• Kate Maxwell

Is it time for a 'Spring Clean'?

Updated: Oct 7

When we think ‘Spring Clean’ it often brings up visualisations of individuals deep cleaning their houses top to bottom, throwing away old possessions and belongings, or buying a completely new wardrobe for the oncoming season. Vary rarely do we look further into this notion of a ‘Spring Clean’ and ask ourselves why people do it – or why they feel such a need to change?

Traditionally, spring-cleaning dates back hundreds of years. Originally routed in some cultures as the genuine need to clean your home after physically being shut in all winter – this impression for some still remains today, while for others its a quick fix to bring themselves into the right headspace moving forward into summer. Throughout the year as the seasons change, it is not uncommon for people to find themselves in somewhat of a ‘lull’. As winter drags on, cold and dark, we can get complacent in our routines and become unmotivated to perform our usual tasks. We look ahead to summer and make plans for then, all while failing to acknowledge the present and ignoring the bad habits we get ourselves into over those wintery months. Then, before we know it, spring is upon us. We throw out our winter clothes, give the kitchen floors a good scrub, and expect that to fix our problems – often without considering or really looking at changing our habits and routines again until closer to summer.

So what do we need to address then? Is it a case of out with the old and in the new, or more of a readjustment to bring us back in line with where we want to head in life? Regardless of where we currently sit in our ‘lull’ period, there are a few simple steps that we can take to get back on track and moving forward into the rest of the year – without having to revamp our wardrobes or clean our houses top to bottom. Check some of these out below, and have a think on how you might be able to implement these into your daily life!

Reassess our goals

In the dark and colder months of winter, many of us struggle to keep our motivation levels high and on track as we work towards our goals. We may find that our progress has slipped or we weren’t as productive as we’d convinced ourselves we’d be in autumn. When coming out the other side of winter, this can be a great time to reassess our goals and start planning again for the future. Be open and honest with yourself about where you are currently at, as this will give you the best chance to start moving forward again. It is okay to change your goals if need be, or readjust them to suit what you would now like to achieve. On the other hand, you may have smashed through your goals during winter and are now finding that you need to expand on, or further your end goal. Reassess, make a plan, and get back into action as you launch into spring.

Reconnect with friends and family

Lets face it, in winter we are all guilty of cancelling or avoiding plans in favour of cuddling up on the couch with a blanket, a hot drink and a roaring fire to watch a movie or read a book. Many of us avoid going out and decide that summer is the time for socialising and get togethers. However just like our habits and routines, if left unchecked, we can find ourselves in another sort of lull – content in our own company, but disconnected from the lives of our friends and family. Use this change in season to reconnect with a loved one. Make plans to catch up with those you can (even if just for a quick coffee or a walk), or give others a call to check in. Not only will they likely appreciate you reaching out, but also social interaction can provide us with feel-good endorphins and those strengthen relationships.

Change up our diets

Everyone is different, with diet structure and intake being a great representation of this. What works for one person will not necessarily always work for another, so it is important to keep this in mind when looking at what we are eating or fuelling our bodies with. Over winter it can be easy to go for the sugary and sweet or carb-laden options, however these are not always the best choice to provide us with the energy and nutrients that our bodies need. As we move into the warmer months our diets tend to change with what fruits and vegetables come into season, but being aware of these options can help us to get a little more creative with our meal choices and planning. Read about how time outside can benefit our mental health.

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