The sun and sundresses are finally here!
As we pull back our curtains and dust off our picnic blankets, let’s pause a beat to consider other areas in our lives that could use a little spring cleaning. It’s the season of new beginnings, an arguably more inspiring time to make a change than the new year—spring means the whole world is right there with you, and nature’s a pretty great cheerleader. Here are some good places to start checking for cobwebs.
Morning routines become routine for a reason—we all crave ease and repeatability to make it through those first sleepy moments of the day. It’s worthwhile to give thought to those habits, to see if there’s room for improvement or some extra joy. Track yourself for a work week, mentally or on your phone or with an old-school legal pad. Do you typically snooze 5 times before dragging yourself out of bed? Do you always have to rush out the door? Do you find yourself preoccupied with the day’s tasks while eating breakfast? Small changes in your morning routine can make big differences in your day. If you’re a snoozer, try setting your alarm for a little bit later, but move your alarm out of reach. If you’re in a perpetual rush, try sleeping earlier or cutting something out of your routine—shower or prep your lunch the night before. If your breakfast is stressful, a 5-minute meditation could do wonders.
Take advantage of all the delicious produce that peaks this time of year. Instead of following your tried and true map of the local grocery store, make it a point to linger awhile and check out the new arrivals. Buying the things that look freshest at the grocery store will force you to actually use them in the kitchen. It’s a great catalyst to find new recipes and favorite dishes.
It’s easy to start running on autopilot at work once you get the hang of things. Not to say that every day, every client, every phone call or meeting isn’t different because they very well may be. But even if your work isn’t monotonous, it’s helpful to take a step back and examine your day-in and day-out. Ask yourself if you’re accomplishing the things you set out to do when you took the job. Challenge yourself to take on responsibilities in the areas that interest you most, even if those aren’t technically in your job description. Most of us are in entry level positions, the sun-soaked stepping stones to our bright futures. This means that initiative, scrappiness and self-empowerment are the promising keys to our next career move. Starting in the spring could put you in a really good place for your mid-year review.
The coldness of winter makes it easy to fall into a relationship rut—it’s called cuddle weather for a reason. Make it a point to leave the Seamless & Netflix alone for a sunny weekend of exploration with your partner in crime. You’ll remember what it feels like to discover things together, things like Vitamin D and endorphins! There’s really no better aphrodisiac.
Does an endless, unplanned walk through the park sound less than appealing to you? It’s an unfortunate reality that couples have a tendency to shack up and settle in the winter, but if things have been feeling off or unexciting for a while now, it could also be a good time to check in with yourself. Are you happy? Is there any emotional vertical in which you feel unfulfilled? If so, there’s no better time than the present to do something about it.
The warmer weather brings so many new possibilities to be active. Maybe this spring is the year you join the kickball league you always wanted to. Or maybe you tag along when your co-worker goes rock climbing. Or maybe you and your best friend pick a different water sport to try each weekend. Refreshing your workout regimen is one of the best ways to remind yourself of your body’s incredible ability. Marvel in that wonder. Even if it’s not a big change—it could be as simple as finding a new running path to get your heart racing and your lungs filled with fresh, spring air.
We’re not talking about your weekend errands like laundry and grocery shopping. Most of us have a to-do list buried somewhere that has less urgent, more seemingly lofty goals like learning “A Thousand Miles” on the piano, chairing a volunteer committee, authoring a book or road tripping across state borders. Uncrumple that list, pin it up and pick something to start with. Lofty only lasts as long as your hesitation to jump in and try something new.