We are entering the transition from summer to fall, even though you couldn’t necessarily tell from the temperature . . . but the mornings do seem cooler. And leaves are beginning to turn colors and drop from some trees. We are in another phase of release and letting go.

In Chinese Medicine, fall is the time of letting go, of sorting through what we have gathered in from the summer growing season. We want to keep what will carry us through autumn and winter, and discard the rest. We let go so there may be space for what nourishes us. And, we let go in layers.

When we declutter, we usually don’t do it all at once – even if we have piled everything from the closet in the middle of the floor. We still have to hold things, inspect them, consider them. Whether it is a piece of clothing or household item or something for which we haven’t forgiven ourselves, we look at it again and at the right time, we let it go. We don’t do anything all at once. We don’t make huge leaps. Even when we experience a paradigm shift, it’s made up of a lot of little steps until we finally make the last little tiny step and cross the threshold of 51% change in our thinking or perception. We let go in layers. Layer after layer after layer.

I asked my friend and artist Lisa Fields to make a piece of art for me and she created Layers (below). I saw it as a representation of all my emotional layers even before I knew that Layers was what she named it. I look at it every morning and it reminds me that today, there’s probably one layer I can kindly and lovingly let go of. It will present itself. Maybe a layer of old anger, or disappointment, or expectation, or resentment, or sadness, or grief, or bitterness, or regret, or a deep aching of longing, or wishing I’d done something differently. I just need to be willing, not grasp too tightly, and trust that whatever layer is being peeled away is just the right one, at just the right time.

And then I will be a little lighter, my heart a little clearer, and I’ll be able to love a little deeper.