I’ve got to say, it was a really good idea to start my Spring Clean Challenge back on April 1. I was on the verge of submerging myself in the drama of “OMG, the end of the academic year, I’m stressed and overworked, somebody shoot me now.” The challenge reoriented my energies to completely unrelated things, and I forgot to notice the end of the academic year or care about it. The end of the challenge felt like the academic year, so I’m existing in the relaxed summer state of mind at this point.
Of course, I immediately started a new challenge. This one, however, is long-term and will work until my next birthday. This means I will be ticking off daily challenge points for a year. Just having a challenge of this sort reduces daily stress like magic. It’s not even important what’s on the challenge (although it can be used to promote good health-related or intellectual habits), as long as it exists as an organizing principle of the psyche that holds it together. The absence of such an organizing principle, by the way, is commonly recognized as the cause of the soaring anxiety and depression disorders and stress-related mental health issues.