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5 Ways to Declutter Your Space This Spring

The opinions expressed in this article are the writer’s own and do not reflect the views of Her Campus.
This article is written by a student writer from the Her Campus at Illinois State chapter.

Something about the timing of spring… when life gets busy, cleaning slips away from us. When I consider my free time, I rarely want to spend that extra time cleaning or organizing, but I do find joy in having a clean space. With that in mind, spring is the perfect time to do spring cleaning and set aside time to declutter your space and organize your life. I have cultivated a list of my best suggestions for ways to declutter your space this springtime.

Clear out old photos & videos

If cleaning is not your jam, start with something that doesn’t feel like cleaning. My recommendation is to go through the photos and videos on your phone. It’s always important to back up your photos and videos to your computer or iCloud, so why not take that extra step by deleting old screenshots or shortening those long concert videos you have compiled in your photos? Setting a quick timer for five to ten minutes will get you jumpstarted on the phone decluttering. Then, tackle that email account or any other apps on your phone that needs a bit of TLC.

Set a spring cleaning day in your calendar

If you are someone who needs extra motivation or prefers to have a set day for cleaning, decide on a day in your calendar to do your spring cleaning. This is not always practical for everyone, but if you are motivated by deadlines this is a great way for you to stay on track and hold yourself accountable. I would recommend picking a Friday or Saturday, that way if you need to take breaks or need more time you have the rest of the weekend to accomplish your goal.

Focus on completing smaller tasks throughout the week

To oppose what I just suggested, trying to do everything in one day may not be your jam… and that’s okay! I would recommend taking time to complete smaller tasks every day to slowly chip away at decluttering. This might mean taking out your filled-up trash cans, folding that laundry that’s in a pile on your chair or putting away your makeup that’s all over your vanity space. By doing smaller tasks you may feel better about accomplishing your spring cleaning in a way that’s much less daunting. That way, too, if you find yourself having a more cleaning-oriented day, you can roll with it and accomplish as much as you want. By cleaning or organizing in chunks, you may set yourself up for better success in the long term by keeping things tidy.

Do a closet cleanout

If you are like me and you have way too many clothes and shoes, starting with your closet may be the way to go. I’d recommend making a few piles as you organize your clothes. Make a pile of clothes to keep, a pile to donate or give away to friends/siblings, a pile to sell secondhand or a pile of clothes that are out of season (and would benefit from being stored elsewhere). I have my winter clothes still in my closet and it’s April – I’m due for an organization day very soon, too! Cleaning and decluttering a closet can be challenging to get started, but I find it’s best to get everything out and go from there. You can sort by clothing item, color, season, purpose or whatever would be best for your lifestyle. Just find an organization pattern that works best for you.

Set a timer for 20 minutes

My last suggestion is to set a timer for 20 minutes every day. Once that timer starts begin. Declutter, wipe surfaces, clean your bathroom, vacuum your carpet, and so forth. Take a true twenty minutes non-stop to clean and declutter whatever space needs it. Twenty minutes is not a long time. It’s scrolling on TikTok. It’s watching one episode of Friends. Take the time to better your space and peace of mind.

Life is busy. We may not want to do what feels like “wasting” time by cleaning up or organizing our spaces. The reality is that your mental health will be improved if you are in a clean space and environment. Spring is a great time to give yourself a reset and what feels like a fresh start, especially as the Midwest weather shifts. I challenge you to take the time to do a version of spring cleaning for yourself because you deserve to be in a happy, clean and organized space to live your best life.

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Lynn Merigold

Illinois State '23

Lynn graduated from Illinois State University, where she was a contributing writer, chapter editor/president, and member of the Campus Trendsetters community. When she’s not teaching, you can find her spending time with family/friends, attending a fitness class, or listening to an audiobook!