Spring Soul Cleansing
I have a wonderful friend that I lived with in college. About once every other month I would come home and find the apartment freshly cleaned with her numerous crystals soaking in a bowl of salt water by the window. Her door would be closed and I could discern by silence or noise if she was napping or organizing her closet. When she finally emerged, I would always know what was coming. "I'm soul cleansing," she would say with gusto, brandishing her detox tea in one hand, burning sage in the other.
Soul cleansing became an expression that was both code word and inside joke, but it was also a real ritual and I still say it today when I'm taking a day for myself. It's exactly what it sounds like: time spent clearing out the cobwebs that build themselves unconsciously in the corners of our minds. Time spent emptying out old patterns and habits to make room for newer, cleaner, higher energy. Time spent cleaning the spaces we occupy; our homes and our bodies. A literal and figurative cleansing of the soul.
With the spring equinox just a week away, now is the perfect time to plan your own version of a soul cleanse. Your cleansing can be whatever feels right for you. Maybe you want to focus just on your eating habits, perhaps getting back to the gym or an activity you love. I suggest a trio: trying something new, doing something that's been on your mind for awhile, and cleaning something out. As with anything, it's important to follow your own path and do things that are enjoyable and make you feel good.
Whatever soul cleansing might mean for you, here are four ideas to get you started.
1. Take 10 minutes to journal.
If I could recommend one thing to kick-start your soul-cleansing it would be journaling. I could go on and on about the benefits of taking the time to write down our thoughts, but in short it's life-changing. Journaling enables us to organize our thoughts and lead ourselves back to our truth. We can bitch and complain and clear out all of our negativity without hurting anyone. Plus, it boosts our immune system and relieves stress. It's really the ultimate soul cleansing all around.
Grab an old notebook and a pen and it in a quiet space by yourself. Start writing down whatever your thoughts are at the moment, even if they seem inconsequential or silly. Don't worry about grammar or spelling or even being neat. Just let your thoughts flow freely onto the page and see where they take you. Write until you feel like you're done. Remember there are no rules to journaling. You could end up writing pages, or just a paragraph. Try it for a week and see how you feel!
2. Clear out the kitchen and go food shopping.
Has there been an old container of leftovers sitting in the back of your refrigerator for a month? Throw it out. Get rid of anything with an expired expiration or that might be starting to mold. Then make a list of foods you want to include in your meals this month. Add fruits, veggies, protein, and grains to your list. If you can, focus on buying organic and local. Steer clear of processed foods and sugary drinks. Remember that we're cleaning out our bodies by filling them up with healthy foods. Make sure you're not restricting yourself. Food should be fun!
3. Try a private yoga class.
I have to recommend trying a private yoga session. As a yoga teacher, I am always blown away by the difference I can make in a private session versus a regular class. Although it may sound daunting, in a private class there is literally no where for our ego to hide. All of our insecurities come pouring out, and we become aware of any pessimistic energy we've may have been holding onto. By the end of class we feel light, blissful, and truly empty of any negativity. Yoga is an amazing tool to break down walls we've built up over time and reveal our authentic self underneath. Private sessions with a yoga instructor don't have to cost you a lot, either. Ask around at your local studio, or check on a site like Groupon for a deal.
4. Clean out your closet, and donate your old clothes.
One thing that's on my list this spring is to clean out my closet and donate my old clothes. It takes time to go through a wardrobe and decide what to give away, but it's worth it to get uncluttered and make space for something new. Not to mention donating is good for the environment. Something you're giving away could make a stranger's day. It's also tax deductible! After donating check out what your local thrift store has to offer. Someone else's donation might make your day. Karma is a wonderful thing.
What are you planning for your spring soul cleansing? What are your favorite ways to clear out the old and make room for the new? Did any of these suggestions spark your interest? Let me know in the comments below!