Stuck winter energies can sap our vitality and leave us feeling pretty low. Thatís where these tips come in handy. When we make our homes feel fresh and positive, hopeful and refreshed, we feel that way, too–and we donít need a lot of time or money to do it. Find out ten simple ways to fill your space with the good energy of spring, here:
1. Move Things Around: Hereís a quick–and totally free–fix for winter stuck-energy: try moving things around! Spring is all about changing your perspective and inviting the hope of positive new life in. How to do that in your home? Just try rearranging one or two pieces of furniture–or changing the placement of a rug or painting. Shake up your old patterns and habits by changing the traffic flow in a room, or encourage seeing things differently by switching the positions of pictures or other accents that have always been in one place.
2. Make an Intention Corner: Give some thought to what you want to bloom and grow in your life this growing season and begin to imagine it. Cut out pictures that express what you hope to create or do and make a small collage. Then make a special place to honor it. This doesnít need to be elaborate: a shelf with space for a beeswax candle and some object from nature–a stone, a shell, a cup of flowers–are all ways of giving positive energy to our plans and projects. And when we create places in our homes for the unfolding of our soul-processes, we make our homes feel more connected to our spirits, and we make an inner connection to the world of nature that is beginning to bud and grow outside.
3. Quick Pick-Up: Just because we may not have time for a major spring-cleaning, that doesnít mean our homes couldnít use a little clearing-out of stuff that adds to clutter rather than pleasure. Try the Just One Step approach: every day, pick up just one thing that no longer “sings” to you and donate it, give it away, or put it in a storage area for later.
4. Clarify the View: Windows are the eyes of our homes, and by the end of winter, they can be pretty grungy inside. It can take less than five minutes to wash the inside of a window: just mix up a batch of this vinegar-based Window Cleaning Formula and spritz it on. Wipe off with a soft lint-free cloth and finish drying with old newspapers for a streak-free, fresh new outlook for your home.
5. Air it Out: It may not be warm enough where you live to start opening windows, but you can close off one room at a time (so you donít waste energy) and open a window for a few minutes to release stale winter air and invite freshness in. Nothing smells as sweet as fresh air.
6. Lighten Up: Explore some ways to allow more light to enter your home. Ideally, spring windows are lightly dressed in filmy layers–or bare–to let in as much of the cheering light as possible. But if itís still too cold to put away the heavy drapes, consider using mirrors or small, pretty lamps to add illumination.
7. Freshen Your Things: Periodically fluffing small cushions and throw rugs in the drier is a good idea: it helps to get rid of dust mites and just plain dust. And when you have a sunny day, you can place items outdoors to soak up sun and fresh air. You will smell the difference when you bring them back inside!
8. Bring Blossoms In: I recently had lunch at a friendís house where a vase of vivid yellow forsythia was blooming on her table, although outside the windows the hillside was still covered with snow. Her husband had simply pruned the bush and placed the still-dormant branches in water–and they burst into flower all by themselves. It was such a sunny, cheering sight! You can try encouraging dormant flowering tree or bush branches to bloom for a lovely taste of instant spring. Or invest in a few bulbs to place in a pot with some stones or soil. Keep them moist and watch them flower, then plant them outdoors once the weather has truly warmed. Many bulbs will bloom again the following year.
9. Think Colorfully: Winter colors tend to be dark, heavy, and more saturated, while spring colors have a refreshing lightness and invigorating freshness. There are many inexpensive ways to bring airy pastel colors into your home: it just takes a little imagination. A robinís egg-colored plate, a buttercup yellow toss-pillow, or a vibrant yellow-green scatter rug can all brighten up your space and give it some spring-like energy. If you donít want to break the bank buying new spring-colored accessories, search your local thrift store for bargains: they are often filled with great and inexpensive treasures.
10. Use Spring Imagery: Most of us associate birds, nests, and eggs with spring, and it is great fun to fill our homes with reminders of these lively icons: you can find some great realistic-looking, inexpensive bird nests at craft stores to fill with egg-shaped candies, soaps, or stones. Pictures of birds, and other bird-related accessories–like imaginatively-painted birdhouses, for example–are also fun to have around as the season shifts. And if you donít already have a birdfeeder outside your window, consider making or purchasing one in time to host the scores of birds returning to your area. Watching birds at the feeder is a guaranteed heart-lifter. Here are some super-easy ways to make your own bird feeder.
And here are some more spring decorating ideas, just for fun.
By Cait Johnson, author of Earth, Water, Fire, and Air: Essential Ways of Connecting to Spirit (SkyLight Paths, 2003).