Tag Archives: spring cleaning

Highlanders Anonymous: Spring cleaning, professionalism, and winter weight gain

“Someone told me that my outfit was inappropriate. Are there any rules against what you wear at RU?”

There actually isn’t a dress code at Radford. Although you might be used to having one and being cautious during high school, those days are thankfully over. It’s up to you whether or not you want to wear pajamas to class or wear a tinfoil hat at this point. The only thing you may want to worry about is personal. How do you want to be perceived in school? As you age at RU, you’ll probably want others to see you as a professional and respected individual. One way to communicate that is through the way you dress. Just keep that in mind.

“My house is an utter disaster and I need to do some spring cleaning. How should I get started?”

Make a shopping list to start. Write down all of the cleaners and tools you are going to need to buy at the store to get everything clean. My recommendations are cleaners that are environmentally friendly, smell good, are diverse enough to clean many surfaces and kill germs. If you go to the store and wing it, read every label carefully.

Dusting kitchen lampOnce you have everything, tidy up and put things away, while making things more organized if you can. I suggest that you consider things that will help you have more organized storage, like plastic bins with lids that can easily be stored in closets or under beds. Furniture is also very helpful to declutter your home. A shoe rack can turn a hazardous and messy looking foyer into a welcoming area.

“I feel like I’ve gained so much weight over the winter. How can I get back into shape?”

I’m no expert, but I have some tips that seem to work for me. First, you need to keep some sort of exercise journal that not only keeps track of when you exercise and what you do, but how you feel while doing it. Being able to see your progress can show you how far you’ve come and keep you motivated.

Another thing you can do is scheduling times you exercise so you make the time for it no matter what. You also have to remember that you’ll need to start back up slowly so that you don’t injure yourself. In addition, you shouldn’t just exercise; you should be eating well too. Even if you still want to eat the same junk food as usual, it’s good to at least try to make your diet more balanced. Add some strawberries to that cereal! My mother always told me that once you are able to do something for a month, it becomes a habit–whether it’s good or bad.

Spring: the underrated cousin of the seasons

Summer and winter are grossly overrated. As much as I love basking in the summer sun and the fun of preparing for Christmas, spring deserves more credit than it gets.

Spring is a magical time of year. Dead grass and trees slowly begin returning to their leafy-green glory and flowers create a brilliant, colorful scene as they peek their heads out of the ground. Many poets have written about the glorious return of life during the spring — but in modern times, spring seems to be the most underrated of the seasons.

Spring is also a wonderful time for self-transformation. As we shed our heavy winter coats and begin to sport sandals and shorts, we can also grasp the opportunity to make changes and grow in our lives. Spring cleaning has become one of my new favorite yearly rituals. I recently felt an enormous amount of stress due to school. I would sit in my room for hours looking at the mess of papers, trash and old clothes I never wear any more. So, I started to clean. I filled a large storage container with things I didn’t need or want anymore, and prepared it to be donated to Goodwill. As I packed those things away and removed them from my room, I felt a weight lift off my shoulders.

Just as leaves fall off trees in the fall and grow back in the spring, I believe people go through similar seasons. We end the year with New Year’s resolutions, start fresh and grow as people. It’s easy to feel lost at the beginning of a calendar year as you set new goals and prepare to make changes, but in the spring, those changes can be seen and felt as they emerge from within ourselves.

Although I literally shed the weight of extra items in my room, many of the changes spring can bring are intangible. Perhaps you started a new skill and were just losing faith in your abilities- spring is a wonderful time to hone those skills and begin to see results. Maybe it’s just because I grew up in Florida and am inspired more by the sun than the cold of winter, but something about the warmth of spring seems to kick us into gear as we make changes.

There’s a reason many DIY and at-home projects are started in the spring- it’s because everything’s fresh. Just as nature is replenished and things grow, we find ourselves wanting to do the same.

Spring is an exciting time of year. No matter how much you love winter, after the holidays it’s easy to yearn for warm weather again. This year, as the tulips begin to bloom, take time to think about the changes you want to make and start taking steps toward reaching those goals.