Spring is a great time to usher in something new: a new season, new energy, new ideas, new hopes and dreams. However, if your metaphorical cup is already full, there will be no room in your life for something new. In order to make progress, we have to be willing to let go.
Letting go--releasing old energies, old patterns, old habits, old emotional crap--seems to be the current theme of my life. Maybe yours, too? Perhaps it is my stage of life: my nest is mostly empty, but occasionally the baby birds flock back home, throwing nesting material everywhere and causing both great joy and much chaos. Menopause is approaching--my body senses big changes afoot--but has not yet descended. We are planning our retirement, but are not quite ready to make that huge step. In other words, life is in transition.
In these places and periods of transition, we are the midwives of our new lives. And just as in giving birth to a new baby, there will be pain. But it is not random, senseless pain. It is the focused and productive pain of labor, of stretching ourselves to accommodate something brand new. And it is the pain of letting go. Of loss. Because nothing new can be born without the loss of the old.
So how do we make room for the new? What kind of labor is needed now?
Each of us can look into our own lives, our own hearts and souls, our homes and careers, in order to discover the places where we can let go of the old.
Maybe your closet is stuffed to the gills with clothes that you never wear and don't even like anymore. You can make room for new clothing by getting rid of those old jeans that no longer fit and those blazers with the shoulder pads that you haven't worn since 1989. If your clothes do not reflect the person you are now, or the person you wish to become, then chuck those garments out!
Maybe your kitchen cupboards are filled with old boxes of mac and cheese which expired ten years ago. Are you harboring foods you no longer consume, or no longer wish to consume? Chuck those boxes and bags of refined, processed junk foods and fill your kitchen with fresh herbs, produce, and superfoods to help energize your body, mind, and spirit! You will need nourishment for this pursuit!
Wherever you spend the bulk of your time, analyze the energy in that room. Does the space make you feel happy? Excited? Calm? Depressed? Angry? Exhausted? Is the space cluttered? Or empty and sterile? Does it feel excessively cold? Or claustrophobic? You can change the energy in a room simply by decluttering--removing the objects you no longer need or enjoy. Changing the color of the walls, rugs, paintings, cabinets, etc. can also make a huge impact on the way you feel when you are in that space. Even just rearranging the furniture can create a space that feels new.
Over the next few weeks, I plan to do plenty of spring cleaning: actual cleaning, like washing windows, and metaphorical cleaning, like letting go of old thoughts. I plan to share details about cleaning up the diet, eating more cleansing and detoxing foods, dropping a few pounds, and giving up the things that no longer serve us, whether they be thoughts, plans, jeans, dishes, rituals, habits, addictions, clutter, or something else entirely. I hope you will join me on this journey!