The 10 Questions to Ask Yourself During Spring Cleaning

Spring is officially here! And that does not only mean flowers will be blooming, snow will stop falling, and school will be over, but also that we are officially ready for Spring Cleaning 2019. Spring cleaning is never fun, and often can be overwhelming when we look at how cluttered our homes have gotten throughout the year. But we are here to help, I have compiled a list of ten questions to ask yourself before you start throwing away or donating anything. Here are the ten questions to ask yourself during spring cleaning:

01. WHAT AREA ADDS THE MOST STRESS?

Image result for stress gifGIF courtesy of Giphy.

It’s usually the beginning of cleaning that overwhelms us the most. But if we stop stressing about all of the places we need to clean, and instead focus on one area, then the mission of spring cleaning will seem less taxing. Before you pick a spot in your house to start, ask yourself this question: what area adds the most stress? What area would be beneficial to your life if you began to organize it? It is impossible to declutter your whole house in one day but start thinking of this as a long-term project and prioritize the areas that are most prevalent in your life.

02. HOW CAN I MAKE THIS AREA MORE SUITABLE FOR MY NEEDS?

Image result for decluttering gifGIF courtesy of Life Imagined Differently.

Every space in your house should have a purpose. Here is the area where you get your homework done. Here is the area where I let my dishes dry. Every location should be helping you achieve what you need to get done, not add stress to your life. Once you pick the area in which you want to start decluttering, ask yourself how you can make this area more beneficial for you. Keep in mind why you use that space and imagine the best and most effective way you can organize it. This area is your personal space, and you need to take advantage of that!

03. WHAT DO I NEVER WEAR/USE?

Image result for declutter gifGIF courtesy of Pinterest.

We are all guilty of buying something and then never using it or wearing it. We always think at the moment, “oh I really this,” when in reality, it is most likely to sit in the back of your closet or a drawer for months. Items that you don’t use are pointless to own, and they are only taking up space in your home. Let yourself part with the things that have not been used, don’t hold on to them thinking that one day they will because we both know that in a few days they will be back where you last hid them.

04. HAVE I USED THIS ITEM IN THE PAST YEAR?

Image result for declutter gifGIF courtesy of BuzzFeed.

Letting go of items is challenging. There is no denying that. But if you have not taken time to use this item in the past year, there is a high chance that you will continue not using the object. Why should you then allow the item to take up space in your life? It may be adding more stress than it is worth, and even if it is not, it still is not holding value in your life. If you are willing to declutter your home for spring cleaning, you need to become aware that you will learn to let things go and realize you need to set standards for the things you allow into your life.

05. IS THIS ITEM SIMILAR TO A DIFFERENT ITEM I USE MORE?

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GIF courtesy of Presence.

I used to own four plain black t-shirts, and out of those four, I would only wear two. So why have I kept the same four shirts in my drawer that is already impossible to close? If you are questioning whether or not to let an item go, ask yourself if you have an item that is similar to another item in your house. If you find yourself knowing that you use the other item more frequently, then it is time to let go of the item in question. Trust me; you do not need to own four plain black t-shirts.

06. DOES THIS ITEM HAVE A HOME?

Image result for declutter gifGIF courtesy of Star 104.5 FM.

Every item in your home should have a place to showcase it or store it. If you are working in a stressful area, ask yourself why does this cause stress in your life. Narrow it down to a reason, and if the reason is that there are too many items then find a home for each piece. I used to have at least twenty different items on the top of my dresser, and most of the time I felt like I was trying to convince myself that I needed all of those items right there. But, in reality, I did not need to have twenty things on my dresser, it clogged space, and it was not the item’s purposeful home. I needed to recognize that all items need to have an area where they belong and where they would be most useful.

07. ARE YOU UNSURE OF THE IMPORTANCE OF THIS ITEM?

Image result for declutter gifGIF courtesy of BuzzFeed.

Sometimes we cannot make a decision right there and then if an item has real importance. I recommend that if you seriously cannot decide whether or not an item is important and worth keeping, then put it in a box. Label this box as the “Maybe” pile and store it in a place that will not be in your way and come back to it in six months. If you forgot about this item, then you have answered your question. You have realized that the thing is not essential and that it is time to donate it. But if you missed the item, then take it out of the box and find a home for it. That is a perfect way to figure out an item’s value.

08. WILL I REGRET LETTING THIS GO?

Image result for declutter gifGIF courtesy of Giphy.

We all have items that have sentimental feelings attached to it. Whether the item was given to you as a present from your ex or hold fun memories from the summer you are not ready to let go, think to yourself would you regret making this go or would it take some stress off. We often do not notice this, but usually, when we work on decluttering our houses, we are also decluttering our lives, and we are working out past issues that we have been ignoring. By focusing on our attention on items that have sentimental feelings attached to its value, we are also making a statement that we are ready to work past why the item has sentimental value.

09. DO I FEEL OBLIGATED TO KEEP THIS?

Related imageGIF courtesy of Giphy.

Sometimes the sentimental value we place on items is because we feel obligated to. I know for me, I have boxes of my ex’s things tucked away in my attic. But these items I do not need or have a purpose for them because they have been stored in my attic for years to months. So, then what is stopping me from throwing them away? The commitment I once had with them makes me feel guilty if I was to throw away items that highlight our relationship. But I know that it is time to move on from these items and it is time to stop feeling guilty if I am ready to. 

10. DOES THIS ITEM “SPARK JOY”?

Image result for declutter gifGIF courtesy of Pinterest.

Taking a tip from Marie Kondo from her Netflix original show, “Tidying Up with Marie Kondo,” items should spark joy. If they spark joy and are fulfilling their purpose by being in your home, then they are doing precisely what they are supposed to. There is no reason to let go of those items. But often some things are meaningless, invaluable, or taking up space, that does not spark joy for us because of that. Those are the items to let go of during your spring cleaning filled with decluttering.