With the beginning of spring and the days getting longer, we hope you’ve been able to get out and enjoy the sunshine! What a nice reprieve from the grays of winter. We’ve all been like spring chicks chirping around here about how nice it’s been to open up our houses and let a fresh breeze go through to change out the stagnant air. There’s also a laundry list of things to do to get ready for spring outdoors; raking last year’s leaves, cleaning up after your critters, etc. As well as the list of stuff to do inside: changing the smoke detector batteries, laundering the window treatments, dusting ceiling fans, etc.
What if part of your spring cleaning were to evaluate and clean your life? What if you sat down and made a list of some cleansing that you would like to do for your body, soul, and psyche? Here’s one simple example: are you holding on to old clothes because you’re afraid of gaining the weight back? Get rid of them! You have done so well, and you’re never looking back again. Besides, you’ve got us and the program under your belt!
A more complex example would be relationships: are you nourishing friendships with people that are more caustic to you than good? Take a step back and evaluate what is going to be best for you and your ability to make positive lifestyle changes. As we mentioned in February’s newsletter, self-care is an integral part of your weight management success. It may be time to make new friends that are more like-minded in your health-centered focus. Some ways to make these connections are through local gyms, or just on the trails you walk your dogs on! Get out there, you’re worth meeting!
Lastly, take a look at your kitchen. Are the foods in your pantry or cabinets hindering your success? Remember, your family members (aka: children, spouse) do not need to eat junk food, either. If you find that your cabinets are not “program-friendly” you may want to spring clean that too. Donate foods to the food bank bin at the grocery store; don’t feel compelled to throw them out. You can also give foods to your neighbors and friends.
We all know and relish the good feeling of having a clean and organized home: the relief from the dust on furniture, and dust bunnies collecting in the corners of the room. The ease from the unfolded laundry taking up space in your bedroom, and the satisfaction of a clean kitchen after a great meal. Supreme relaxation begins for some of us when our mind space isn’t taken up with these seemingly mundane tasks.
However, sometimes those simple tasks can derail even the best laid plans and cause undue stress on our psyche. Clutter and disorganization in our environment creates the same problems in our mind. If your “to do” list is extremely long and arduous, then you’re probably overwhelmed. When we get overwhelmed with choices and decisions we tend to not be productive in any capacity. We choose to do nothing, rather than taking things in stride. This same concept can be applied to other aspects in our life, such as weight loss.
It would make sense that getting organized can help with weight loss, as well. You are less at risk of clutter tripping you up causing injury, helps to reduce bacteria and germs which leads to illness and can make it easier to find gear for exercise and physical activity when you’re motivated. In a recent article in the New York Times entitled ” A Clutter Too Deep for Mere Bins and Shelves,”1 Dr. Pamela Peeke, author of the book “Fit to Live,” was quoted amusingly as saying, “If you can’t find your sneakers, you aren’t taking a walk,”. Dr. Peeke often suggests to those patients trying to lose weight to try to work on creating a single uncluttered space in their home.