Spring officially started this week, and the UK’s leading garden centre, Dobbies is helping remind us of the reasons why springtime officially makes us happier.
Celebrating the arrival of spring with the Spring Equinox, Dobbies is inviting us to plug back into nature and enjoy all the benefits the season of colour can bring.
The leading garden centre has cultivated the ultimate spring happy advice with an abundance of expert tips for your mind, body, home and garden, giving homes a natural healthy boost and sense of zen.
As the traditional time to get outside and make the most of any sunshine, we greet the new season with an internal happy dance. With the promise of parks and gardens in full bloom and lighter, longer days to look forward to, it’s time to shake off those winter blues.
Stacey Sheppard, freelance writer and blogger, author of the award-winning interior design blog, The Design Sheppard, said: ‘Winter is all about warmth and cosy textures. Our homes are filled with chunky knit blankets and cosy cushions. With the arrival of spring, our homes can often feel a bit empty once we’ve packed the tactile textiles away. However, spring is the perfect time of year to focus on bringing more texture into our homes, only this time it’s through greenery.
‘Indoor plants help to add extra character and style to our homes as well as injecting new life into a space. By choosing plants in various heights, sizes and colours you can add a whole new level of texture and visual interest to a room.’
Emily Coxhead, designer, illustrator, author and founder of The Happy Newspaper, ‘a platform to share positive news and wonderful people’
For a happy spring, she suggest:
1. Breathe – Probably the most obvious of tips but I think we sometimes forget to properly breathe, I’m talking about the big deep breaths right from your tummy not just from your shoulders. Put your hands on your tummy and feel it expand as you take a deep breath in…and out. I often use the ‘Headspace’ app to help me focus on breathing, especially at night time when my brain is whirling, and I can’t sleep.
2. Unfollow Negativity – In the same way you don’t need to be friends with people you don’t like or those constantly feeling like a negative weight in your world, you can unfollow anyone on social media who makes you feel unhappy. Turning off notifications on the news apps on your phone for a little while can be a real weight lifted if it’s constantly getting you down.
3. Get Some Fresh Air – This always seems to be easier said than done for me. I work from home so once I get on a roll with work/deadlines, I actually don’t realise the time passing me by and sometimes have to set an alarm or force myself to get out and go for a walk. I have a special little place I go to where there is a waterfall which I always like to think washes my worries away and I always feel so much better when I’ve got some fresh air in my lungs and had a little listen to the birds chirping away. If I’m lucky, I might even get to pet a few dogs along the way!
4. Get Creative – Even if you think you’re the least creative person in the world, getting involved with a craft project or visiting some creative workshops in your local area (or setting up your own little get together) can really have a positive effect on your mental health and can actually be very therapeutic. You never know you might find a hidden talent. Check out the charity Mind’s initiative ‘Crafternoon’ where they’ll send you your own pack …getting crafty, eating cake and raise money for Mind in the process, does it get much better than that?
Dobbies also has a ‘Helping Your Community Grow’ scheme where community groups can apply for fundraising. There are many schemes across the UK that offer people the chance to volunteer to create and maintain community gardens. The new free to attend weekly ‘Grow How’ Clubs are another ideal way to get creative and your fingers green!
5. Make or Bake Something Lovely to Eat – I love cooking and baking, it often gives me a bit of time out from my screen and I think there can be something really magical in handmaking/baking something for yourself and others. From biscuits and cakes to hearty meals and soups (when spring can still be a bit chilly!). It’s not always practical but when you can find, or make, the time try a new recipe or find a recipe online for something tasty you tried recently and of course enjoy eating and sharing it with somebody else.
If you’d like your own quarterly dose of ‘happy’ through your letterbox you can sign up to The Happy Newspaper at www.thehappynewspaper.com.