Spring Cleaning!

cleaning-window

 cleaning-window”by newlivinghouston is licensed under CCBY 2.0

It’s time to clean up…

People have been cleaning up in the spring for a long time. It’s not just a made-up ad campaign to get you to buy more paper towels and Windex. In some cultures, the motivation is religious, in others, it’s more practical. Deep cleaning every so often is just a good practice. There’s gross stuff that collects in the corners. Clutter is distracting, dust can make you ill, and letting go can help you focus on work or studies. Here are a few tips for cleaning up your life.

…your house

Routine cleaning for many of use involves stuffing things in drawers, that scarf you haven’t seen since January, the cellphone bill you didn’t pay in December, and the holiday card from grandpa with a thirty-dollar check. And when was the last time you cleaned behind the toilet? We all know we can find t.v. remotes, Cheerios, and about fifteen dollars of change under that couch. But where do you start with the rest of the house? How do you
start at all when there are so many places? Pro-tip: Pick a few of these to tackle in a weekend. And give yourself a little reward for each one you check off.

Here’s a short list of places to target:

  • Under the couch (I like to start here, because I know I’ll find rewards!)
  • Under the sink, you may find some cleaning supplies you didn’t know you had
  • Behind and under electronics like cable boxes and blue ray players
  • Every junk-drawer, everywhere
  • The bottom of the closet (Donate those shoes you haven’t worn in two years.)
  • Heater vents (professional help may be worthwhile here)
  • Under the bed (There are more shoes you can donate here.)
  • The pantry (Rotate stock, donate food that you probably won’t eat.)
  • The garage or shed

…your life

Cleaning up isn’t just about the physical world. There’s some cleaning up in your life that can be done. Identifying bad habits or things that you do that are holding you back from achieving your goals is a great way to find what you can ‘clean’ in your life.

Here are some suggestions:

  • Do you watch too much television?
  • Are you a smoker or vaper?
  • Do you make excuses about not exercising?
  • Are you honest with your friends and family?
  • Is your job rewarding, or just paying the bills? Could you be earning more?

…your schedule

Unloading relationships and obligations that aren’t rewarding will free up some time for whatever your current priorities are. Take stock of how you spend your day. At night before bed, look back over your day and write down what you did: Television: 30 minutes, getting ready for work: 30 minutes, Eating breakfast: 15 minutes, etc. This will help you identify where you might be able to free up time. Drinks with your ex, that’s probably something you can skip. And the 20-minute coffee break to gossip about what happened to that guy who got fired yesterday, you could have polished up your resume in that time.

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