For some people, spring cleaning is their favorite part of the season. But the phrase doesn’t always spark joy in the hearts of everyone who hears it (or, if I’m being honest, it doesn’t spark joy in the hearts of most of the people who hear it). We think of cleaning as a chore, something that holds us back from doing the fun tasks we’d much rather fill our days with. But cleaning doesn’t always have to feel like a tiring obligation. In fact, organizing and cleaning your space can feel enjoyable, and leave you even more energized and ready to tackle your busy schedule. But if you’re the kind of person who would rather fall face first into the couch than straighten up your coffee table, let me light the fire of urgency: we’re down to the wire to squeeze in some last minute spring cleaning. And as someone who’s always been a bit of a clean freak, I’m here to give you some of my best tips for getting your sh*t together, both mentally and physically, before it’s too late.
- Make a to-do list or schedule to plan things out
If you know me at all, I can guarantee that you’ve heard me mention lists and schedules before. But they truly are the key to productivity! Not only do they hold you accountable for your actions, but they also allow you to delegate your time where needed, so that you don’t pack too much into your schedule. Overbooking your day will just make you stretch yourself too thin, become easily overwhelmed, and will eventually lead to burnout and even less productivity than you originally started with.
Although this isn’t necessarily a cleaning tip per se, you won’t be able to organize your room or your space if you don’t have everything else together. A messy schedule and a scattered mental checklist will only leave you feeling stressed. Budget your time wisely, and you’ll be far less likely to procrastinate.
- Get rid of things!
Let’s be honest, we’re all guilty of having too much stuff. We accumulate a lot of items that we don’t necessarily need, and rather than deal with the clutter, we pack it away somewhere and forget it exists — or at least try to forget.
But there are plenty of people out there who might need the items that you don’t want. Rather than leave this stuff sitting idle, you should sort through all the junk and determine what items you want to keep because you’re genuinely using them, and what objects have the thickest layer of dust on them. Anything that’s not in use, you should donate or sell to someone else. Why leave it sitting around when it has no purpose for you?
Start by creating two piles — one of things to keep and one of things to toss. When you’re going through your stuff, put it into one pile or the other. There is no in-between. Trust me, at first it might be difficult deciding what decade-old items you’re going to part with; but you’ll feel so much better in the end.
- Utilize your storage and put away things that are out of season
I know that I just told you to get rid of a bunch of your things, but I promise there’s a method to my madness. I like to organize my storage seasonally, so that I free up space in my closet for only the clothing items that are necessary. By putting away the clothes I can’t wear until another weather change comes around, I free up so much space in my room. Goodbye until next winter, alpaca sweater that heats my body better than a radiator. Besides, there’s always a benefit to freeing up more space in your closet… Shopping spree, anyone?
- Develop a system to make things easier to find
The key to organizing is to have a system that works for you. Whatever makes the most sense to you is something you should implement. Try color-coding your closet so it’s easier to find the clothes you’re thinking of and section them off between work, casual, and out on-the-town options, or label the drawers in your kitchen so you’re not endlessly rummaging for that one favorite spoon of yours. You’ll cut down on a lot of wasted time and effort in the long run. As long as it makes sense to you, that’s all that matters. And who doesn’t love a good excuse to shop for cute organizers?
- Make sure you have the right supplies
It’s all about having the right stuff, no matter what area of life you’re dealing with. No one has fun cleaning with a beat-up broom that deserved to be tossed in 1997 (I’m looking at you, Mom). This season, try upgrading your cleaning closet for a change — instead of your actual closet. Vacuuming is a lot more fun with a cordless unit, and as a bonus you can fit in more dance parties along with your cleaning sessions. Besides, there’s absolutely no good reason to do your dishes with a normal, boring sponge when you could have a Scrub Mommy in hand.
- Have fun with it!
Finally, cleaning won’t feel like such a chore if you’re having a good time. Check out a good cleaning playlist on Spotify or create your own out of your favorite hype tunes, and you’ll be jamming and having your own personal karaoke session in no time. Treat it just like a workout — no pain, no gain, baby.
Of course, you wouldn’t feel so down to the wire if you were better about cleaning up year round. The more you develop a regular cleaning routine, the less work you’ll have to do at one time. Try spreading it out for a change, rather than spreading yourself too thin – next year, you won’t have to cram down into the final two days!