Spring 2014: Spring Cleaning…Your life!


By Katelyn Billings

Some say that springtime is a fresh start, a new beginning or a chance to start over. This upcoming spring term is a perfect opportunity to start over and make new, better changes in your life.

We all have things we would like to change about ourselves. Whether in regards to personal health or behavior, each of us have our own set of bad habits. For some, it may be procrastination, others nail biting or still others the tendency to eat poorly.

With a new season of change upon us, now is the time to “spring clean” these bad habits for a happy and healthy U.

1. Procrastination.

Perhaps the most irritating and unstoppable habit there is. Being a procrastinator myself, I know how vicious the cycle can be, and it can be found anywhere.

Schoolwork, laundry, cleaning, calling your mom back …

Constantly putting everything off until later causes your to-do list to become overwhelming and then crash down around you in a frustrating mess.

Yet, even if you manage to finish everything you procrastinated that paper due in five weeks or that pile of laundry always seems to resurface, perpetuating the cycle.

Of course, the first answer when asking how to combat procrastination is, “Well, why don’t you just start everything sooner?”

But I’m betting that, first of all, the person who asked that doesn’t go to Union, and, second, that person has no idea how busy you are on some days.

So what are my suggestions? Make a physical list, set strict deadlines for yourself and identify things that waste your precious time.

Avoiding things such as coffee runs and inordinate amounts  of BuzzFeed quizzes and Facebook stalking can really help you get things done in a reasonable amount of time.

Personally, I always carry around a small notebook that is just filled with lists of things I need to do.

If I stick to my schedule and cross off each thing I complete, I find that I can get my work and other tasks done in a reasonable amount of time, and I know exactly when and where I need to do things.

Staying organized is a great way to stay on top of everything, and following a rigid schedule will keep you on track throughout the week.

2. Try something new!

A great way to jumpstart your spring is to try something new. Change in one aspect of your life fosters change in all others as well, so be adventurous and try new experiences whenever you get the chance. It gives your brain a new challenge, and maybe you’ll keep whatever you changed and it will become a permanent part of your life.

It could be as simple as trying to be a vegetarian for a day or finding a new outdoorsy passion such as running (the Run, Ribs and Reggae 5K is coming up!), Ultimate Frisbee or something along the lines of writing an article for the Concordy (shameless plug)! The possibilities are endless.

Exposing yourself to new experiences outside of your comfort zone can be daunting at first, but sometimes the rush of a new experience is exhilarating and could even become one of your new favorite hobbies!

3. Clean it out.

If you’re like me, your desk has become a place where old flyers, past exams and clutter have all accumulated. Recently, I found an exam from last spring term … Not only is it old, but it followed me from my old room! That’s pretty bad.

A serious clean-out session is a sure-fire way to get rid of trash and clutter that is just taking up space.

A good mentality when engaging in extreme spring cleaning is to organize into piles according to importance: keep, throw away or give to Mom.

The keepers are obviously the things you either use regularly or will use in the near future.

The trash pile is stuff that you don’t know why you still have and will not be using again.

The other items in limbo, such as those proud ‘A’ papers and assignments, should be sent to Mom to archive.

An organized desk space aids in staying calm because now you definitively know where everything is and how to approach your leftover schoolwork at the end of each term.

This ensures that you consistently stick to an organizational system and, more importantly, one that works for you.

Hopefully with these little suggestions you will be able to work on your habits, organization skills and personal life.

A clean and organized space results in a happy and healthy mindset. Happy spring cleaning!



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