It seems like only yesterday we were asking all of our clocks and watches to fall back and here we are on the edges of spring already, with our clocks ready to be shifted back to daylight savings time. Though our initial reaction may be to just complain about how inconvenient the time change is, how tired we are, or how stupid it is to have daylight savings time “in this day and age,” the fact of the matter is that twice a year, time change is going to happen. It’s one of the realities of life. So, how can you spring forward with less disruption and more ease?
Yes, I know that feeling happy can often depend on ending the argument with reality. Yet, while I get this intellectually, my body doesn’t always agree. Our bodies crave rhythm, and despite our dependency on blinking digital numbers, we subconsciously respond to angles of light, patterns of sleep, and rhythms of nature. It’s no wonder that we’re cranky when we’re forced to change. Sometimes, I think the adjustment to the “spring forward” feels more challenging than when you travel to Europe.
Here are a few ideas to help ease you into the transition.
One – Early to Bed
What if you listened to your body and just went to bed? Take advantage of your body’s natural rhythms to get some extra shut-eye. Listening to your body when it needs rest is about listening to your inner wisdom. One of the biggest challenges to the refusal to listen to our bodies when we are tired leads to poor choices: late night snacking or a binge on Netflix and we end up staying up way too late.
Two – And Early to Rise
I know, darling, that you are likely feeling super tired. Set your alarm to go off an hour early, then get up and ease into your day. Sit down to a real breakfast, create a new morning ritual, or spend that time working on that novel you’ve been telling yourself you were going to write! You might still feel a little tired, but getting an early start can get you back on track and feeling ahead again.
Three – Put on Your Kid Gloves
Be kind to yourself. Treat yourself like you would a friend who wasn’t feeling scattered. Often, darling, we forget that change can cause us to get lost in fears. Just set your intent for kindness. Realize, too, that you’re not alone, that you will adjust to the change, and that you’ll find your momentum again. Remember that kindness is always in style.
Four – Consider a Weekly Review
It’s easy to fall out of routines, so when we have a shake-up like the time change, it’s a good time to create nurturing practices. A weekly review allows you to really sharpen your intuitive focus so that the things that really matter to you don’t fall away in the busy-ness. It lets you to see where you’ve been and where you’re heading. Beginning a new practice that propels you forward after we spring forward is always helpful.
Five – Create White Space
The more “to dos” you try to squeeze into your day the less you actually get done. Just for the week, reduce your “to do” list to the bare minimum. Look at the big picture of your week ahead and cross off one item a day for the next week. Give yourself plenty of white space so that you can breathe.
Six – Begin a Meditation Practice
One of the most proactive things you can do is to go within. Especially when you’re feeling scattered or like you don’t have a second to spare. Creating a meditation or prayer practice is the perfect way to listen to – or rediscover – your inner voice.
Seven – Creating Something Helps You Mentally Spring Forward
What have you been meaning to create? There’s no better way to ease transition than getting lost in creativity. Write a letter. Make a fantastic dinner. Write a poem. Write a blog. Paint a postcard and send it to someone. In other words, get out of your head and into your hands. This is a great time to start a journaling practice, especially if you take advantage of getting up earlier to ease into your day.
Eight – Put Your Phone Down Already
It can be so easy to while away the exhaustion that the time change brings by just scrolling through your phone. Rather than perpetuate your exhaustion, just put your phone down already. Instead, pick up a book. Or simply watch the flicker of a candle.
Nine – Go Play
Do you take life way too seriously? Then use these days after we spring forward to loosen up a little. The light is lasting longer, so go outside and play. Ride your bike. Toss a ball. Go for a walk. Release your inner child. Playing is essential to productivity. Really!
Ten – Don’t Drive Through
When you’re tired and cranky, it’s tempting to get drive-through for dinner. Do yourself a big favor and don’t go for greasy comfort food. Eat really light at dinner time – scrambled eggs and toast or soup or cold sandwiches. Then you can go to bed early and wake up excited for a new day. What if you also used the days after we spring forward to begin meal planning?
Eleven – Tidy Up
There’s nothing like deep cleaning and clearing clutter to help ease a transition. Clean all the flat spaces in your living room. Clean your closet. If you need some inspiration to stay on top of clutter, snag my monthly tips on clearing clutter for mind, body, and soul.
Twelve – Buy Yourself Some Flowers
Though we’re springing forward, it’s hard to feel like spring when there’s snow on the ground or the grass is brown. Pick up some flowers at the grocery store to brighten up the place when you spring forward. Never underestimate the power of tiny luxuries in everyday life.
The best piece of advice on how to spring forward with more ease is to stop complaining about it. Even if it is happening in your own mind.
I know that losing an hour of sleep can wreak havoc on your body for a bit, but cultivating some new rituals and creating special routines in the days ahead can help you ease into transition and fall in love with your life even more! You now have more than enough time, lots of peace, and full permission from me to go to bed before 9:00 tonight!
Happiness depends on your attitude. And when you make the decision that you are going to spring forward with more ease, then you’ll be more successful in actually feeling feeling happier.