Tuesday, March 29, 2016

Spring Fever

Remember this past winter when we ran several articles about the return of spring and the rebirth of the sun? Look around. We made it. The sun has risen and spring is here again. The days will get longer, flowers are blooming, and life is showing it’s greenery. This is the time of renewal, new love, and spring fever.

Spring fever is that time traditionally associated with the beginning of spring when restlessness and excitement for the future kicks in. For some people, life takes on a glittering, popping sensation, almost like static discharge, where everything crackles with barely repressed energy, and there is a feeling that not just anything but actually everything can be done, so get out there and do it. This can be a great time to grab that momentum and push forward, but there are a few things you may want to keep in mind.

First of all, despite bubbly feelings to the contrary, you can’t actually do everything. No one can. You still have limitations, just as you always have, but maybe it’s a good time to take a look at those limitations, test the boundaries, so to speak, and see if they are real. You have limitations, but maybe you don’t have quite as many - or quite the ones, or quite as severe - as you had believed. Maybe you can do more than you thought, and this is a good time to find out, but it is not a good idea to cling to false confidence, any more than clinging to false limitations. If you don’t acknowledge that you have limitations then they are going to come as a shock when they smack you full in the face, and they will. That is inevitable. That shock can cause more harm, as it can set you back and make you fearful of trying again in the future. Test your limits, use your newfound momentum to see how far forward you can go, but do not forget that you do have limitations, so that you can respond reasonably when you meet those limitations. With a reasonable response, you may even find a way around them.

Remember that the wheel keeps turning. In the long run, spring will not stay any more than winter did, so plan accordingly. Enjoy the sun and bask in life renewed, but don’t fool yourself into believing that this is permanent. Life is about balance, and that includes balancing work and play. What you have in surplus today, you may have none of tomorrow, so set aside some of that extra against the hard times. This is also one of those limitations to remember, though this one is universal. Refusing to acknowledge that winter will come again is going to bite hard when winter comes again. Such an attitude can undo all the positive gains you may have made during the spring, if you are not careful. Be careful. Don’t let spring fever make you crazy. Remember that “this too shall pass” does not just refer to the bad things in your life. All life is temporary, so enjoy it while you can, but expect change so that you are not caught off guard when it happens.

For some people, this can be the hardest time of the year. New life, new birth, new possibilities just accentuate old failures and old heartaches. People who have gotten stuck in that particular rut look upon the joys of spring as a reminder of the things they believe they cannot have. According to the CDC, it is during the late spring and early summer that suicide rates are at their highest. Take care of yourself, and take care of your loved ones. Be familiar with the warning signs of suicide, and be observant for those signs. Don’t take anything for granted. If you are someone at risk, talk to those who love you. Explain your concerns and accept the help that they will offer. Don’t be embarrassed. This is your life we’re talking about, and it’s worth the effort. If you know someone at risk, listen. Be the friend they need rather than the friend you think they need. Pay attention and love the ones you love. This is their life we’re talking about, and it’s worth the effort.

Keep these things in mind, but keep one more above all: the sun has returned. Life is renewed. Be renewed along with it, and take joy in the rebirth of the seasons. Get out and walk among the trees. Stop and smell the roses. Let yourself be renewed as well. There are so many things we don’t know about the world around us, but there is one thing I am sure of: Life is meant to be lived. Get out there and live it. Enjoy life, and enjoy yourself. You are life. Life is you. It is all around you and within you, so let the renewal of spring work its magic on you.

Spring fever can make everyone a little bit crazy. That’s fine. It adds some spice to life. Feel that energy crackling through you, and use it to propel yourself forward. Don’t let it blind you to things you need to remember, and you should be fine. Enjoy the spring. Enjoy life.

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