Is it time to spring clean your self-care?

Is it time to spring clean your self-care?

Well, Spring has finally arrived!

Fortunately, this is one event so predictable that not even the pandemic could thwart its arrival. If you’re like me, the arrival of Spring is a much-anticipated event. As a resident of Manitoba, the winter can feel long and the arrival of Spring always puts a bit of a “spring” in my step. (I know, what a terrible pun, but it is true!)

With Spring, also comes the idea of “Spring Cleaning.” My mother has always been a firm believer in this tradition and I still have vivid memories of her washing down walls, ceilings, floors, and cleaning all the window coverings in honour of the Spring arrival. To be perfectly honest, I haven’t really carried on this family tradition but, as an Intentional Therapist, it occurred to me that a modernized version of this old tradition might be just what the psychologist ordered.

As our community members know, we emphasize an individual approach to self-care, that is fluid and readily adapts to changing circumstances. It is in the spirit of this and with the arrival of Spring, we’re encouraging all our members to adopt a new tradition, “Spring Clean Your Self-Care.” Doesn’t this sound like much more fun than just “Spring Cleaning”?!

Although the official start of Spring has passed, we’re encouraging all our members to create some white space in their calendars to complete what we hope will become an annual event. Set aside 15 to 30 minutes to take stock of your winter self-care and reflect on your current circumstances and any upcoming events. Once you’ve done that, ask yourself a few questions:

  • Which self-care activities do I want to pack up for Spring? (e.g., walking on the treadmill, working past 5pm, etc.)
  • Which self-care activities do I want to pull out of hiding? (e.g., walking outside, planning a flower garden, etc.)
  • Which self-care activities do I want to hang on to? (e.g., self-compassion, trying new recipes)
  • Are there situational factors (e.g., parenting, caring for elderly parents, increased work demands due to the pandemic, etc.) that I need to be on the look out for, as they tend to promote beliefs that go against self-care?
  • If so, what’s going to be helpful in countering these and maintaining self-care in the midst of these factors? (e.g., scheduling self-care, posting reminders about how caring for yourself also helps you be a better caregiver, reaching out for help from others, etc.)
  • Are there any upcoming events that have the potential to derail my self-care?
  • If so, what can I do to reduce their impact?

Let's all embrace this modernized version of an old tradition and encourage other women in our circles to do the same!