While we haven’t yet seen Spring in Syracuse, we are eternally hopeful that it is just around the corner; trading snow for mud, clouds for sunshine and hopefully some warmer temperatures to replace our polar vortexes. Spring is a time to get our affairs in order, sweep out the cobwebs and clean out the garage/attic/basement that needs some tidying. But what about our minds, souls, and sanity that also need some spring cleaning?
I have read so many articles in the last couple of months talking about how mothers today are stressed out. It’s no wonder. We have so many modern conveniences, yet are expected to perform at higher levels than our parents ever were. We feel that we should hold down fulfilling careers, have perfectly groomed children, be elite athletes, live in homes that look like they belong in the glossy pages of magazines, be ever present in our children’s schools, race to far too many after-school activities meant to keep our spawn from ever having a moment of down time, cook gourmet paleo, keto, fat-burning, gluten-free, meatless, tasty meals every night, not to mention maintaining a close relationship with our spouse. Whew. With all that pressure, no wonder most of us feel like we are not living up to societal standards of motherhood.
Time to spring clean your life, my friends. Bag up that emotional garbage and throw it out on the curb. Let it be someone else’s problem, but it will not weigh us down anymore. Throw out the expectations for perfection and be satisfied with being present. The time when our children need us is so fleeting, so why do we insist on racing through life and missing it? The world will always pull you in multiple directions, telling you to focus on things that seem so very important, but are they really?
Make a list of your top priorities and weed out anything that doesn’t fit into your plan for your life. Do you want to make health a priority? Focus on working out and eating healthier. Want to make time for relationships? Call your friend and schedule coffee. Want to improve yourself professionally? Take a class or join a networking group. Want to take a nap on the couch everyday? I salute you. Whatever it is, make time for it, because if you don’t prioritize you, who will?
Here are some ways you can spring clean your life:
- Get rid of toxic people. Buh-bye. Reevaluate relationships that don’t feel good, and invest in ones that lift you up.
- Marie Kondo your wardrobe – clothes that don’t fit, you don’t wear, don’t make you feel good? See ya.
- Reconnect with your passions. Who are you? What do you want to be when you grow up?
- Try a new hobby. Always wanted to take up watercolor painting, yoga, or write a book? Do it.
- Make time for tranquility daily. Turn off the notifications on your phone. Don’t answer emails. Respond to texts when it suits you. Spend less time on social media.
- Reevaluate your time-wasters. What activities are taking up time in your life that you don’t enjoy anymore? Disconnect yourself from them.
- Carve out a physical space just for you. Whether it is a desk, a craft room, a reading nook…create a space that is not for the kids or your spouse.
As Oprah Winfrey said, “You can have it all. Just not all at once.” Spending time spring cleaning your life this year will get you back to basics, eliminate the emotional stress and help you clarify what is most important in your life. We all need a little refresh now and again. So tell me, what part of your life are you planning to clean this spring?