Spring is on the way, and you know what that means: no more tights, wearing other colors besides black, fresh flowers, sun, and of course, spring cleaning.
Cutting clutter is one of the small annoyances that comes with the weather changing, but it's also an opportunity to get rid of the old and make room for the new. Throwing a few things out, donating your unworn items, and cleaning up your space can alleviate anxiety, make you more productive, boost your mood, and help you to welcome the warm weather with open, clutter-free arms.
However, if cleaning is not your thing and none of the aforementioned benefits of a good spring sweep tickle your fancy, perhaps some of these tips and tricks will help to make this year's spring cleaning a little less painful and a whole lot more productive.
1. Does This "Thing" Make Me Happy
The motivating factor of decluttering a space ultimately comes down to our most basic human desire– being happy. When tidying up a space and getting rid of things, ask yourself if everything you have makes you happy. If something doesn't, in the words of organization guru Marie Kondo, "spark joy" inside of you, get rid of it. Having excess things, for no reason, is a huge cause of mess and stress.
2. Clean Up Your Desk, Boost Your Productivity
Are you the type of person who's desk is covered with papers, old coffee cups, a rainbow of sticky notes, stacks of books, and dried out pens? Chances are, you aren't being as productive as you could be. Tidying up your desk can help you to organize your thoughts and work more quickly. Also, if you find that you are snacking heavily while at your desk and craving sweets, your messiness might be the cause of that, according to The Association of Psychological Science. Added plus: your coworkers will definitely notice, and appreciate, your transformed work space.
3. Even Small Efforts Can Make a Big Difference
Tidying up your whole house or apartment seem too daunting? No fear– start small and work your way up. Even tidying up one corner of your apartment can significantly de-stress you. Start with your dishes– organize the shelves, throw away or donate old mugs and cups that you don't use or need anymore, dust the shelves– you'll be surprised how satisfied you feel the next time you go to grab a bowl or plate.
4. Throw Some Music On and Watch Yourself Turn Into a Clean Machine
Cleaning is no fun, we get it. But, let your tidying-time double as shamelessly-blasting-your-favorite-record-and-dancing-around-in-sweatpants-time. Not only does this make vacuuming, dusting, sweeping, or just about any cleaning activity more enjoyable, music boosts endorphin levels and actually makes you happier.
5. Think About How Good You'll Feel After It's All Done
It's true, sometimes things need to get messier before they get cleaner– any woman who has cleaned out her closet at least once can vouch for the truth in that statement. In order to keep the motivation to finish a daunting cleaning project, you have to keep your eye on the big, organized, picture. Once you finish a task, you'll feel fulfilled and proud of yourself, as well as have a tidy place to subsequently relax in.
6. Reward Yourself With a Shiny New Something
It's basic human instinct— hard work merits rewards. Don't be ashamed to reward yourself for doing good work and organizing your space. Buy yourself flowers that'll undoubtably look gorgeous in your newly-refined space, or a new-pretty candle– we mean a real treat, think Diptyque or Jo Malone— and see how they transform your space and simultaneously make you proud of yourself.
7. Letting Go is More Liberating Than You Know
Spring is all about new life and fresh starts. This doesn't just apply to nature– take it upon yourself to use this changing of seasons to spark a change in yourself as well. Get rid of the things that seem to hold you back and remind you of an old chapter of your life. Gifts from an ex? Time for them to go. Pictures with people you are no longer friends with? Throw them away. If something no longer has productive value to your life, don't be afraid to let it go. Trust us, you'll feel both a figurative and literal weight lifted off of you when you do.