With the days getting longer and the ice getting thinner, it’s important to embrace the energizing sunlight of a new season by looking within, setting intentions and taking action to improve your well-being. Here are a few ideas to help you get started.
1. Clean out Your Space
Take inventory of the things in your atmosphere. Empty a drawer, sort through it, toss the junk, start over. Then do it again – with your closet, your bookshelf, your bathroom cupboard. Be minimalistic. Know what you own and where to find it. It will help you reduce frivolous spending on things you don’t need, become more mindful and most importantly, more grateful for what you have. Besides, as a student, things are temporary now more than ever and you could be on your way to the next destination before you know it. Create space for new energy.
2. Lighten up Your Wardrobe
Don’t scroll past this one just yet – even if you are on a tight budget, there are ways to replenish your wardrobe with the colours of the season if it makes you happier. Thrifting is a game changer, so go on a hunt for bright yellows, lavenders, whites and reds. From a staple tee to a statement necklace or even a new scrunchie, you’re bound to find some pieces that will inspire a ‘look good, feel good, do good’ mentality. Start with the classics like Value Village and Talize, or consider checking out more selective, boutique-style thrift joints like Luster and Oak in Uptown Waterloo, or Plato’s Closet in Kitchener. You should also keep an eye out for various ‘night markets’ popping up around the city this time of year. It’s not materialistic to treat yourself once in a while, you deserve it! But consider purging your current wardrobe first – you’ll surely want to donate some of the old to make room for the new.
Getting your blood flowing, improving your energy levels and pursuing healthier habits is a great way to shake off those winter blues. Consider exploring a new exercise routine! Maybe something outdoors? Why not take an interest in yoga so you can do it in the park under the beaming sun once the ground softens and the air warms? Start running regularly, or even give swimming a try! Take your physical activity regime beyond your comfort zone – there really is no better time than the turn of the season.
4. Give Therapy a Try
Has it been a difficult winter? Maybe this one resonates with you, maybe not – but if you are bouncing back from any mental strain you endured over the last semester, consider reaching out to someone who might be able to help you sort through some of that unwanted tension. You don’t have to be clinically diagnosed with anxiety or depression to benefit from talking to someone about your mental health. Anyone who has tried therapy in the past will likely tell you that it can be a powerful step to regaining your balance and manifesting goals that are right for you. If you’re not sure where to start, consider visiting the University of Waterloo’s Counselling Services facility, or calling the Good2Talk hotline offered for post-secondary students in Ontario. Alternatively, look into community events and support groups, such as the Mental Health Support Group offered every Wednesday evening at EcoCafe in St. Jacobs. Above all, remember that there is no good reason to shy away from self-care.
5. Take Up a New Hobby
Be curious. Take on something new. A new passion project, or a course that will help you to grow in some way Start doing research on something important to you. Look into new volunteer opportunities. Start writing down your thoughts or capturing photographs of things in bloom. Begin something you will be proud of and thankful for a few months from now.
6. Plan Out Your Summer ‘19 Highlights
Don’t waste time overthinking your summer excursions. The more you put it off, the more reasons you will find not to do the things that will make you happy. Plan the vacation. Buy the concert tickets. Book the time off work for that festival you’re dying to attend. You were born to do more than save money and add to your resume. Do something you’ll be glad to remember.
My friends, this one is key: we are already a quarter of the way through 2019. Set time aside to hype yourself up and take it seriously! What have you done recently that you’re proud of? In what ways have you grown? What do you want to accomplish next? Spring offers a much lighter, warmer and gentler time and space to occupy – do your best to fill it with goodness.