Spring cleaning checklist: 6 areas of your life that might be weighing you down

If you’re bracing yourself for some tips on juice cleanses, relax. I’ve done every juice cleanse on the planet and they have all ended with a concave stomach but a heavy heart. Why? Unless you cleanse other aspects of your life weighing you down beyond your belly bulge, a juice cleanse will leave you lighter (temporarily) but not necessary fulfilled. I’m not saying don’t juice cleanse on occasion, just don’t expect it to solve all your problems.

Below are my life cleansing tips to help you cleanse in springtime, or anytime. You can call it a spring cleaning checklist. I hope they help you enjoy life more fully by lightening the load you carry.

1. Your wardrobe

Do you wake up in the morning, stare at an overly stuffed closet and think,”I have nothing to wear?” More often than not options are in front of us but we can’t see them because there’s too much stuff in the way. I recently had a style session with Style Cab. We started by removing everything from my closet – that was a scary sight. I had tough decisions to make: if I hadn’t worn it in a few years, and couldn’t envision myself wearing it that day, it got chucked. We made piles, then created outfits and put them back, one at a time, perfectly hung and ready to wear. I kept sentimental things, but the rest got donated. When we were done, I felt like a fresh new me had just gone shopping in my own closet. Better still, I felt mentally revived. Clearing the physical clutter around us can have a powerful effect on mental clarity.

2. Your friendships

Look around you. Look in your diary. Check your WhatsApp. Who do you spend the most amount of time with? Do these people love and support you authentically? Good friends should wish for your success and not secretly be happy if you fail. Really think about it: is there one person in your life who may harbor unkind feelings towards you, like jealousy, and having them around isn’t good for your soul? Jealousy is the single most destructive yet prevalent emotion in our lives. Banish it in yourself and stay far away from friends who are jealous of your success.

3. Your kitchen cupboard

Clean your pantry of the junk that may seem tasty in the moment, but leaves you feeling bloated and lousy. Be honest with yourself, you know what foods I’m talking about. If it is not around, it is not an option, so get rid of it. (Read more about cleaning out the junk in a recent post I wrote with tips on changing your diet forever).

Beyond clearing out the not-so-good-for-you foods, when was the last time you went through your canned goods, cereals and even freezer items and threw away the one’s that have expired or become freezer burned? I recently went through my pantry and found a ridiculous amount of stale and expired stash. It felt so good to throw things away and make room for new groceries.

4. Your cellulite

Now this one’s just mean, isn’t it? But surely you know what I’m talking about. When you feel self-conscious in a bathing suit, or a little summer dress, you feel held back don’t you? My favorite workout ever to get into summer shape efficiently is Physique 57. We just hosted one of their teachers, the fabulous Julie Cobble, in Hong Kong at an exclusive event with The Landmark Mandarin Oriental – try her cardio class here for a killer workout and some smiles.

It would be nice if there was a quick fix to your best body. But we all know that long term fitness requires a persistent commitment to exercise and diet and simultaneously an acceptance of where you are in the moment. If you really desire to see change in your body, make sure you set an elevated (and realistic) vision of where you want to be. Then create an achievable plan – and stick to it. Nothing is worse than wishing for something and not being prepared to work for it. Then all you’re left with is guilt.

5. Your guilt

Speaking of guilt, I’m reading a great book right now called The Bitch In Your Head: How to finally squash your inner critic. I feel a little guilty just reading a book with such a title, especially when at a cafe or in front of my children. Nevertheless, I find myself nodding through Dr. Jacqueline Hornor Plumez’s discussions on body image, parenting, marriage and dating, lingering phobias and worries that keep us up at night. Guilt weighs so heavily on our hearts. Banish your guilt by taking control of your thoughts and steering your mind towards a healthier inner dialogue.

6. Your habits

Springtime is a good time to revisit your goals. Do your daily habits support the direction you’d like your life to take? Be honest with yourself.

The rituals that we engage in everyday shape who we are.

If you grab a sugary muffin every morning, chances are you have a muffin top. If you practice yoga every day, chances are you are more flexible than most. The best way to get rid of bad habits is to replace them with better ones. Used to sipping a glass of wine after dinner every night? Try sipping hot water and lemon instead. The list goes on. Tony Robbins talks passionately about rituals in this short video below.

Set an elevated standard for your body, your physical and mental health, your relationships and your career.

The direction that our life takes is largely shaped by the small things that we do every single day.

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