Has the spring cleaning bug got you? But you are feeling overwhelmed and don't know where to start? Here are 10 cleaning and clearing tips that are designed to help your home and your head feel clear, fresh, and oh, so springy.
Clean Your Fridge
How many times a day do you look in the refrigerator? A lot, right? Make it a happy place. Throw out the expired condiments, questionable vegetables and bread bags containing only heels. Wipe down the shelves and pull out the drawers and wash them. If this project feels daunting, tackle it one shelf, one drawer at at time. Open a fresh box of baking soda and put it in the back to keep it smelling fresh.
Clear Off The Counter
While you are in the kitchen, give your counters a once over. What appliances have taken up residence but aren't being used? Can you store them in a cabinet or a closet instead? Are your spices fresh? Replace the sponge in your sink and wash the counter under the dish drainer. Tidy up the papers around the phone and answering machine (if you still have those), and clear out the take out menus, receipts and random pieces of mail that have collected.
Get With the Season
Clear out any seasonal decor that is still hanging around the house (is that Santa still on the mantle?). Bring in some fresh flowers or other spring decorations. Fertilize your house plants or bring some in if you don't have any. Leafy plants clean the air which makes them great for bedroom and offices.
Clear Your Calendar
Take a look at your calendar for the next month, or through the summer. What activities make you feels like "Yes!"? Keep those. Review what's left and see what you can cancel, decline, or otherwise get out of. Now sit down with your family and make a "Want To Do" list for the summer together. Mark those things in on your newly spacious calendar.
Give your Closet a Once-Over
Get rid of winter clothes you didn't wear all season and summer clothes that don't fit or you don't feel great in. Mend the items with missing buttons and take anything that needs to be altered to the tailor. Review your bags and shoes and get rid of or repair anything that isn't in functional contidion.
Dump Your To-Do List
After a few months my running to-do list gets a bit long in the, well, length. Sit down with your list and a red pen. Is there stuff on there you are not really going to get around to? Delete it. Stuff you need to do but can’t get going on? Make sure you know the real next action is or just eat that frog and get it done.
Clean Out the Medicine Cabinet
Get rid of expired medications, completed prescriptions, and outdated makeup. Toss or give away lotions, unopened bars of soap, or hair products that you aren't going to use. Replace your toothbrush and clean your hairbrush. Repair or get rid of broken or mismatched jewelry.
Make a List of House Projects
Homeowners quickly learn that the joy of owning a house is the never-ending list of repairs and improvements. But do you know the next five things you want to tackle? They might be big like getting the roof replaced, or small like weeding the side yard. Review the list with your spouse, write it down and post it where you will see it regularly. Be sure to cross them off as you tackle them!
Clean off Your Desk
Or wherever your important (and not so important) papers gather. File what you need to keep, recycle or shred what you can get rid of. Now that tax season is over, review your financial papers and get rid of what you don't need to retain. Recycle the magazines and newspapers that may be accumulating and give the nice clear surface a wipe down. If dealing with papers is a weak area for you, check out this great workshop by Aby Garvey of Simplify 101.
Make a Vision Board or Inspiration Wall
Collect images, words, or symbols that represent the qualities you want in your life, your goals, or things that make you happy. (Hint: pull some pages out of those magazines you had collected before you recycle them!) Hang it somewhere you will see it often. Visualizing the life you want to live is a powerful way to create change and bring what you want into your life.
If you can do all, or even just a few of these things, you will have created space in your home, your head, and your heart for new, good stuff to flow in.