As the season and weather around us changes it brings an opportunity to start over, make changes, and approach new things. Days get longer, the weather’s warmer, and everything encompassed in the world around us feels fresh and new.

The transition from winter to spring in particular has my heart beaming this year.  It’s led me to address some very unfamiliar places that without my knowledge allowed me to grow and mature in ways that I hadn’t even planned for.  It’s very fair to say that this spring has been quite a learning season for me.  In typical Lauren fashion, I felt like sharing, so below are the four lessons I learned this spring that helped me approach this season with a huge smile and a ‘take on the world’ attitude.

Reflecting on Situations Makes You A Better Person

I was at New York Penn Station on Good Friday when I experienced the event that drives this lesson.  Before I get into it, from this I learned that reflecting on the situations in life that terrify us (or any situation) will make you a better person.

Imagine we go through life experiencing both good and bad times, good and bad emotions, but never actually take the time to reflect and understand the impact they have on our life.  It can be scary or hard to dwell on our emotions, but it’s an important practice to help us learn and grow– and ultimately become better humans.

When I was shoved out of Penn Station by thousands of people, in fear of a gunman or derailed train, I was terrified. I was overcome with emotions of fear and helplessness that I had never felt before. As soon as I felt safe and had recollected my things, I called my dad.  Even from thousands of miles away he helped me realize that rather than toting my now scuffed up luggage and anxiety-ridden self home to catch a train in the morning, I needed to face my fear and get on a train that evening. And as uncomfortable as it was, I did. I took the time leading up to my train to New Jersey and the two hour train ride there to reflect on the events from earlier.  Having taken the time to reflect and mull through those emotions, I’m able to acknowledge that I’m capable of facing my fears and ultimately a better person for having experienced the chaos in Penn Station that day.  

Happiness Is a Result of How We Respond

In the presence of negativity, we have two choices. One, respond and two, respond. But there is huge significance in HOW exactly we respond.  If you feel that you’re often surrounded by negativity check first if you are projecting any type of negativity yourself. Are your words kind, positive and encouraging? Or do you complain, pass judgement and get frustrated? It’s easy to let our negative emotions show.  Where the challenge lies is navigating the negative emotions in our own lives and placed on us by those around us and responding in a positive way. Most importantly, not letting them affect us.

At different times this winter I felt a lot of negativity in my work life.  I had anxiety and felt discouraged at times, but took it upon myself to improve the situation rather than letting it affect my overall happiness.  And I did.  Spring brought on an awesome opportunity for positive change in the form of a new job.  The change was a direct correlation of my response (and action) towards the negativity in my life.  Cheers to that!

Delayed doesn’t mean denied

It seems like every season I have something to say about patience. This one is no different. I heard a message last week that really resonated with me surrounding patience and getting what we want in life.

Summed up, the message was this:  Just because we ask for something doesn’t mean we’ll receive it right away, or even that we’ll receive exactly what we ask for. But at the same time, just because what we ask for in life is delayed to our expectation doesn’t mean that we are denied of it. It’s patience that allows us to receive what we ask for, and often times more than we ask for, when the timing is right.

Self Care is the Best Care

Taking care of yourself is key as we are introduced to new seasons.  Take care of your emotional, spiritual and physical well being this spring.

For me, self care has been clearing my life of clutter in the form of thoughts and also physical clutter. I like taking time at the end of the day to decompress and use my mornings to breathe in and meditate on a new day. Yoga and friendship have helped me balance my emotions and my thoughts.  I also took on a bit of a ‘treat myself’ mentality that I should probably put on halt soon, but hey, knowing when to spoil yourself is important!  I approach self care with an attitude of becoming more self aware and getting to know and love myself. It’s a great thing!

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