Today, I organized my problems into four categories: Clothes, Mail, Dishes and Shoes. These are the four things that end up forming weird piles in my living room. Yet while they cause me distress – in all honesty – they’re very easy to take care of, with a little bit of motivation and a lot less couch time. (Keep in mind, I do pay my bills. I’m talking about coupons from the circular that I swear I’ll use someday, and don’t. And forget to throw out. For a year.)
In this wonderful world, there are neat people (think: Danny Tanner) and messy people (think: Jesse Pinkman when he’s really depressed). If the thought of spring cleaning makes you want to jump out of your streaky window, here are a few ways you can psych yourself up for the challenge – and maybe actually take care of your mission before spring arrives.
1. Tackle Your Closet, And Make It Fun
Cleaning out your closet is far more enjoyable if you dedicate the project towards helping others. Pile up the clothes you don’t wear anymore and deliver them to one of your favorite charities. If you’re getting rid of dressier clothes and suits, consider Dress For Success, which gives them to women in need who’ll use them for job interviews. How amazing will it feel to know that your clothes helped build another woman’s confidence?
2. Consider Turning Your Walls Into A Project
Are you walls looking a bit dingy? If you own your home, you could either wipe them down with water and a bit of dishwashing detergent, or you could use it as an excuse to start fresh with a new hue. Sure, new paint might be expensive, but just a single weekend could change your whole perspective and add more depth to the space you call home.
3. Organize Your Photos
First, you deserve a high five if you still print out your pictures. Snapfish makes it cheap and easy to hold onto our favorite memories, and I really prefer an album over a camera roll. However, if all of your prints are stuffed in a box, you’ll feel a lot better – and get to relive a lot of great moments – if you got a few good albums to store them in. If albums aren’t your thing, use the spirit of cleaning to get started on that scrapbook you always wanted to assemble.
4. Remember That Procrastination Never Pays Off
Let’s be honest here – you know that when spring hits, you’ll be so excited to go outside that your living space will never get the cleaning it deserves. Take advantage of these last few cold days, and reward yourself with some sunlight and t-shirt-wearing when the chores are done.
In fact, for motivation, consider making a cleaning playlist that includes some of your favorite spring jams. Make sure “California Dreamin’” by the Mamas and the Papas is on there, since it’s a classic.
5. Remember – Renting A Carpet Shampooer Could Be Therapeutic
Keep in mind, I’ve used a carpet shampooer maybe three times in my life. So, once every decade. But each time has been enjoyable, since I felt like a cleaner and healthier person immediately afterward. Chances are, you don’t think too much about the inner workings of your flooring. Trust me. When you see that thing sucking up unknown grime, you’ll feel a lot better about yourself and your surroundings.
6. Replace The Word “Cleaning” With “Redecorating”
Face it. It’s way more fun to redecorate than clean. Think about how much fun it’ll be to give your living space a total makeover. By moving furniture (and getting rid of the dust that accumulated under that couch) you might be able to establish a more comfortable way of living your life. Who knew that moving the TV over to the right side would give you a bit more space when friends come over?
7. Become BFFs With Vinegar
Don’t worry about spending a bunch of money on cleaning supplies – you might already have the best grime fighter in your kitchen. When you learn about how powerful vinegar can be, you’ll actually feel motivated to clean. For example: Equal parts of vinegar and water in a spray bottle will clean windows and mirrors, frozen vinegar ice cubes will clean your garbage disposal, an overnight vinegar soak will clear out your shower head, and doing a dishwasher rinse with vinegar will freshen and clean up the entire appliance. You might become so enamored with vinegar that your place will be clean in no time.
8. Realize That Your Mood Will Improve With Clean Surroundings
If you wake up to find the pizza box from last night still hanging out by the couch, you won’t be sporting a joyful glow. After a good housecleaning, you feel accomplished and ready to take on anything. You might be more willing to invite friends over, or – now that you have the space – get started with that Jillian Michaels DVD. The sooner you take care of business, the sooner that the weight on your shoulders will disappear. A clean home leads to a happy you.
What are some of your best tips for spring cleaning?