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Spring Cleaning for the Soul

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One day you open your front door and you are greeted by the signs of spring. You notice that the daffodils and crocuses are in full bloom. The air around you feels noticeably lighter. The natural world and all its creatures step forward to begin the process of rebirth. You take a deep breath and feel exhilarated! Every smell is warm and inviting. Day emerges from the shadows of winter, lasting longer and casting a green-gold glow on all that is touched. Yes, on this day you realize that spring has come! Perhaps you will be transported back in time to a memory of a spring day as a child. Suddenly you feel energized and ready to face the coming days with renewed desire and enthusiasm.

Many of us welcome spring with annual rituals. We often feel a strong urge to freshen up, organize and change the environment in which we live… namely our home. I would like to suggest that as you begin spring cleaning, whatever that may involve, you seriously consider making time for yourself and doing a spring cleaning of the soul. Approaching this annual event on a holistic level will involve your entire body, mind and spirit in the renewal process.

Thomas Moore in Care of the Soul said: “It is impossible to define exactly what the soul is. The soul is not a thing but a quality or dimension of the experience of life and ourselves. The soul is aligned with love, caring, authenticity, connection, compassion, intimacy and inner communication. Simple gestures that seem to take place on the surface of life can be central to the soul.”

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In the hectic schedules of our modern lives, we often forget our need to connect with Spirit on a very personal level, and that’s when our problems begin. All too often we get buried under situations, events and emotions. Over time, this little pile of experiences gets bigger and heavier. We start gasping for air. Finally, we can feel a sense of loss, as if a part is missing. We feel a longing for something, but we can’t exactly name what that something is. Solutions that used to work for us are no longer effective coping strategies. All of these things happen because we lose that connection to our true selves.

When we take the time to look deep within ourselves and start sorting through the clutter, we start digging our way back to the surface. Our self-image is programmed into our mind and memories, creating a reflection of who we think we are. This image begins to form early in life and often builds on the good intentions of others – parents, spouse, children, friends. Over time we grow and develop. What was once necessary may now no longer be needed and can actually impede real progress in staying connected to who we really are. While it is never easy to look closely in the mirror because we may not like what we see, it is an essential task if we are to discover the true meaning and purpose of our existence. Clean up this season by following some of the personal spring cleaning tips below.

Personal tips for spring cleaning

Soul searching is a term one hears occasionally when searching for answers. I have heard that the terminology is more likely to be used in connection with a person who has gotten into some sort of trouble and the competent authority is suggesting in a very strong way that the person had better do a soul searching! The checklist below provides suggestions as you begin the search for your true self, which may be buried deep within the foundation of who you are. There is nothing in the tips that you are hearing for the first time. It’s not about blinding you with new ideas, it’s simply an opportunity to remind you of some useful strategies as you reconnect with Spirit

Pay attention:

What feelings or emotions create stress? The first step in any growth process is to accurately identify the problem. The question to ask yourself is: Is there an ongoing emotional state or mood that I am stuck in and cannot find a satisfactory solution to? Without knowing the true cause, one is only grasping at straws in the search for a solution.

Search for meaning:

After identifying the problem, it becomes necessary to find the meaning associated with it. In this step we need to experience the feelings here and learn their meaning, only then will we be able to make changes in our behavior and attitudes.

Repattern deprecated behavior:

When we think about the state we are in and the meaning that it entails, we need to examine our current reactions. Old patterns usually prove ineffective and do little to resolve the conflicting states we find ourselves in, forcing us to create new patterns. When the old techniques don’t work anymore, we have to stop spinning. Through this reflection on past events and openness to the future, we are empowered by the insights and understanding we have gained through our struggles.

Suggestions to change old behavior patterns:

1. Appreciate: Be thankful, express appreciation, give thanks.

2. Revise your assumptions

3. Energize Yourself – Take the time to attend to your needs in a way that helps you connect to them

Your feelings, emotions, body and mind

4. Replace negative self-talk: Use positive imagery and affirmations

5. Feel the connection to each and every thing in the universe

6. Visualize what you desire

7. Let go and let go of what is not serving you in a beneficial way

Choose your setting:

Choose to replace feelings of helplessness and doubt with feelings of empowerment and connection with your higher self

The search for who we really are is a lifelong journey of discovery. It is a path strewn with many emotions, struggles, and opportunities to learn our own particular lessons of truth that resonate within each of us. Through this ongoing process of self-enquiry, we are able to transform the meaningless into meaningful and find peace, happiness and the divine in all that surrounds us! So why not prepare for a deep spiritual spring cleaning this time?

Thanks to Susan A. Anderson

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