Inside: Learn five important places to clear this spring for a more minimal home that you can easily maintain.
A guest post by Rose Morrison
Spring is just around the corner now. Have you started thinking about you’d like your home to look and feel this coming season?
Many people have a desire for a clean home in spring – even if they aren’t super excited about the process of getting there.
If you want to have a clean and organized space this spring, simplifying is essential.
Decluttering unnecessary items makes cleaning and organizing quicker and also has a big impact on how your home feels.
Create a place of peace and relaxation for the coming spring by simplifying your space before you tackle your spring cleaning and organizing projects. Read on for five important places to clear this spring for a more minimal home so you can spend more time enjoying the sunshine!
Why Simplify and Clean This Spring?
Spring cleaning is a cultural norm. Historically, it was essential to air the house out and remove dirt and grime that had built up during the cold months. However, now that we have better heating, cleaning products, and air filtration, we can clean at any time.
The first day of spring is the cleaning world’s version of New Year’s eve. It’s an arbitrary date when people hang their hopes of improving their life and themselves.
The good news is you don’t have to wait for a particular day to start making positive changes. You can grab some boxes, garbage bags, and cleaning supplies right now and get started.
Benefits of Clearing the Cobwebs and Clutter
Since you can begin reaping the advantages of “spring” cleaning any time of the year, why not start now? Cleaning your HVAC, dusting the baseboards, and flipping your mattress are all good tasks to do each year.
However, for the full effect, move past traditional checklists and take on some custom projects to simplify your home and make it function better for you and your family. The benefits of clearing the cobwebs and clutter in your home will make you wish you’d done this years ago.
1. Less Clutter to Manage
Spring cleaning often feels so daunting because of the overwhelming amount of items and spaces we have to clean. Decluttering even a few areas of your home will drastically reduce your cleaning load throughout the year.
Focus on your biggest pain points, like the pantry, your closet, or your junk drawer. The idea is to make your home easier to manage and improve its functionality.
2. Lower Levels of Anxiety and Depression
A messy space is a significant contributor to a cluttered mind. Your piled possessions and long list of silent to-dos could be amping up your likelihood of anxiety and depression.
Women are especially prone to this phenomenon. An oft-cited study from 2010 demonstrates that even a woman’s perception of her home influenced cortisol levels and led to higher or lower levels of depression.
3. No More Silent To-Do List
Whether we realize it or not, the messes in our homes subconsciously scream at us to keep busy.
You can never fully relax if you have too many of these distractions adding to your mental load. It could be the pants hung over a chair you keep meaning to hem or the messy video game cabinet where everything falls out each time you open the door.
Decluttering your possessions and taking the time during your yearly cleaning to tackle these projects removes them from your silent to-do list.
4. Less Guilt
The objects in your home may nag you into action, but they can also bring feelings of guilt or sadness. I’m sure you have at least a few items someone gave you that you don’t like.
You may even be hanging on to clothing that no longer fits your body or personal style. Letting go of these items will clear space in your home, head and heart, leaving you feeling much better for it.
5. Improved Health and Immunity
You can drastically improve your health and immunity by cleaning your home from top to bottom, especially the commonly overlooked areas, along with a thorough declutter of your frequently used spaces.
Allergens and germs cling to surfaces of your home, affecting your entire family’s health until wiped away. You’ll notice almost an immediate difference if you’ve done your job properly.
6. Better Sleep
Clutter and dirty surroundings can affect your ability to fall asleep and rest through the night. The silent to-do list, guilt, anxiety and depression you feel negatively impact your rest.
As you clear that away, your rooms will feel more restful, allowing you to let go of the day and get deep, rejuvenating sleep.
There are so many benefits to experience from decluttering your space!
Places to Clear This Spring for a More Minimal Home
Decluttering may have its benefits, but it won’t happen overnight. Often even the most dedicated converts can’t work that quickly!
However, you can take steps right now to start the process moving in the right direction. These projects will help you begin reaping the benefits of minimalism without too much mental strain.
