11 Tips To Start Spring Cleaning For Your Mental, Emotional, And Physical Health

11 Tips To Start Spring Cleaning For Your Mental, Emotional, And Physical Health

Let's work on us this Spring!
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Tis the season for Spring Cleaning! While Spring Cleaning is usually associated with items, I encourage you to evaluate all areas of your life this year: mental, emotional, and physical. Here are some areas to get you started, as well as some awesome resources to help you out! (Because we all know a lot of these things are easier said than done.)

1. Get rid of negative thoughts.

This is much easier said than done, but even just starting your day with a positive affirmation on something you're insecure about will go a long way. Be kind to yourself first so that you can have the energy to be kind to others.

2. Get that 8 hours every night.

No more sleepless nights. Sleep allows your brain to repair itself from the wear and tear of the day. It is also the best way to cope with stress, solve problems, and get better when we're sick! 8 hours of sleep is a must, so get rid of all your distractions and give yourself time to wind down each night so that you get better rest.

3. Start a weekly exercise routine.

Exercise is healthy for your brain and body, and there's no better time to start than now while you have access to all the free classes at the Student Rec Center! If you aren't a student and don't want to buy a gym membership, download a good exercise app or search through YouTube for a variety of fun programs you can use to get fit!

4. Give your body the fuel it needs.

With so many fast food options, it can be really difficult to eat the way we should. Sheet pan meals are a great way to get started on your healthy eating journey! They take minimal prep and time, and they can be super versatile, too. Investing in some good quality tupperware is key to packing healthy lunches as well, and don't forget a nice water bottle!

5. Make time everyday to do something you enjoy.

Sure, it would be nice to have that project done, but if you have other times to work on it in small sections instead of pumping it all out at once, definitely do it. Use the spare time you have to do something you enjoy like reading, drawing, listening to music, spending time with friends or loved ones, or watching Netflix to avoid burnout.

6. No more procrastinating.

On the flip-side, don't wait until the last minute to work on a project, assignment, or to study for a test. These are all sources of avoidable stress that can really take a toll on your well-being (and your GPA). Some ways to avoid procrastination are by making planned rewards to for completing parts of a task, eliminating distractions, among others.

7. Nix Toxic Relationships.

Relationships are a two-way street. If you're giving your all to your friends, family, and love interests and aren't getting anything back in return, it's time to go.

8. Books you'll never read again.

Now onto some of the easier stuff. Studies show getting grid of clutter of all kinds can help us have a more calm and organized mind. Why not start with old books and magazines you have laying around? Better yet, donate them to a local women's shelter and give someone else the chance to learn the lessons they each have to teach!

9. Donate/sell old clothes.

It can be hard to let go of the past, but you aren't who you were yesterday, let alone who you were five years ago when you wore that purple jumpsuit. Get rid of things that do't serve your current style. This will make picking out outfits much easier and streamline your morning routine, as well as benefit you in many other surprising ways.

10. Release the possessions that don't serve you.

We all know how hard it can be to get rid of something that came from a loved one, whether we like the object or not, but it's important to start letting that guilt go so that we can use our energy and space for things that serve us right now. Keep what makes you happiest, and let go of the rest because the person that gave it to you is more than that object. They're all the memories you have of them and with them, and getting rid of this physical thing will never take the things that really matter away.

11. Lose the multiples

Do you really need four can openers and three blenders? Regift or sell the things in your living spaces that you have more than one of! It will make things easier to find when you need them, and give you a lot more space for things that you do use.

With a new sense of purpose to get your life together, let the start of Spring be the moment you re-devote yourself to YOU. When you put yourself and your own well-being first, you'll be amazed by the amount of positive energy that will trickle down to your relationships, thus making all areas of your life exponentially better. Happy Spring Cleaning!

Cover Image Credit: Emmy Rinehart

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30 Things I'd Rather Be Than 'Pretty'

Because "pretty" is so overrated.
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Nowadays, we put so much emphasis on our looks. We focus so much on the outside that we forget to really focus on what matters. I was inspired by a list that I found online of "Things I Would Rather Be Called Instead Of Pretty," so I made my own version. Here is a list of things that I would rather be than "pretty."

1. Captivating

I want one glance at me to completely steal your breath away.

2. Magnetic

I want people to feel drawn to me. I want something to be different about me that people recognize at first glance.

3. Raw

I want to be real. Vulnerable. Completely, genuinely myself.

4. Intoxicating

..and I want you addicted.

5. Humble

I want to recognize my abilities, but not be boastful or proud.

6. Exemplary

I want to stand out.

7. Loyal

I want to pride myself on sticking out the storm.

8. Fascinating

I want you to be hanging on every word I say.

9. Empathetic

I want to be able to feel your pain, so that I can help you heal.

10. Vivacious

I want to be the life of the party.

11. Reckless

I want to be crazy. Thrilling. Unpredictable. I want to keep you guessing, keep your heart pounding, and your blood rushing.

