Spring cleaning – body and mind

Article content

The buds are blooming, the landscape turning greener and the windows open up. Spring is arriving and with it, the annual “spring-cleaning”.

But spring-cleaning ought to be more than just a thorough and upheaval home task. In fact, I believe that spring, the season of rebirth and renewal, behooves us to do a renewal check in of ourselves.

In yoga philosophies, the poses we do at a yoga class are only one part of eight studies for a complete yoga practice. Within these eight there is an ancient Sankrit word, “saucha”. The Sanskrit term can be literally translated as ‘purity,’ ‘cleanliness’ and ‘clearness,’ and it speaks to the spring-cleaning we might want to do of our body and mind.

There are two aspects of saucha. One is the disinclination for one’s own body, and two is the disinclination towards another’s body. When we are not clear of what we are consuming or engaging in, we might not be aware of the affects on our holistic selves physically, emotionally, mentally or spiritually.

Advertisement

Story continues below
This advertisement has not loaded yet, but your article continues below.

Article content

Developing the habit of withdrawing from the external, to go within and create opportunity for self-discovery can provide us answers to what we are consuming (which can be food, social media, groups we belong to, ways we think etc.) and how it is affected us. Is it creating more health and happiness or not?

Developing a routine that accommodates short periods of solitude or withdrawn from the world with focus on how you feel and how you want to feel can assist us to discover what areas of our life we need to clean up.

Years ago, when I was a community nurse in patient homes, my supervisor shared with me, “you can often tell a person’s mind space by their physical space.” In fact, there are researchers that have studied the affects of a cluttered home and the angst it can create for the mind.

Adapting minimalistic attitudes is a great way to keep not just your physical spaces, but also your inner space, decluttered. Start with clearing and organising the desk at work, your wardrobes, and then the whole house. Toss out everything that you don’t use or need and see how lighter you feel from within.

Cultivating compassion for all beings can be helpful. Instead of making any judgments, realize we all have struggles and send a silent prayer or well wish for them to suffer less, to have opportunities to learn and grow. This is a great way to develop a non-judgemental attitude towards all, and to foster emotional purity and stability.

Breathe and meditation are mindfulness practices that have been proven with scientific backing to change and spring-clean our physical, emotional and spiritual clutter. Studies have proven that mindfulness practices create better focus, increased calm, more compassion for others, improved interpersonal relationship skills, increased memory retention and positive stress reduction and coping skills.

When you do your spring-cleaning this year, consider beyond your structural home, and investigate holistic self as well.

News Near Brantford

This Week in Flyers