Spring Cleaning: Freshen your surroundings up figuratively, literally


GVL / Meghan Landgren

Maddie Zimmerman

Spring is finally on its way. For many people this can mean several different things.

For some, it’s about finally getting some warm weather, time to travel and seeing loved ones if it’s safe, but what I’m focused on is spring cleaning. Yes, cleaning is boring and a lot of work. I wish I could snap my fingers and have my dorm completely cleaned, but you can’t.

When you hear the words “spring cleaning” 90% of the time you think of literal cleaning and getting rid of old clothes or maybe revamping your room for the new season. But I’m talking about a different kind of cleaning: mental spring cleaning. 

For the new season, there’s a few things you can do to start the warm weather off well. One is taking a break from social media. Coming from a girl who is pretty much addicted to social media, this is probably one of the hardest things for me.

I’d say I use social media the way it was intended to be used: to look at cool outfits, new projects and get ideas for my small jewelry business.

My mom, however, disagrees. Even if I don’t seem stressed while on social media, deep down, everyone truly is. If you jolt everytime you hear a ding from your phone and immediately reach for it, this is stress. If you feel your stomach drop when you see a picture of your friends together when they said they were too busy to hang out with you, this is stress. There are so many underlying stressors when it comes to social media.

We all need a break. Whether it’s from Snapchat, Instagram, or even parents on Facebook, we all need a breather sometimes.

If you’re like me and can’t get rid of these apps completely, then at least take breaks. My favorite YouTuber, Ava Jules, does social media free Sundays. She’s a full time YouTuber and social media influencer, so if she can take a break, so can you.

Next on the list is to get outside. I can’t stress this enough. Every time I feel stressed, overwhelmed or panicky, I just wish it was warm out.

Go for a run, or if you hate running, walk. Being active helps so much. Science shows that working out in any way releases endorphins that boost our mood. So when people say working out helps them relieve stress, it’s actually true.

One of my favorite outside activities is hammocking. You can take a hammock anywhere. They’re affordable only about $30 on Amazon if you look. My boyfriend and I have been going and have realized that the days where it’s nice and we go hammock, we ultimately feel better inside and out. 

Lastly, another mental version of “spring cleaning” is to mend friendships or realize who are truly your friends. Spring is a gateway to summer. Do you really want fake friends this summer? The answer should be no.

You need to take some time to reflect on who’s worth your time and effort and who’s not. If they constantly don’t reach out to you or make excuses to not hang out with you, chances are that they truly aren’t your friend. Spend time with people that reciprocate the same energy.

Also, if you’re like me and don’t feel like you have many friends, (thanks, COVID-19) reach out to people. Everyone wants friends, trust me.

Overall, take time to reflect on what you want to change before heading into Spring. Set up your summer now.