12. Philanthropic

I want to give.

13. Philosophical

I want to ask the tough questions that get you thinking about the purpose of our beating hearts.

14. Loving

When my name is spoken, I want my tenderness to come to mind.

15. Quaintrelle

I want my passion to ooze out of me.

16. Belesprit

I want to be quick. Witty. Always on my toes.

17. Conscientious

I want to always be thinking of others.

18. Passionate

...and I want people to know what my passions are.

19. Alluring

I want to be a woman who draws people in.

20. Kind

Simply put, I want to be pleasant and kind.

21. Selcouth

Even if you've known me your whole life, I want strange, yet marvelous. Rare and wondrous.

22. Pierian

From the way I move to the way I speak, I want to be poetic.

23. Esoteric

Do not mistake this. I do not want to be misunderstood. But rather I'd like to keep my circle small and close. I don't want to be an average, everyday person.

24. Authentic

I don't want anyone to ever question whether I am being genuine or telling the truth.

25. Novaturient

..about my own life. I never want to settle for good enough. Instead I always want to seek to make a positive change.

26. Observant

I want to take all of life in.

27. Peart

I want to be honestly in good spirits at all times.

28. Romantic

Sure, I want to be a little old school in this sense.

29. Elysian

I want to give you the same feeling that you get in paradise.

30. Curious

And I never want to stop searching for answers.
Cover Image Credit: Favim

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A College Student's Guide To Self-Care 101

A trend on the rise, self-care is becoming more and more prevalent.

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My social media sites have been exploding with mentions of self-care. Tweets about the concept are ever on the rise and I think it is important to explore the concept. Self-care practices have become increasingly common because people are ever interested in tending to their emotional and physical wellbeing.

Unfortunately, with the popularization of the concept comes misconceptions. Self-care is not strictly about "treating yourself" and face masks. Additionally, it encompasses growth, reflection, and change. So, without further adieu, here are my top ten self-care tips!

1. Learn to be by yourself

This one is harder than people would think at first. Everyone's personality is different and, therefore, their affinity to being alone will differ as well. However, as I mentioned before, self-care is not only about physical practices. It is about eliminating toxicity from your life. This means eliminating bad habits, which is achieved through reflection and acknowledgment of the problematic habituation. Being by yourself allows you to set your own goals for yourself without any influence from outside factors. Additionally, the ability to be by yourself aids in establishing good self-esteem and ensures that the relationships you allow in your life are true and special rather than just to pass time.

2. Accept compliments

I don't know how this became normalized or why, but I despise the fact that girls have been taught to downplay their confidence. If someone offers a compliment, smile and accept it. Positive feelings towards yourself should be integral parts of your thought processes. Additionally, pay yourself compliments. They don't have to be said out loud but appreciate the beauty that is your body. It does so much for you, the least you could do is appreciate it every now and then.

3. Hold yourself accountable

Like I said earlier, part of self-care is eliminating bad habits. The tendency to attribute one's own failures and shortcomings to external forces is self-serving bias and those with good self-esteem are guilty of it. It may be difficult to balance attribution and self-esteem but in order to achieve growth, you have to acknowledge your own faults. This will allow for clarity and for you to work towards achieving better habits.

4. Don't bottle up your feelings

I am especially guilty of not following this tip. Keeping to yourself may seem like the easier thing to do and, if you are like anything like me, you may hate being seen as an inconvenience. However, I know that if I bottle up for too long, I tend to shut down and then I won't be able to achieve anything. Expressing your feelings is okay. Crying is okay. Anger is okay. Emotion is okay.

5. Try new things

Take a yoga class. Volunteer. Go to a new restaurant. Anything that pushes you out of your comfort zone incubates growth. You don't even have to enjoy everything you do, you just have to try. However, you may also find a new passion because of it.

6. Get some sleep

Don't spend all your time sleeping and lose all motivation to do anything, but make a conscious effort to get sufficient sleep so that all of your days can be as efficient as possible. You will be more energized and your immune system, as well as your physical appearance, will thank you.

7. Don't force yourself to do things you don't like

I know I said to try new things. However, if your best friend loves running and you go with her one day and find out you HATE it, don't force yourself. Find what works for you through trial and error. You will be much happier with your own flow and it keeps you from developing resentment.

8. Learn to say no

All the women in my life are especially guilty of this. We spread ourselves too thin because we can't say no. This goes hand in hand with not forcing yourself to do things that you don't want to do. Saying no doesn't make you a bitch, it makes you strong and lets people know that you know what you want.

9. Say what you mean

Don't sugarcoat things. It will leave you feeling unfulfilled and, quite frankly, it's exhausting trying to tiptoe around what you really mean. Don't be rude or aggressive, rather assertive and straight forward. It will make you a better communicator and will take pressure off of you as well.

10. Finally, treat yourself

I said self care wasn't entirely about that. I didn't say it wasn't necessary.

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