‘Spring Fever’ is Real – Here are 5 Ways to Tap Into the Motivational Energy

by | Read time: 7 minutes

Spring fever may be shrouded in myth but it’s as factual—and relevant—as its antithesis, seasonal affective disorder. If you feel a natural rise in your mood the moment the winter weather warms, trust that it’s not all in your head—or, rather, it’s mostly in your head, but in a completely different way than the cliché suggests: The longer days, shorter nights, clearer skies and balmier temps impact everything from melatonin production to energy levels, giving many a whole season of more pep in their step and pure, unfettered happiness.

Woman Enjoying Spring Fever Blowing Handful of Petals Standing in Street with Cherry Blossom Trees

While we’re all for using this uplifted emotional state to engage in delightful activities, like whiling away a Sunday on a blissful beach, walking barefoot on the grass, and dining al fresco with your friends and family, you can also leverage this organic boost in your mood to reset and elevate your life. Keep reading to get inspired with these five natural methods for renewing your life this spring.

5 ‘Spring Fever’ Strategies to Refresh & Renew

1. Dust off your New Year’s resolutions

The impetus to set resolutions at the start of a new year is less about our physical and mental state than the deeply entrenched Western tradition. Other cultures celebrate a fresh beginning in the spring, which has historically been known as a time of hope and renewal. Besides, the winter blues are real: According to a survey commissioned by Noom, 37% of respondents, or about a third of the people interviewed, claimed they were substantially less motivated to exercise during the winter months—and that’s just physical activity we’re talking about, not the more ambitious New Year’s resolutions typically made like finessing one’s finances or learning a new skill.

Forget about the setbacks you’ve had from January to March, and use this Spring to revisit the commitments you internally pledged to make. If toning up was on your list, exploit the sunnier weather by taking your dates and family excursions outside, whether it’s a Saturday hike with your kids in tow, or trying something new with your S.O., like kite surfing or golfing.

If you resolved to eat out less and more at home, give yourself an even stronger incentive by planting an herb garden in your yard, on your patio, or in your kitchen windowsill—the very scent of fresh rosemary might compel you to cook a healthy, delicious meal.

2. Find—and sustain—a flow state

If you’re feeling as galvanized as the spring flowers that are blooming and the bees that are buzzing, maximize it by honing your capacity to enter, and remain in, a flow state.

What is a flow state, you might ask?

It’s the natural phenomenon of becoming so profoundly immersed in the task at hand that distractions, internal and external, dissolve, the constructs of time disappear and productivity ascends to new heights. First coined by psychologist Mihaly Csikszentmihalyi, and also known as “in the zone,” a flow state is the optimal place to be to perform at your peak.To this end, consider practicing a few of the following, no matter if you’re conducting a task you could do with your eyes closed or trying something brand new:

Challenge yourself – Psychologists suggest that entering the flow state happens with ease when we have just enough challenge to keep our minds curious and inspired. If you’re in your daily yoga class, aim to refine your posture or attempt an inversion you haven’t tried before. If you’re at work, whatever and wherever that might be, resist the urge to work on autopilot and actively seek out ways to perfect your performance.

Eliminate distractions – Put your phone on airplane mode. Activate “Focus” on your laptop so that only the document you’re working on can be seen. Go running in a place that’s devoid of people so that you won’t have to stop to say hello to an acquaintance. Isolate yourself in a part of your house and with the door locked, or at a desk in a quiet library. The less competition your mind has, the more deeply it can concentrate on what’s directly in front of you; research, after all, shows that it takes an average of 25 minutes to return your full attention to a task after a disruption.

Tackle self-care first – True: When you’re completely submerged in a flow state, you may forget to eat, hydrate and even rest. And yet, getting into the groove will be thwarted if your stomach is growling, you’re thirsty, or your eyes are dry. Before settling into the job—whether it’s gardening, writing, painting or your taxes—eat a nutritious meal or snack, drink a few glasses of water and close your eyes; with these basic physical necessities handled, you will be more able to achieve your goals. Csikszentmihalyi said, “The best moments in our lives are not the passive, receptive, relaxing times; the best moments usually occur if a person’s body or mind is stretched to its limits in a voluntary effort to accomplish something difficult and worthwhile.”

3. Spring clean—yes, really

The increase in energy you may experience when spring surfaces can feel overwhelming for some at first, provoking distractedness, restlessness, and even a touch of anxiety.

Capitalize on this by putting your energy toward tidying up your life through and through. A few ideas:

  • Dust and/or vacuum underneath your bed
  • Organize your pantry and donate foods that work against your health goals to your local food bank
  • Detail your car
  • Delete apps on your phone you no longer use (or, ahem, have never used)
  • Use Duplicate Photos Fixer Pro to omit pics from your phone and free up space
  • Toss out expired items, from medications and makeup, to personal care products and linens that are hanging on their last thread
  • Clean out your air ducts

Spring cleaning doesn’t just enhance the appearance of your home and car: it can also protect your health. Research conducted by John Hopkins University demonstrates that accumulated dust and dirt can provoke asthmatic symptoms, while clutter and messiness can prompt tension and irritability.

4. Revive your sexual wellness

In the natural world, spring is practically synonymous with mating, but this isn’t the exclusive provenance of bunnies and rabbits. Our internal biological clocks are affected by the toastier days of Spring, bolstering our libidos and promoting feelings of well-being and love. Whether you’re single, in a long-term partnership, or somewhere in between, use this time wisely by ensuring your sexual health is in tip-top shape. This may entail getting your hormones checked, testing for STIs if you’re in a non-monogamous relationship and sexually active, or addressing concerns—like vaginal dryness or a lack of libido—with your healthcare professional.

Remember: Healthy sexuality is one of the keys to holistic wellness and overall vitality.

5. Nourish a healthy new habit

Science shows that it takes roughly two months to create and retain a new habit—or 66 days, to be precise, which is slightly less than the length of the season.

Utilize the uptick in motivation you feel this spring by developing a fresh practice that stands to benefit you. For some, this may be revitalizing their skincare routine and eliminating potentially toxic ingredients, like parabens and phthalates, from their products. For others, it might mean hitting the pavement for a run in the morning before settling into their home office for a day of remote work. And for others still, it may be getting in the habit of “unplugging” from their electronics for a minimum of two hours per day to reap the rewards of digital detoxing, like stronger self-esteem and heightened creativity.

Need a daily reminder to embrace the habit you want to adopt? Consider using a trigger: Take a habit you already have firmly in place, like brushing your teeth, and use it as the launch site of your new routine: “After I brush my teeth, I’m going to lace up my running shoes and jog a mile before checking my email.”Come summer, and you may be surprised by how splendid you feel, inside and out.

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