Spring has officially sprung

The benefits of spring cleaning

Jessica McLaren, Staff Writer

This past Sunday, March 20, marked the first day of spring in the Northern Hemisphere. Once the Earth’s axis begins to tilt toward the sun, temperatures start to rise and the ground begins to soften in hopes of one day housing rich, luscious greenery and other vegetation. As more food becomes available, animals including deer, geese, squirrels and birds as well as insects like bumblebees and butterflies will start to emerge — spring has officially sprung. 

Although we may not hibernate during the winter like other mammals, the changing of the seasons often has a substantial impact on the way that we live our lives. Since the beginning of time, the turn of spring has signified letting go of the past and instead embracing what could be. As we turn a new leaf and embark upon the spring season this year, take a moment to recoup — spring cleaning can provide an opportunity to refresh both your wardrobe and your mindset. 

Whether it involves a vigorous deep clean or just a few trips to the local donation center, spring cleaning can have a substantial impact on both our physical and mental wellbeing. Our homes collect a significant amount of dust, hair and other allergens throughout the day that can pose serious health risks when inhaled. Pet dander, in particular, can be especially dangerous to someone with an allergy, as it can result in itchy eyes, shortness of breath and even hives. Give your carpet a good vacuum and you will surely notice a difference in the quality of the air in your home. Ensuring that you have clean air to breathe is a great way to protect your airways, lungs and immune system and can even help you sleep better at night. 

Everyone has a different tolerance for clutter, but regularly discarding any items that keep us fixated on the past or no longer serve us purpose can help reduce stress and anxiety and improve mental clarity. As you sort through your drawers, cabinets and closets, take a moment to assess the underlying emotions and memories behind each item. Ask yourself how exactly you wish to move forward in your life and organize your home accordingly. After all, we are almost always the product of our environment. 

Spring cleaning is about setting yourself up for success, and it doesn’t necessarily have to happen during the months of March, April and May. The next time you start to feel like you aren’t in control of your life, dedicate a day to revitalizing your space so that it better aligns with your values, goals and aspirations. 

Oftentimes, a simple change in perspective can make a profound difference in our thoughts and behaviors and in the way that we treat ourselves. Put on some good music, grab a supportive friend and start the new season off with a clean slate by ridding your home and your mind of any toxicity that may be holding you back.