A Personal Spring Cleansing

“I believe the art of living consists not so much in complicating simple things as in simplifying things that are not.” – François Hertel

With the arrival of spring comes the impulse for a fresh new start. Spring is an excellent time to do a cleansing for your body and mind, to shed the old energies of the dark time of year and move forward into the season of new growth.

One way to cleanse your body is to fast. If you have any ongoing health issues, check with your health care provider or healer before you proceed. There are many different types of fasts: you might do a brief water-only fast, you can do a juice fast for two or three days, or there are longer fasts like the ten-day Master Cleanse. Do some research before you decide.

If fasting doesn’t appeal to you, you can still cleanse your body. Eating raw foods will help you detoxify your digestive system. Or you can simply add more greens and sprouts to your diet. Take a break from sugar and processed foods for a week or so. Have fresh fruit smoothies for breakfast. Whatever cleansing method you choose, notice how you feel. You may actually be extra tired or sluggish for a day or two, as the toxins are released from your system. Stick with it and notice when you start to feel better and have more energy.

Another type of fast is a media fast. Take a few days or a week and turn off the electronics – no TV, radio, or internet (aside from what you may need for your work). Avoid listening to or reading the news. Let yourself just be. If possible, avoid people who tend to be very negative or spread gossip. Without expectations, take a break from complaining. Again, notice how you feel. Do you sense a difference in your mood?

If you want to go even deeper, be silent for a day. Choose a day when you don’t have to work or care for kids. If you can’t get away for a full day, try a couple of hours. Go without speaking, reading, or watching TV. Instead, nurture yourself in simple ways: nap, take a bath, walk in the woods, play with clay or beads or fabric. Observe nature, perhaps watching the birds or the clouds. Prepare a delicious and healthy meal for yourself and savor it slowly.

When you re-enter your usual routine, take your time. Don’t automatically reach for the remote or a bowl of ice cream. Do those things if you want, but be more mindful of what you’re doing and why. Let the after-effects of your cleanse flow delightfully through your psyche. Gently prepare yourself, with patience and love, for the quicker pace of spring and summer.

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