Spring comes with feelings of awakening and action. Lots of ‘ideas’ are thrown at us to get ‘bikini ready’ and make ‘mid-year resolutions’. Let’s view the change of season as more of a gentle prompt. We may be feeling sluggish and heavy from winter, and need to work mindfully with the energy of Spring to shed our Winter mindset. Spring is a fabulous time to be inspired! Integrating small changes can help you ‘start over’ in a positive and long-lasting way!
How to refresh and renew before spring kicks in?
Eat fresh & seasonally:
During Winter our bodies crave warming, heavier foods. Introduce a morning ritual of drinking warm water, lemon and ginger ‘tea’ before eating. This enhances the alkalinity of our body and aids the digestive system. Lemons are high in Vitamin C, protecting the body against immune system deficiencies- vital in the change of seasons. Spring is an ideal time to make some gentle changes to our diet. A ‘spring clean’ of your diet doesn’t mean restricting yourself or going on crazy cleanses and detoxes. It’s all about eating whole, unrefined, and including raw foods. Many ancient philosophies such as Chinese and Ayurveda knowledge recommend consuming different foods depending on the season to maintain good health. As the weather brightens, head out to your local farmers’ market to see what goodies Spring is growing! Eating a rainbow of foods is a great way to load up on fibre, vitamins, and other disease-fighting compounds. Spring is a time of new growth. Why not buy some cute pots for your windowsill or backyard, and plant some herbs? Not only will you have something to nurture, you’ll be able to pick as you need, whilst reaping the many health benefits of Spring and Summer herbs.
Clean out your cupboards:
Many people view Spring as an opportune time to ‘Spring clean’ the house! I recently read an amazing book by Marie Kondo on ‘tidying up’. I took away a few important messages from this book. It’s important to work in categories and work completely through one area (eg clothes) before moving onto the next one. Put all of the items out (eg clothes onto bed) and go through each one individually, asking if it sparks joy. If yes, keep, if no, turf! Make sure you throw things out that are unusable, and why not donate your still working unwanted goods and make a difference to someone less fortunate?
Reconnect with Friends:
Often during Winter, we feel like we go into ‘hibernation’. Who wants to get dressed up and head out in the cold waiting for an hour for a table?! As we thaw out and embrace the warmer months, we may realise that we may not have been putting enough effort into our relationships with friends and family. Or it may be a time of awakening and realisation that certain people aren’t helping us in our journey to live our best lives. This is a good time to really think about the people in our life, and also how we act. You may find you need to put some extra effort into your family life, by reaching out, talking, asking questions, visiting. Tell your partner out loud what you are grateful for about them. You may also feel like you aren’t spending enough time with people who lift you up, who understand you and where you are trying to go. Be honest with yourself and the people you have relationships with, calmly and mindfully. Make sure you make time to hang out with your besties- go for a walk together instead of just chatting on the phone!
Take time to reflect:
Meditation (Reflection) is a practice that can be started at any time, at any age. Why not use Spring to learn something new that is going to have a myriad of benefits? A good way to start out is to use one of the many free apps out there. Mindful meditation is perfect for beginners. Ensure you are in a quiet space where you won’t be interrupted, and set a timer. Close your eyes, relax your jaw, relax your limbs. Scratch your nose if needed! Begin to bring your focus to your breath. Focus on the feeling of your inhale through your nostrils, and the air filling your lungs and belly, then the out breath. Stay with this gentle roll. Every time your mind wanders (which it will!) simply acknowledge you are thinking, then move your focus back to your breath. This may happen hundreds of times during the meditation- this is normal! Try and meditate every day, but remember to be gentle with yourself- if you miss a day or two, don’t beat yourself up- just pick up from where you left off.E
Enjoy springtime by simplifying your life to include new and old elements that support and revitalise your body and soul. Learn to develop a rhythm and routine that helps you gradually lighten up physically, mentally, and emotionally.
Article by Catherine Ross