Ah, breathe out… welcome to spring. It’s that time of year where I start writing about change, about new beginnings, about setting goals and about blooming out of your Winter hibernation again. Every year, I feel like I follow a similar pattern in shifting my focus throughout the seasons. This last Winter, especially going through another lockdown, it’s been easier than ever to stay inside and really hunker down on some soul work and some new projects. But now, it’s time to refresh things a little.
Don’t get me wrong, I love hibernation season – those cold winter nights and sleepy, rainy, candlelit evenings working away – but as I sit here, coffee mug in hand, late afternoon sunlight stretching across my desk, I can’t help but feel a little relieved that Spring’s arrived. Intense inside work is important, but there’s only so long and so deep you can go before you need the flowery scents of spring to bring you back up to the surface.
So spring, for me, really is a rebirth, where I feel like I get to be a little more outgoing, spend some more time with people (especially this year!) and outside in nature. I become much more outward focussed throughout the spring and summer, before winding back down into my hibernation in the winter. So if this is our season of rebirth, who do you want to emerge as? Here’s my list of things to refresh this spring.
“Nothing ever seems impossible in spring, you know.” – L.M. Montgomery
Your baggage (the emotional stuff, yanoe?)
Yeah, it’s not fun, but freeing yourself from emotional baggage is always a freeing, uplifting experience. I’ve written before about learning to let go, and spring, for symbolism’s sake is one of the best times to start the process.
So pick up a healthy habit to help you work on this. Having a small daily habit that helps you chip away at bigger scale problems can be really beneficial. I really recommend journaling, for me, written word has always been my best form of thinking, especially when working through journal prompts of points I might not ordinarily think on. But otherwise, it might be meditating, walking, talking to a friend every day, some kind of art or exercise – experiment and see what helps you the most.
To prepare for my move in autumn, I’ve been slowly going through my stuff, packing away what I don’t need right now and getting rid of what I don’t need, want or use. I’ve been trying to condense what I own and use for years and I always find having less things makes me more excited and appreciative of what I have (Netflix’s documentary Minimalism has some super interesting discussions on the topic). I love a tidy space, so the less clutter for me the better. Not to mention the lovely feeling that someone else might be able to take the mantle of loving and making good use of something I’ve loved so much.
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All about you
Once you’ve given everything around you a refresh this spring, you might feel eager to turn inward to work on refreshing yourself too. In the season of cleansing and rebirth, what better time to free yourself from whatever’s weighing you down. This could be picking up some new self-care habits, promising to invest some more time in a hobby or doing some work on your soul. This could be cutting off unhealthy relationships or habits, setting yourself new personal or social goals, investing in a new interest, working on improving your health, anything! Take some time to write a list of things that are making you feel heavier and come up with small, simple actions to slowly, but surely free yourself from them.
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Of course, this isn’t a must. If you’re on a budget, aren’t fussed by clothes or don’t want to spend out, you can get creative with your summer clothes from years previous – if it needs a bit of love, try out a fun DIY, thrift some fun accessories or consider doing a clothes swap with your friends.
I’ve decided to go through my current wardrobe and use the Marie Kondo ‘does this spark joy?’ method to the max. My body has changed A LOT this past year – I think hitting the big 21, my body thought it’d give me one last kick from puberty before finally sending me on my way. So it’s my focus this year to really start working with my body to find clothes that fit well and really, truly make me feel good – no half-hearted maybes here.
Like your wardrobe, you don’t have to go out buying tons of things to give your space a refresh this spring. A simple rearrangement or the addition of some flowers or a candle can make so much difference. I used to swap out my duvet covers, cushions and blankets for cold months vs. warm months. Not only was it nice to have things appropriate for the weather, but it felt like I’d redecorated the room every six months! Simple changes make a big difference.
Second, have a proper spring clean – like a deep spring clean to get all those jobs done that usually get put off – I’m talking scrubbing the tub, washing the skirting, moving the bigger furniture to clean behind and underneath. It seems like a lot of effort, but the results will always speak for themselves. It’ll feel like a whole new home.
Spring is such a glorious season that it’s hard not to feel a shift in the way everybody moves through their days. The days are longer, the nights are warmer, there’s more sunshine and it just feels different. So what better way to align with the season than some new, sunshine-spiked routines?
I always have my Spring bucket list handy, so I even try to sprinkle some flowery spring activities throughout my every day, just to refresh things a little. Tiny actions like doing my workout in the sun, going for more walks, drinking my morning coffee outside or sitting at the window, waking up early to read or write, even shifting my diet to some summery foods. Adding these little jolts of spring merriment into my day gives me little reasons to smile, to feel connected to and appreciate the world around me. Not to mention, as I must have said a hundred times in this blog, it’s just nice to feel something fresh, right?
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Whatever you decide to refresh this spring, make sure you do it compassionately. None of this “I’ll be a whole new person overnight” nor “I hate this, let’s replace it”. Make your choices slowly and intuitively. If you’re letting go of something, especially something that might be a negative to you now, don’t forget to thank it for the good it’s brought before you go and not to replace it, but to build upon the good foundations and lessons it has taught you.
Be kind, always, and don’t forget to smell the flowers. Love, Ella-Rose xx