Take spring cleaning deeper with self-care

Emma Anderson, Lifestyles Reporter

Spring cleaning can be more than just organizing the bathroom cupboards and mopping the floors. Make it about cleaning up your life and preparing to head into the upcoming season change with a clear heart and mind.

Thankfully, there are a few ways to make spring a healthier and better season emotionally and mentally.

One of the first, and most important, steps is cutting the toxic people out of your life. There is no better time to end meaningless relationships that bring no value or happiness to your life.

“If you are constantly leaving an encounter with a friend or significant other feeling drained, something is wrong,” said freshman exercise science major Alexa Dulas.  

An article by the University of Michigan said, “people with strong family or social connections are generally healthier than those who lack a support network.”

So, find your true friends and stick with them. At the end of the day you really only need a few close buddies you know will always be there for you.

Sophomore pre-pharmacy major Abby Mathiason said being upfront with the person about the relationship and what isn’t working for you is important.

Spring is the perfect time of year to figure out who your people are, and you will be happier once you ditch the ones who bring you down.

The phrase “keep calm and carry on” is way overused, but it does have a great underlying meaning. It is important to take a few minutes out of the day to meditate, pray or reflect in order to relax your mind and take a breather.

“I like to meditate while doing yoga because I feel like it brings back my clear perspective,” Mathiason said.

Simple things that give your mind time to unwind and rejuvenate can start or end the day on a positive note.

“My way of reflecting and meditating comes in quiet time spent with God,” Dulas said. “I do this every morning and before bed and it simply consists of time meditating, reading through devotionals and spending time in prayer.”

The third tip to becoming stronger mentally and emotionally is learning to laugh. At first glance, this one might seem easy, but there is a little more to it than you think. Finding ways to lighten up and searching for humor in disappointing, stressful or uncomfortable situations can improve your mental health.

Life sometimes sucks, but learning to laugh through the good and bad times will make it much more enjoyable.

The next piece of advice is to practice saying “no.” It is easy to deny things we genuinely don’t want to do, but it’s tougher when it’s something you want to do.

“I try and prioritize the things I have to do over the things I want to do,” Mathiason said.

Understanding what your schedule can logically fit in and not spreading yourself too thin can mean you need to say “no” to people sometimes.

“Everyday I write a to-do list with the most immediate needs. Then once that list is completed I can do things like spend time with friends, journal or go on my phone,” Dulas said. “It also helps to have the things you want to do sprinkled into the breaks from the things you have to do.”

Making this change, and practicing it as often as you need, will relieve the pressure of constantly having to overcommit, so get ready for your emotional and mental health to flourish.  

The final tip is to switch up your diet and exercise. This one is kind of redundant, but it really is true that if you physically are not healthy, your mental and emotional health will also suffer.

Hit up the gym, find some walking paths and trade the DQ Blizzards for protein shakes.

“Run or walk or really do anything outside to get the fresh spring air in your lungs,” Mathiason said.

While you physically take care of yourself, you are also mentally and emotionally taking care of yourself too.