As the weather warms, snow melts, and buds sprout in gardens, it’s the perfect time to open the windows and let the fresh air in. Of course, this can sometimes lead to sweeping out the winter dust that settled in corners. This can lead to cleaning out closets, which can lead to a full spring cleaning.
In fact, this is largely how spring cleaning became a popular seasonal ritual. Back before homes were heated by furnaces, a central hearth with fire, and consequently soot, warmed cold winter days and nights. It also left quite a mess, especially as windows remained shut tight. Spring was therefore the perfect time for deep cleaning and a home refresh.
These days spring cleaning serves several purposes beyond a clean home. Setting aside time for an epic annual clean gives you the opportunity to find items that have gone missing or been misplace, to set expectations for the coming season, and to make room for summer items. The perfect summer serving dish, towels that got pushed to the back of the closet and other home items can appear during a spring clean out.
Benefits of Spring Cleaning
Spring cleaning can increase not only your productivity, but also your overall happiness. When you spend time decluttering and organizing, you often end up saving time in the long run. You don’t waste time trying to find items you need to complete a task and eliminate distractions that encourage procrastination.
According to Steve Scoggin of Wake Forest Baptist Health, “removing dust, dirt and disorder from your environment provides you with a cleaner, more comfortable atmosphere so you can feel happier and more relaxed.”
Even as Covid restrictions have lessened, many of us are still spending a great deal of time at home. Many offices are still not back entirely which means our homes can be filled with allergens. A good spring cleaning can help sanitize and clean out the air in our homes.
Spring cleaning encourages us to really think about what we have and what we need. It can be the perfect time to purge unnecessary items that no longer serve us. This act can fill us with a sense of gratitude and help us stay aware of limiting unnecessary waste. Before immediately replacing with different or more things, make a plan to donate what you don’t need.
But even if you know it’s good for you, you might have some difficulty getting motivated to begin. Here a few tips to to get you going!
Tips to help you get started
Start with Quality Cleaning Products
Start by ensuring you have the right supplies. While it may not be exactly like buying new shoes, starting with new products containing ingredients or scents you love, can go a long way in motivating you to start.
Consider each room and make a list of what you’ll need. You’ll need a variety of cleaning tools like sponges, scrub brushes, and mops or brooms. The best products for spring cleaning include those that are good at disinfecting like wipes, surface cleaners, and special cleaners for toilets and bathrooms.
Air fresheners can also be a nice addition to a spring cleaning regime. They can keep your home smelling fresh and eliminate food, pet, and active kid smells!
Make a Plan to Stay Organized
Once you’ve got all your essential areas spic and span clean, you’ll need solutions to help keep everything organized. It’s easy to get caught in the clutter trap when you don’t have good storage solutions.
Think about which items will need a designated storage spot and how much you’ll need to access those items. If it’s not something you need on a daily basis, you might be able to manage with a large storage bin. These can be stacked and stored away for a season or two.
Open top storage bins are perfect for items you need to access regularly. These are great for stacking on shelves. Other spring cleaning organization products can include storage bags, garment bags, and extra hangers.
Be Mindful of What and How You Purge
Getting rid of old or no longer useful items can be liberating. But before you dump what you don’t want into the trash, consider options to help reduce, reuse, or recycle. If an item is in good condition and can be donated, research organizations that are willing to accept donations and package them accordingly.
Set up a tag sale with the items you no longer need or pass them along to a friend or a charity of your choice. You might make some money!
If your items are not in good condition, look for opportunities to recycle or up-cycle those goods. Old t-shirts can be cut into rags, old toys might be able to be fashioned into something else, and old furniture refreshed.
When all else fails, be sure to find the proper ways to recycle or dispose of your items so you don’t contribute unnecessary items to landfills.
Don’t Forget about Office Spring Cleaning
Whether you’re just starting to return back to the office or you’ve been working at a home office, your workspace could probably use a good cleaning. Stock up on additional cleaning supplies including tissues, wipes, and disinfecting sprays for the office.
Spring cleaning is a wonderful way to reset and refresh after a long winter indoors. Cleaning can help you remain healthy both physically and mentally so you are productive and happy.
Written by: Kathleen Siddell