Forget Spring cleaning. Sometimes it feels like every month is a time for cleansing. It could be as frequent as every week for me. Naturally, when I say cleansing, I don't mean "cut out sugar" or "juice cleanse" or "gluten free for a week." I'm into all of that too, but this isn't a food and health related exercise. This is more of a cleanse o' soul, cleanse o' mind-frame, cleanse o' paradigm. A re-centering of sorts. Is that the word? Alright, scrap "cleansing." Centering. Let's get our "center" on for a minute.
What does that even mean? Well, since I'm not an expert, it can mean whatever I want it to mean and the same goes for you. Achieving a state of mindfulness, returning to your emotional roots, remembering who you really are. So much gets in the way of where we are going, especially where we have been. I'm not knocking the past, but, in order to move ahead, I often have to remove the emphasis from "what happened" to "where I've been taken" - up to now. Centering is simple. Or, rather, it's in the simplicity where I find myself most centered. Here's my guide. My non-expert's guide.
1. Find the fog. Go for long walks in the thickness of morning. Early enough that you feel ahead. Late enough to grab coffee on the way back home.
2. Don't pass it by. If you see something different on the street, stop for a minute. Be curious about what people are doing.
3. Follow written instructions and use your hands to make something beautiful. If it tastes good, it's even better.
4. Get lost in something warm, like a cozy sweater that might be a little too big. Write a letter to a friend. Maybe an old friend or a past love. No one says you have to send it.
5. Bike to work. Even if the commute will take 2x the amount of time it would take if you drove or took public transportation. Everything looks different from here, at this height and angle. Wear a helmet!
7. Accept an invitation to a party. You may only know the host and you might not have a date. Going solo is a great way to face your fears in an engaging environment. Talk to a stranger, even if you don't initiate. Accept an invitation to say hello and the rest will follow.
8. Clear your surfaces. This isn't just about dusting. Go through the piles that have accumulated. Yes, your books are dusty, but really, they just need to breathe, like you and me.
9. Take a long drive and stop many times along the way (not just for the bathroom). Get out of the car, checking out the view. Auto pilot is a real threat. Of course, it's something to utilize in certain circumstance, but not when there's beauty right in front of you.
10. Take a silly picture of yourself. Make a funny face, capturing the pureness of being with yourself. You might feel goofy and like a child again. Such fun to tap into that, though. We spend so much time being serious. Laugh at yourself, feeling safe in your very own sense of humor. No one is watching or judging. It's all you.