Spring cleaning isn't just for the closet and garage! Our self-care routines also need a little check-in and refresh every now and again. Check out these simple ways you can refresh your mind and body this spring to feel like your best, most awesome self!
7 Tips to Spring Clean Your Routine
1. Spring Clean your make-up bag and ditch the fragrance, parabens, and phthalates
One of our biggest exposures to environmental toxins is actually our personal care products. The average woman uses about 12 products per day, exposing her to more than 168 ingredients. With little to no regulation in the personal care industry, we are often unknowingly dousing our skin in dangerous chemicals.
It can be overwhelming to remember everything to avoid so start with these top offenders: fragrance/parfum, parabens and phthalates. These are linked with hormone disruption, fertility issues, skin irritation, allergies, and certain cancers (1)
No need to dump everything out and start fresh (unless you're really motivated), but simply replace items as you run out with a safe and effective alternative. One step at a time, ya'll!
The brands I trust to never use those ingredients (and many more) include Beautycounter, Primally Pure and Fatco.
2. Stick to the Clean 15 and Dirty 12
Reduce your exposure to pesticides and herbicides without busting your grocery budget! Each year, the Environmental Working Group (@environmentalworkinggroup) releases a report called the Clean Fifteen and Dirty Dozen, ranking produce not only on exposure to pesticides, but also on how much remains on the product after it gets to you and you wash it. (2) The Clean 15 lists fruits and veggies you're generally safe purchasing conventionally. The Dirty Dozen is where you should prioritize your dollar and purchase organic varieties, as these products contain the highest concentrations of pesticides.
Top of the 2018 Clean 15 list? Avocados!
Top of this 2018 Dirty Dozen list? Strawberries and spinach!
3. Move outside for 15 minutes everyday
Feeling stuck in a rut? Bored of the rain? Cheers yo.
But did you know taking time to move outside, even just a few days a week can vastly reduce seasonal depression and increase the release of serotonin (that feel good mood enhancing neurotransmitter)? Exercising outdoors has been shown to not only improve overall health, but also improve immune function, mood, creativity, and focus, which makes the time you spend at your desk more productive and enjoyable.
So if you're feeling a little run down mid afternoon, take your coffee break outside and walk around the block.
Looking to boost your exercise routine and get outside? Come hangout with me over at Portland Outdoor Fitness. We take over Alberta Park almost everyday and would love to see you there :)
4. Drink water first thing every morning (yes, even before your coffee).
Refresh your morning routine by starting your day with a tall, cool glass of water!
Hydrating first thing kickstarts your digestive system, waking up your body and mind. For an added bonus add a pinch of sea salt and splash of apple cider vinegar or squeeze of lemon. Sea salt contains important electrolytes, helping you stay hydrated and energized throughout the day. The ACV or lemon encourages those digestive juices to start flowing, making your breakfast easier to digest.
I make a little acv, sea salt and water concotion the night before and leave it by the coffee pot, so when im up in the morning I dont even have to think about it!
5. Take a digital detox
It’s so easy to get sucked into our phones and computers. Not just for social media fun, but for also email, work, web md rabbit hole etc. It can be exhausting, really in all ways. It also negatively impacts your sleep especially if you find yourself checking email at 2am or scrolling instagram when you can’t sleep. Sound familiar? it may be time to shake up that routine!
Here are a couple ways to disconnect from your phone at night:
- Turn your phone to airplane mode when you go to bed. Don’t worry, your alarm clock will still work, but you wont be bothered by pings of texts and emails.
- Need to be reachable in case of emergency? Try turning your phone to Do Not Disturb instead. You can choose hours you don’t want to be pinged, but those on your favorites list can still reach you.
- Put your phone on the other side of the room! Avoid the temptation to scroll and you're more likely to not press the snooze button in the morning.
6. Make time to play
"Schedule your play time. Seriously. Put it in your calendar." This is one of the most consistent homework assignments I get from my business coach.. And when I do it, which I've gotten MUCH better about, the whole world feels lighter, I'm a happier human, and I actually get more work done during my "business hours."
It's so easy to get wrapped up in the anxiety of work; be it homework, literal home work, work-work, or life work. I feel all those pretty intensely as a small business owner, constantly wanting to learn more, while mothering an amazing toddler, trying to be a good partner, and keep our house standing.
There's always more work to be done. Really. I get it. But if we don't make time to play, we never get to enjoy the fruits of our labor. Plus, that playtime allows for some creative energy to develop that you can turn around and funnel into your work.
So grab your calendar. Schedule in your play time, be it 15 minutes, an afternoon, or a whole day!
7. Let it go
Let shit go that isn't serving you.
I'm not talking about stuff per se, though that could totally be part it.
But take a moment to analyze your routine, your social situations, your work life etc. Are there obligations you dread? People that make you feel icky? Workouts you feel like you *should* complete, do, and then still don't feel great? Foods you think to you HAVE to eat, but hate from the bottom of your toes?
Let it go. Really. Don't do something only out of sheer obligation.
Instead, make a conscious effort to surround yourself with people, habits, foods, environments that bring you JOY. Bonus: when you're joyful, you bring joy to others. It's cute like that.