Spring is a time of revitalization, growth, new life, and new beginnings. And that’s not just for the plants in the garden.
When the weather gets warmer and the days get longer, our resolve to be our best selves somehow starts to strengthen. Even though we have been looking after our health and well-being all winter long, we often find ourselves looking to mix things up. To do a little spring cleaning, if you will.
Spring cleaning our wellness routines means pruning back that which does not serve us and focusing on the activities that will make us feel our best. It’s a retreat from external pressure and a return to ourselves. It’s choosing to focus on the good, be grateful for growth, and spend time in a rapidly changing and vivacious natural world.
Looking to do some spring cleaning of your own routines? Here are some of our favorite ways to spring forward in our day-to-day wellness.
Focus on holistic wellness.
It’s easy to look at our wellness routines as ways to change numbers on a scale or at a doctor’s office. And while it is, of course, good to be mindful of these things to an extent, science has shown more and more that a focus on holistic health is just as important.
Take a look at your wellness routine and determine what you are actually doing it for. Is it to simply fit in a certain dress, or are you actively trying to feel and be your best self? If you want a health program that prioritizes your overall well-being above all else, check out our guide to holistic wellness to learn how to begin.
Get outside more.
Getting outside isn’t hard when the weather is starting to become so beautiful! Reconnect with the cycles of the Earth by trying to spend a little bit of time in nature each day. This could be on a quick morning walk around the block, for a check-in on your garden in the morning, or even an ambient dinner on a patio in the evening. Nature helps remind us that we are part of something much larger than ourselves–and the extra dose of Vitamin D doesn’t hurt either.
Think about the time you spend using electronics.
We love our electronics. And as easy as it is to fall asleep scrolling Instagram or watching Netflix each night, it’s really not good for us. The reality is that unnatural light can impede melatonin production, overstimulate our brains and impede our natural rhythms, all of which can impair sleep as well as cause long-term harm to our health.
It’s easy to know that we should spend less time with our electronics, but sometimes it can be hard to actually do it. That’s why we recommend a hybrid approach to cutting back: focus on the electronics that serve you at night and adjust the way you spend time with those that don’t. For example, you can absolutely read a book using an e-reader, many of which are calibrated to not emit as harmful of light as other traditional devices. You can also still use your phone, but don’t use it to scroll. Play music or white noise or an audiobook, then plug it in the charge away from your nightstand. It’s a good way to give your body a little bit of stimulation without disturbing its natural rhythms.
Remember your mental health.
Overall wellness includes mental health. Period.
If you find yourself struggling to maintain normal routines or doing everything you can but still feeling blue, it’s not your fault. Many times, our preoccupation with external forces causes us to lose sight of how we are feeling within ourselves.
If you feel this way, you are not alone. And the good news is that there are hundreds of ways to start changing the way your brain functions. Seek out a therapist or counselor if you need to talk to someone. Try using a meditation app to spark thoughtfulness and gratitude. Head out to the garden to reduce anxiety and depression. Spring is a time of renewal, and there is no better time than the present to renew the way you talk to and think about yourself.
Above mental health, mindfulness can extend to many different aspects of our lives. It can mean practicing meditation and gratitude, yes, but it’s so much more than that. Try to exercise mindfully, listening to your body about the type of movement it wants today. Some days it could tell you to run while others it may tell you to rest. Try intuitive eating, timing, and pacing your meals around when you feel hungry and when you feel full.
Enjoy fresh, homegrown ingredients.
This is a fun one! Spring vegetables are the best, and there’s no better time to eat them than when they are in season. Head to your local farmer’s market (it counts as your outdoor time!) to pick up locally grown produce, then get creative in the kitchen to whip up delicious seasonal meals.
Even better? Start your very own vegetable or herb garden in your backyard and on your balcony so that you can cultivate fresh produce all year long. We prefer container gardens (no bias :)).
Gardening will also get you outside, as well as help you be more mindful, feel less anxious and get you moving. It’s an all-around win!
Be with your community.
With the weather getting warmer, it seems as though everyone is leaving hibernation and getting back to socialization. And it turns out that being socially connected is an important part of overall health and wellness. Foster your community–or build a new one–by planning a dinner party, taking walks around your neighborhood, or signing up for an outdoor fitness class.