halloween costume! Get ahead on the costume planning by deciding on your outfit early.
25. Make yourself a hot drink and enjoy every sip
This fall self care idea is a good chance to practice mindfulness. We usually don’t slow down, like ever, in our busy lives. But we absolutely should. Drink a hot drink, sit somewhere cozy, and focus on how good each sip makes you feel.
26. Unplug from social media
Doing a social media detox every few months is never a bad idea. We waste so much time scrolling. It’s good to be intentional about your social media consumption, and it usually makes you feel better too!
27. Tick something off your to do list
If you’ve got quite the overdue to-do list (guilty! 🙋♀️), carve some time out to get something done. The satisfaction of crossing it off afterward is amazing, and it helps me feel less overwhelmed!
28. Try cooking new soups or stews
Fall is 100% soup season. Warm yourself up with some yummy soup or stew recipes you haven’t tried before!
29. Find a new podcast
If you’ve gotten bored of the same couple podcasts for a while, why not seek out some new ones? I like to have a balance of self care and wellness podcasts, funny podcasts, and sometimes spiritual podcasts. Just a few ideas!
30. Create a new morning routine
Mornings might look different for you from season to season. (Maybe you’re swapping that oat milk latte for a pumpkin spice one 😉).
31. Spend some time out in the autumn nature
Spending time out in the autumn nature, even just for a few minutes each day, can really bring you joy! Getting a change of scenery every once in a while is great for your head space.
33. Bake a delicious pumpkin recipe
Pumpkin baked goods always hit different this time of year! Pumpkin pies, pumpkin cake, whatever you love to bake, make it pumpkin!
33. Do a fall themed puzzle
I’m a real big puzzle fan myself, so I recommend making your puzzle time more festive with a cute fall-themed puzzle! So many pretty fall landscapes to choose from.
34. Have a cozy movie night with a loved one
Since fall self care is all about prioritizing coziness, having a snuggly movie night in with a loved one is always great. Make sure you’ve got all the good blankets ready!
35. Enforce your boundaries
It might sound strange at first, but enforcing your boundaries really is an important act of self care. Take some time to reflect on your boundaries, whether they’ve been pushed recently, and what you can do to protect yourself and your mental health.
Struggle to stick to self-care? You need this planner in your life!
Life too hectic for self care? Not with The Busy Woman’s Self Care Journal!
Made by a busy woman, for busy women, the goal of this journal is simple: to make an effective self care plan that works for your unique needs. No matter how crazy life gets!
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Why do you need self-care? Here’s why it’s important.
Life gets busy, chaotic, and stressful. Tending to all the obligations in your life often leads to putting your needs on the back burner, which we don’t want!
If you routinely neglect to take time for yourself, your mental health can suffer and you may experience burnout. Always be sure to make time for self care during your week to combat the little stressors that creep up on you.
The fall season can get super busy with school, work, and seasonal activities, so even just taking 1 hour out of your week for a pleasant, enjoyable self care activity can make a huge difference! Think of self care like necessary maintenance you need to thrive and be in a mentally healthy place.
Fall Self Care Tips I Live By
Who doesn’t want to maximize the coziness and joy they get out of the fall?! If you want to give yourself the self care you truly deserve this season, here’s some of the intentions I swear by.
- Make your environment match the season – curate your space to reflect the fall vibes! This means swapping summer decor for fall decor, pulling out the fuzzy blankets, lighting those fall candles, and creating a true autumn ambiance.
- Slow down and focus on mindfulness – any time the weather gets cooler, I challenge myself to slow down a bit. I get more intentional about being grounded in the present moment through mindfulness. Tune into your senses to embrace the crisp fall air and the rustle of leaves.
- Get those fall morning/night routines started – Revamping my morning and night routines to prioritize fall coziness makes me look SO forward to this season! Putting on cozy sweaters as soon as I get out of bed, drinking warm herbal teas as I open up my laptop…it’s all so lovely!
- Reflect and goal-set – Take a look at how your summer went in terms of your summer goals. What went well, and what didn’t? In what ways do you need to shift gears and focus on in the next few months?
All in all, be intentional and nurture your mind, body, and soul this fall. Make this season your time to prioritize YOU!
How do you take care of yourself in the fall?
While you should be practicing self care year-round, regardless of the season, each season can bring different needs that you should tweak your self care routine for.
Do a fall check-in with yourself. Reflect on what you need more of and less of right now. Let this guide your fall goals and intentions with self care!
Fall brings cooler temperatures, so if your summer self care routine has involved a lot of outdoor, warm-weather activities, you might need to swap some of those for colder weather alternatives.
Switching things up can be fun to bring some variety into your routine. Instead of reading a good book outside in the grass, you can cozy-up in front of the fireplace for some reading time.
What kind of self-care do you need?
As you plan your fall self care routine, ask yourself questions like:
- What do I need most right now?
- How can I give myself the support and care I need in this season of my life?
- How have my self care needs changed from summer to fall?
If you’ve been feeling super drained, overwhelmed, and exhausted, try picking a fall self care activity that relaxes and soothes you. Instead of powering through for a morning walk, take it easy and do something that better matches your needs, like taking a warm bath.
Self care can fit into your life, no matter the season.
While this list of fall self care ideas has A LOT to go off of, by no means should you feel like you need to do it all! Sometimes, less is more with self care. Keep it simple. Make it work for your life.
Is fall an extra busy time for you? Don’t feel pressured to do 5 self-care activities every week! Pick just one or two that make sense for your routine and are do-able. Consistency will always matter most. Quality over quantity!
Even one small act of self care can make the biggest impact.