I don't know about you, but I am more than ready for Spring this year! I love that we are getting little snippets of it, lighter mornings and evenings, daffodils and crocuses popping up and the odd warm and sunny day.... Bring it on.
I think this keen-ness for Spring has something to do with being in the sandwich generation. It can be pretty full on at times and I have just had a particularly exhausting 7 or 8 months of it. You know, where you have teenage challenges and ailing oldies, add to that a decent sprinkling of illness in various shapes, plus the odd job loss and dying relative thrown in?
There have been moments when I have had to be quite brutal with my time and my priorities and have learnt to say 'No' more, where I would previously have said 'Yes'. ( I have found this to be a pretty useful strategy in general, to be honest! ) I definitely feel of an age where I want quality over quantity and this goes for how I spend my time and energy, as well as how I like my chocolate!
In fact, while I was feeling overwhelmed with life and wondering how on earth I was going to fit everything in, I decided to have a serious rethink what things/people/ activities I want around me.
I remember my mum always used to have a spring clean of the kitchen every year, emptying out all the cupboards and cleaning the shelves. Does anybody do that anymore?! I'm keeping my cupboards well and truly shut - (not going there just yet,) but I have been having a 'Spring Clean' or a de-clutter in other areas of my life instead. I've done this technique with my wardrobe before, but never seriously applied it to other areas of my life. I have missed a trick there, as it is useful, cathartic and liberating!
I shared this concept recently with the members of my Life ReBoot group and since talking about it, I have heard so many stories of people feeling overwhelmed and tired, it feels like it is everywhere. So it is now time to spread the Spring Clean love further afield, for fellow Sandwichees or busy people to benefit from it. Here is the principle:
Choose the area of your life you wish to Spring Clean, e.g in-box; wardrobe; time management. I'm choosing diary/time management for this example.
It's best to do this when you have an hour of (hopefully) uninterrupted time (it will save at least that much in the longer term!)
1. Identify how much time you have to work with, e.g are you looking at 9-5, 6-10pm or the weekend
2. Have a realistic look at what you currently do during that time, writing it out helps
3. List all the non-negotiable things you want to keep/start doing
4. List the 'possibles', things you MIGHT want to do or are nice to have
5. Ditch anything which makes you feel crappy or doesn't have a practical application - just guessing but this often involves technology!
6. Add in some flex to allow for delays/travel/cups of tea etc
Do the sums and see if you are in credit - i.e. you have some time spare, or if you are in debit - too many things to fit into the amount of time you have (may need to rethink this one!)
You have now done a successful Spring Clean of your diary!
Let me know how you get on with it. I love getting your messages saying what worked and what didn't. Also, if you have a problem with something in your life related to wellbeing, let me know and I might write the next blog just for you!