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by Jen Hyland, RMT

Every spring, I use the energy from longer days to start a long-term, positive change for myself. One year, I got up early each Saturday for a long hike, and watched the landscape slowly fill in. Four years ago, I let go of my attachment to a secure office job and moved into my current role as a Registered Massage Therapist.  Last year, I renewed my relationship with my naturopath – we started to slowly work on health problems that had bothered me for years. Together we’ve worked through my nutritional balance, hormonal problems, and my body feels more and more like my own.

In North America, a traditional spring reset is to refresh your space. Instead of just doing your traditional spring cleaning, consider bringing the outdoors inside – a few twigs in a vase, or an early flower floating in a glass. Research shows that spending time in nature or looking at representations of nature can help with anxiety, productivity, attention, and healing times (Clay, 2001).  After a winter of decluttering, my space is ready for more nature.  With limited sunlight, my plants are getting a little bit droopy. Their Easter present will be a little bit of plant food and opening curtains to let them soak in the sun.

For my  friends and family, springtime is when we renew our time together. Longer days make it easier to stay out chatting, or to help each other garden. In winter I can get restless and impatient. So in spring, when I have the energy to listen and cherish my loved ones, I like to have people over to my tiny apartment, where we can spill on to the balcony on a warm afternoon.

 This year, my selfish plan is to feed my passions. It’s a series of small promises, instead of one big goal: more time writing, more yoga practice, and more time outdoors. I’ve already gotten back to my yoga practice, and stopping by the lake (looking at nature) before coming into Lakeside.

How will you use longer days to refresh and re-balance your life?