1. Clear Off Your Surfaces
Clutter breeds more clutter. You’ve likely seen this phenomenon without even realizing it. Your kitchen countertops and end tables are prime suspects.
Clear everything off your flat surfaces, leaving only the items that absolutely have to be there. It will reduce visual clutter, and you’ll be able to clean and keep up your surfaces much easier.
2. Have a Closet Clear Out
Go through your wardrobe before spring starts. Get ruthless with decluttering clothes that you no longer love or wear.
You know which items you’ve been reaching for and what can easily go. Then, when it’s time to shift your wardrobe for spring, all the heavy lifting is done.
3. Reduce the Amount of Toys
If you have kids, you know the strange phenomenon of multiplying toys. Even if you already try to reduce the number of toys you buy your children, they still come from grandparents, aunts and uncles, well-meaning family friends, classmates, teachers, and so on.
Work with your kids to sort through what they no longer play with and could donate to another child. The post-Christmas season is ideal since they’ll be so focused on their new toys.
4. Control Your Paper Clutter
Papers get everywhere, don’t they? Receipts, junk mail, bills, takeout menus and kids’ artwork — it all stacks up.
Make it your goal to sort through all your current papers, pulling things out of drawers and cabinets until you’ve tackled it all. Decluttering paperwork doesn’t have to feel overwhelming. Just tackle one small stack at a time!
You should also introduce a few organized systems to handle incoming paper so it doesn’t get this bad again.
5. Clean out junk areas
Just about everybody has one — the infamous junk drawer. Take a half hour to pull everything out and put it where it belongs, leaving only things of use behind.
It’s entirely possible to make the once-stressful junk drawer into a functional part of your home rather than a stash-all mini horde.
For some, the junk overflows to more than just a drawer, and an entire room becomes full of clutter. Now is the time to reclaim your space by clearing out unnecessary things and returning your room to a functional space.
Address these places to clear for a more minimal home
Simplifying your space this spring will allow you to enjoy living in a more minimal home.
Clearing the clutter will make cleaning and organizing your home a much simpler and easier process.
As the weather warms this coming season you can make full use of both your indoor and outdoor spaces. By being intentional with the items in your home, you can create a place where you feel more relaxed and where you thoroughly enjoy spending time.
Which of the places to clear this spring for a more minimal home do you plan to tackle first? Let us know in the comments.
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Hi, is it okay to hire someone to help you declutter ? Our windows need cleaning, not a huge house. I want to hire someone and my husband wants “us” to do them. I do not mind moving things for this, I do not want to clean them. We have the money. Thanks,
Sure! There’s nothing wrong with hiring help :).
Great ideas! I just need a little nudge to get started. 😉
I am clearing off surfaces first–As it happens, i am actually looking for a new condo, so I am packing away (and recycling/giving away some things) all the things that personalize my home (per realtor’s advice). This includes the walls as surfaces too, so i am taking down all the artwork and wall decor items.
I am also asking myself, “do i want to move this?” when looking at stuff. That is helping me get clear on what i can live without.
I am labeling the boxes i pack in a detailed way, so i can make good choices later about whether to keep certain items.
Thinking of moving soon (if i can find a new place) is really helping me with decluttering. I did a quick scan of my main bookcase last night, using the question of whether i wanted to move each title, and was able to take out two boxes full of books to go to Goodwill. Plus, my bookshelf looks so much nicer now because it isn’t so crowded.
Will probably do clothes next, using that same question: do i want to pack it and move it?
I agree that hiring a lot of undesired tasks is smart–specially when the “us” seems to fall on “me” ! LOL
Thanks so much! I really needed this in my life! I moved into a new smaller house over a year ago and I still have boxes everywhere. I’m drowning in clutter and just didn’t know where to start. Surfaces! I’m on it!!
These are all great tips! So much great information (as always!). Decluttering as you say has SO many benefits! My bedroom (for one) is so restful having everything neat and clean. Even knowing the closet is organized and de-cluttered helps me to relax and ease into slumber! Looking at clutter is very disturbing and must be dealt with.