We’ve all got one and sometimes, a little sweeping up is necessary. Life’s been tough, busy or tragic, and we’ve lost the way that we used to be, maybe even as far back as in childhood: light-hearted, curious, empathic and enthusiastic. It’s okay to be tired, or to have come out of the other side of adversity feeling like you’ve lost something – we all do at some point.
But if you recognize that you’re missing your former spark, the essence of you that made you so very unique from the moment of your first breath, it might be time to do a little soul scrubbing. Why not use this time, with spring coming and home organization on the brain, to make some changes and rebirth your spirit?
Are you happy? Why not? Having a job and a family and a roof over your head aren’t the automatic requirements for happiness, as almost anyone can tell you. Consider whether your career is going in the direction you want it to, if you’re happy with how your family runs and treats each other and if you’re not living the life that you want to be.
Ponder deeply what your ideal looks like – your home, work, and time with family and friends. What steps could be taken, so that you get closer to ideal, to blissful?
Look around you
We’ve all had at least one friend or loved ones that sapped us, whether it was emotionally, financially or of time. For your soul’s sake, you need to decide if this relationship has a place in your life, continuing as it is, if it can be mended, or if you should end it.
We’ve also usually had occasion to be the person who took more than they gave. Realize this. If you care about this person, you’ll find a way to reduce your use of them, while increasing your giving toward them.
How do we show others that we love them? We think of them while we’re at the grocery store and buy their favourite cereal, or read the Cat in the Hat for the five thousandth time to our children, and we ask them how their day was. We encourage them to be happy, to pursue interests that inform and excite them, and we congratulate them.
We tell loved ones all the time how special they are to us, through words and actions, and we tend to omit a very important person: ourselves.
Self-acceptance, celebration of accomplishments and encouragement aren’t off-limits to us, just because we’re the ones usually handing it out. Taking pride in something we did well, or choosing to take a class on a subject that we’re excited about is very important – in fact, if you’re always dumbing down your accomplishments and avoiding your own parade, how will you teach your children to take pride in what they’ve done? If you’re always the least important person in a room, how will anyone ever treat you differently?
Celebrate yourself, find a passion, spend time getting to know you and become your own best friend.
Seek out new surroundings and revisit old ones
Finding a quiet place where your thoughts become clearer is paramount to feeling cleansed, renewed and refreshed. Look for hiking trails and get a babysitter for a few hours, then sweat with only your mind as company; visit a farmer’s market, reveling in the colour and effort that went into the nourishing foods before you; weed and plant at your own home or a community garden; visit your church or synagogue. There’s a million ways and places to get out of your own head by getting into it.
What it’s all about
If you’re unhappy, and your soul feels sapped, you can’t be the best you that you want to be. You might find yourself fighting with family and loved ones, lacking energy that you can never quite recover, or feeling as if life has taken you for a ride and you want to get off. Worst, you may end up depressed and feeling like you’re drowning.
Examining what needs to change about your life and habits, taking baby (or giant) steps to change, and finding things that both fulfill you and instill you can fill you with new breath, reviving your soul.