Spring is often the time of year associated with new beginnings, change, and growth.
Spring is also synonymous for the proverbial “spring cleaning” that involves cleaning out the hall closet (also known as the abyss of unused, “not-quite-sure-what to do with” things), the bedroom closet spilling out with clothes you haven’t worn in a year and shoes that you forgot you owned, and in some cases, the entire house or apartment.
This time of year there are numerous articles in magazines and lifestyle segments on the morning talk show circuit featuring professional home organizers espousing spring-cleaning tips to purge the unnecessary things that clutter your physical space.
So this year, why not spring clean your life as well?
Use this time to take stock of your emotional, mental, and physical well-being in an effort to purge the unnecessary, while putting the emphasis on the positive and healthy areas in your life.
Here are some basis steps to start spring-cleaning your life:
- You give your closet or home a once-over to evaluate whether you want to keep, donate, or purge things. Take a look at your life’s emotional, mental, and physical aspects. Begin to write down or mentally list things and people you find to be positive and those you find contribute only negative energy.
Once you start taking a closer look, you may be surprised to find out which things and people fall into which category. This process may feel both freeing and upsetting at the same time because you may discover things and people have shifted in your life for better or worse.
- Once you have a better overview of what’s in your emotional, mental, and physical “closet,” now it’s time to start figuring out what to do with the “keep, donate, purge” piles you have created. Obviously, you can cannot donate or purge people out of your live per se.
However, you can start to redefine the role they will play in your life. You can decide how much and what type of energy you wish to expend on certain things and people.
- Redefining your relationships with things and people in your life often involves creating new boundaries with others, changing your habits or way of thinking and doing things, and learning to accept that as you change, your relationships with others and yourself change.
Remember, any change is frequently bittersweet and the painful part of it often is the primary deterrent to change. However, if you mentally prepare yourself for this side of change you will likely be better equipped to muster your way through the tough stuff as you make your way to the other side.
As with “spring-cleaning” your closet and home, you have some difficult decisions to make about what to do in certain areas of your life. In the end, however, you ultimately feel happier, lighter, and more confident. There is now room in your life for new things, ideas, people, and adventures. Removing the clutter in your life will open the door for a simpler, more fulfilling experience with the world and others.
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Last reviewed: By John M. Grohol, Psy.D. on 1 May 2013
Published on PsychCentral.com. All rights reserved.
Sadlovsky, M. (2013). 3 Quick Tips to Help Spring-Clean Your Life. Psych Central. Retrieved on March 10, 2014, from http://psychcentral.com/blog/archives/2013/05/01/3-quick-tips-to-help-spring-clean-your-life/