Time for spring cleaning

Spring is in the air!  The birds are chirping, the tulips are blooming, and everyone wants to get outdoors and experience the fresh air, soak up some Vitamin D, and start up the grill.  But first we must take stock of those things in our homes that we either don’t want anymore or don’t need.  In other words, clear the clutter and move away from stagnation and spring clean.  Throw away some of the “stuff” or have a yard sale (who couldn’t use a few extra dollars!) and then say good-bye to the past and welcome in a new and healthy life.

There are actually two homes that we need to spring clean.  First is our physical home, and second is our physical body.  We tend to accumulate “things” in the form of outdated clothes, magazines, rusted tools and worn out shoes.  Our bodies also accumulate toxins and old food residue that need to be cleaned out.

Our home environment tells a lot about us…the colors we like, type of furnishings and household goods.  Spring clean the home by removing those items that no longer serve you.  Be true to yourself by making your house your home as this is the true reflection of who you really are.  You also need to look at the toxins in your home that you are exposed to on a daily basis.  Some toxins can’t always be controlled but this isn’t the case for everything.

One of the biggest problems in the home environment is Volatile Organic Compounds (VOCs).  These are chemicals found in many of your household items such as paint, furniture, carpeting, mattresses and bedding, cleaning products, and more.  Shower curtains; for example, is one item most can relate to as the smell of a new curtain is powerful.  This smell poisons the air and environment you breathe.  Candles and air fresheners are also adding to the indoor pollutants. And let’s not forget the cosmetics you use daily.  Check your labels for harmful chemicals such as parabens, phthalates and sodium laurel sulfate.

Sounds dismal I know but there are alternative and healthier choices you can make for your environment.  Consider a shower curtain that is 100% polyester – period.  You don’t want one that says added mildew resistance as that more than likely means some other toxin has been added.  Use glass containers instead of plastics.  For cooking, consider using stainless steel or cast-iron.  If possible, remove carpeting and consider hardwood flooring.

In order to spring clean our body, we may consider either cleansing or fasting.  To cleanse our body, we may reduce our food to simple fruits and vegetables, possibly some whole grains, and lots of water.  To fast, we may restrict most foods and drink lots of water, fresh vegetable and fruit juices, and soups.  We may then experience more energy for the body and the mind since less energy is needed for digestion.  Cleansing and fasting can improve concentration, raise spiritual mindfulness, improve our immune function, and encourage better digestion.

Whether you are on a special diet or not, you need to pay attention to the products you choose.  I encourage purchasing foods with only one ingredient such as broccoli or avocados or tomatoes. Consider a variety of colors and experiment with new vegetables or fruit frequently.  Avoiding processed sugary foods will allow you to eat as pure whole foods.  Whole foods are packed with nutrient dense vitamins and minerals, anti-oxidants, healthy fats, and so much more.  Purchase the best quality of food you can afford, and make your kitchen, your Wellness Center.

Let’s not forget to spring clean our heart while we are still in the cleaning mood.  By ridding of negative thoughts and bad habits we will be open to receive all of the good things in life that we deserve.  Get out in the fresh air for a walk or hike.  Join a class in meditation or yoga.  Find an activity that you thoroughly enjoy.  Do something fun and just for you on a daily basis.  Most of all – Smile – a smile will spring clean your soul!