Spring is the best time of year for out with the old and in with the new. Along these lines, you may be taking the time to physically clean out your living space, pack up winter gear, and prepare for the warmer climate. You may also be thinking of dusting the house and opening up some windows to let a breath of fresh air through the house. These are all great things to plan as you prepare to transition from winter to spring. This time of year is also a great opportunity for personal transformation.
The symbolism of rebirth and new life that is synonymous with the beginning of spring holds true to your state of mind. Take this time to assess where you are in your day-to-day routines and mindsets, and decide what’s working and what’s not. Once you create this awareness, you can replace the routines and mindsets that no longer serve you with routines and habits that support a refreshed version of yourself.
To help you on your way, here are five tips to identify, assess, and let go of old mindsets and make room for new ones that will support positive changes in your life.
1. Make Time and Space for Yourself
This may seem like a no-brainer when it comes to the nature of self-assessment, but it’s important to be intentional about this given how our culture operates in the over planned, too-busy mode.
Time and space doesn’t just mean to make time for yourself and the things you love to do. In order to get into a deeper state of self-awareness, you’ll want to set aside time without distractions—to detach from the nonstop electronic and social demands on daily life. Therefore, this also means to carve out the time away from your smart phone, access to social media, and steady stream of texts, calls, and emails. When you are at the mercy of notifications, it means you are living according to someone else’s agenda. When you detach from these things, you are in charge of your time.
Along with dedicating the time, find a space where you feel comfortable, motivated, or inspired. The start of Spring is a great time use the outdoors as that space. Being in nature has the added bonus of allowing you to ground yourself and reconnect with a simpler form of yourself.
2. Take Inventory
Now that you have the time and space for yourself, start to take inventory of where you are in life. Ask yourself:
- What’s working in my life, and what’s not?
- What could be improved?
- What do I really want?
- What may be holding me back from that which I really want?
As you go through these questions, consider any roadblocks that are keeping you from being where you want to be. Don’t be afraid to be honest with yourself in identifying where those roadblocks are coming from—whether externally or within your own state of mind. Often the things that hold us back are our own fears or doubts, such as:
- Lack of self-worth
- Lack of confidence
- Lack of motivation
- Feeling overwhelmed
- Fear of failure
- Fear of commitment to yourself
- Fear of rejection
- Lack of patience
- Fear of asking for help
Write down any limiting beliefs about yourself that may be a roadblock for your personal growth. Make a list of the all the things that you would like to work on and another list of all the mental roadblocks that hold you back your full potential.
3. Set Your Intention
Setting your intention is the practice of conscious action in your life. Your intention can help to guide your every actions as you move through your days, so the outcome is not left up to chance.
Take your inventory of areas for self-improvement and growth, and dream big in terms of where you want to be.
Then, write out steps for how you’ll get there or draw out a map of how you’ll achieve the dream state of yourself. Make sure to reference your plan every morning to ensure your actions are aligned with your intention and leading you to your goals.
4. Stay Positive
During your transformation, you may find yourself feeling overwhelmed, unmotivated, or in a progress plateau. Remember not to beat yourself up when this happens. Setbacks are a normal part of the process.
Instead, take a deep breath, relax, and give yourself a minute to pull out your journal and write down all the progress you have made and the things that you are grateful for. When you highlight the things that you appreciate in life, it allows you to gain perspective and to create positive energy.
If you find yourself in a negative downward spiral, try a positivity sandwich. This is where you’ll write down your negative thoughts and self-talk patterns. For each negative thing you say about yourself, you must write down two positive and constructive thoughts related to it. As you begin writing down what constructive thought patterns look like, you’ll begin practicing them more regularly.
To create more positive thinking and actions in your life, immerse yourself in inspirational mediums such as books, podcasts, and nature.
5. Take Care of Your Body
It may seem that when it comes to refreshing your mindset all focus should be within your mind, but it’s important to not overlook your body. Any personal endeavor requires a balance between nurturing your mind and engaging your body. When too much focus is placed on one and not the other, the imbalance is cause for distraction from your intent.
While focusing on using your mind for introspection and intention setting is important, you should also make the time to move your physical body. How you accomplish the physical activity is not as important as simply making sure to get consistent activity on a daily basis—whether by walking, swimming, running, dancing, or practicing tai chi or yoga.
As you go forward to refresh your mindset for spring, remember that the most important thing you can do is to start your practice—even if it’s just one small step—and keep at it one day at a time.
Get the resources you need to create the new life you envision with The Chopra Center’s Discover Your Purpose Toolkit, which includes a free e-book, worksheet, 1:1 discovery session, and guided meditation. Get your free toolkit now.