7 July 2012

Life Laundry Spring Cleaning Plan
A de-clutter with a difference

A little bit of laundering of every aspect of your life can make a big difference to how you look and feel.  It's all about adopting a holistic outlook and sweeping away anything - or anyone! - that's bringing you down, form an unhealthy diet to too many possessions, toxic friendships and thoughts, or debts that have been hanging around for too long.  It's time to tumble into the life laundry ...

Launder your diet 
  • Feeling sluggish and lethargic? An inner cleansing detox could be all that's needed to pep you up.  
  • It may also reduce niggling health problems such as bloating (and I still don't know what this is!), low immunity, headaches, poor concentration and itchy skin - all signs that your body's natural defence systems are going into overload.  Hardly surprising when we're exposed to thousands of man-made chemicals every day; in the food we eat, the air we breathe and the products we use. 
Kickstart your system 
  • Cut out caffeine-containing drinks such as tea, coffee and fizzy drinks (and chocolate?).  Aim instead to drink at least two litres of still water a day.
  • Replace refined carbohydrates and fatty, sugary foods with fresh, organic fruit and vegetables (fruit and veg juices are good too).
  • Add cooked pulses, brown rice, and a little white fish and chicken, as well as steamed vegetables.
Launder your Space
  • According to Chinese medicine there's nothing more debilitating than being surrounded by possessions that bear little relevance to your life today. Clutter is like a vampire that sucks good energy out of you.  So if you have things that you no longer, love, especially if they are more than three years old, it's a good idea to get rid of them.  You'll be amazed by how much energy it releases.
  • A good system is to go through your belongings, applying the four-rule coding - sell it, give it, bin it or keep it.
  • Pick a small space - a drawer or a section of your wardrobe - set a timer (an hour?) and go through it.  Be ruthless, if you don't like it, you've never worn it or it's two sizes too small, dispose of it using the four-rule coding above.
  • Carry on, space by space, room by room, until the house is clear.  (Also see: http://paintedgold.com/Organize/declutter.html)

Launder your Finances
Spring is a brilliant time to clean up your money management too.  Personal finance doesn't have to be about debt, and the efficient co-ordination of funds can save hundreds of pounds in the long term.

  • Face up to debt: make a list of what you owe, starting with essentials such as mortgage, council tax and utilities, followed by debts which you may be able to delay for a while.  Then make a realistic repayment plan.
  • If you have credit card debts move them to a 0% card if you can pay them by the time the 0% deal ends, or a low life-time interest card if you can't
  • If you have investments think about changing to ethical ones.  To find an ethical financial adviser look at www.ethicalinvestment.org.uk.  
  • Check you're not paying too much tax.  
  • Thrift is good - look at www.moneysavingexpert.com or www.fool.co.uk for a host of money-saving ideas.
  • Lastly, if you can't afford it, don't buy it!
Launder your Thoughts
If you think the worst will happen it may well do.  You are the master of your own mind and it's up to you whether you see your glass as half empty or half full.  Examining the way you think - and getting rid of negativity - can change your life.  Negative beliefs and thought patterns really do hold you back - remember they are only beliefs and these can be changed.
  • Establish a morning ritual to start your day on a positive note.  As soon as you wake up have a good stretch to kick start your body and your mind into action.
  • Get out of bed, draw back the curtains or pull up the blinds and have a good yawn to get some oxygen into your system.
  • Spend a few moments clearing your head and thinking about the day ahead and how what you are going to do may help you reach your long-term goals.  It may help to write these down or keep a journal.
  • Adopt one or more positive affirmations that you say each morning - examples include 'I will succeed' or 'With every step I'm nearer to my goals'.
  • An aromatheraphy shower in the mornings will help revitalise you for the coming day.
  • Every day try to do something that scares you just a little - getting out of your comfort zone will help you develop confidence in your ability to succeed.
Launder your Beauty Routine
  • Healthy skin needs a simple cleanse, exfoliate, tone and moisturise routine. (grapes)
  • Twice a week use a gentle exfoliant to smooth any rough patches and get rid of dead cells.  (sugar/olive oil; witch hazel or rosewater)
  • Apply a moisturiser after patting skin almost dry with a soft towel.  
  • Use a sunscreen to protect against dryness and damaging vu rays.

Walk Tall: Lift your chin away from your chest, pull your shoulders back and down and look the way you're going. With each step push off strongly from your heel and breathe deeply, don't force it and don't hold your breath.  Simple breathing deeply and looking forward can do wonders for your feelings of optimism and self-esteem.

From Wellbeing Magazine

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