It’s hard to believe that spring started just a couple days ago. That means it’s time for some spring cleaning.
I think taking time at the end of every quarter to deep clean is a good thing. When I say deep clean, I don’t just mean your room or your apartment. I mean EVERYTHING. Deep clean your mind, your email, your relationships, your schedule, and anything else that could possibly be reevaluated. It’s hard to get anything done when you’re surrounded with clutter. Every equinox is a good time to check in with yourself and set aside time for decluttering. Set aside one weekend to thoroughly clean your slate!
Even if you’re someone who is good at putting away your clothes after you wear them, doing your dishes right after you use them, and vacuuming every now and again, your living space can still get messy. Put on some good tunes and make yourself a pot of tea. Buckle in for several hours of digging in the weeds.
Start in one room. Go through all of your items and decide what you are keeping, tossing, and giving away. Immediately throw away your toss items and place your give away items in a bag by your front door. Be liberal on how much you toss and give away. I highly recommend the book The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up by Marie Kondo. In this book, Kondo poses the simple question "does it bring you joy" to determine what you are going to keep or toss. If you’re not in love with it, why have it? It’s time to let it go.
After you have gone through this process, it’s time to get out the cleaning supplies. Sanitize all surfaces, especially the ones your consistently touch. Vacuum and swiffer the floor. Wash things that get grimy (the sink, the refrigerator, makeup brushes, etc.) After you have done this process, decide if you want to rearrange your space! Sometimes, rearranging your space is all you need to feel totally refreshed and ready to pursue your best life again.
YOUR EMAIL (AND OTHER INBOXES)
Take breaks by putting on your fave Netflix series and opening your inbox. Lately, I’ve tried to either delete emails as I no longer need them, or sort them into inbox folders. Still, emails get away from me and I can wind up with several (hundreds even) ‘unread.’ Scroll through one by one and either sort the email into a folder or delete it. Unsubscribe to newsletters and brand emails that you don’t read or have no use for anymore. This way, you’ll get less of them to declutter the next round.
If you have other inboxes that back up with messages (texts, Instagram, Facebook), go through those too. You’ll feel so much better when you see that there are NO little red icons on your iphone app showing unread messages!
Sit down and think about what you want. What you REALLY want and what makes you happy day to day. Maybe you don’t know - and that’s okay! But, you can still write down some goals. Maybe you’ve realized you spend too much time in front of a screen and want to spend more time journaling. Maybe your house was so messy, it took you five days to deep clean it, so you want to prioritize daily cleaning more. Maybe you’re unhappy at your job and want to try somewhere new. Maybe you’ve always wanted to try yoga, but haven’t actually gotten around to attending a class. Write down a list of these things you want to try or do differently. This is your priority list for the quarter.
Take the priority list you just made and compare it to your schedule. Where can you fit in time to meet these goals? Are you doing anything now that you just don’t feel like doing anymore? So, you no longer like your cycle class on Wednesday evening, but you could fit in the yoga class there instead. You could take 10 minutes after you get home from work to clean one thing. You could limit yourself to only one episode of a Netflix show per weeknight, and then you’ll write for half an hour. Whatever it is, ‘find’ the time to make your goals happen and schedule it.
Evaluate your relationships. Are you spending as much time as you would like with your close friends and family? Schedule it. Are there certain people in your life or on your social media that are toxic to you? Ain’t nobody got time for that! Reach out to your friends you haven’t seen in too long and ask to meet up. Unfriend the people who make you scream at your Facebook feed. Make a family dinner night. This is a perfect time to re-engage with those you love and disengage with those who make you miserable.
Ideally, you will keep up your decluttering throughout the quarter until the next equinox overhaul. It’s not too bad to spring clean if you keep up your daily mindfulness. What is your favorite spring cleaning suggestion? Tell me your process for decluttering!