7 Practical Tips for Spring Cleaning with Joy
- Lane Jordan Burday Crosswalk.com Contributing Writer
- 2020 13 May
Yep, it’s that time of year: Time to open and clean windows, flip mattresses, clean bedding, and pretty much what-ever-cleaning-needs-to-be-done-now-that-the-weather-is nicer and we want to get our homes spruced up!
But, is it all work or could we have a different kind of motivation behind it this time?
You’ve likely heard of Marie Kondo’s book, the Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up. It is one of my favorite books ever on the subject of organizing. The heart of her message is helping people get rid of unneeded things in their homes and closets--which can truly weigh them down.
This book gave me a ‘light-bulb moment’: “Hold each item,” she says, “and ask, ‘Does it spark joy?’” If the answer is yes, keep it. If the answer is no, then give it away.
The peace of mind you will experience in your home is something God wants for you to feel like your best self.
So, I’d like to give you a practical list of what you might want to spring clean. (Of course, this is just a list – don’t feel pressure that you have to do it all or now. Only you know what will bring you joy with your spring cleaning).
And then while you are cleaning and decluttering, ask yourself which possessions give you joy…and which don’t. What a great way to get rid of all our stuff!
1. Start in the Bedrooms
Launder all mattresses and pillow covers, dust ruffles, blankets and comforters. Go through your dresser and bedside tables and declutter. Vacuum under the bed and behind furniture. Get rid of anything that’s causing too much clutter as old magazines, unused exercise equipment, etc. Your goal should be a clutter-free, calming effect so that you will want to sleep there!
Launder all shower curtains or clean shower doors and tracks. Go through your towels/linen closet and throw away any old towels/sheets that are ratty. Submerge your shower head in a plastic bag full of warm vinegar and secure with a zip tie and allow to soak until clean. Clean floors, counters, sinks, toilet, bathtub and mirrors like you never have! Go through bathroom cabinets and drawers and throw away all outdated items and prescriptions.
ou may want to clear out/organize all your cabinets and drawers, especially your pantry--throw out all outdated food, old flour, old spices, cereal, and anything that could cause bugs to come in. Clean and wipe insides of drawers (especially the utensil drawers), cabinets inside and outside, counters, stovetop, microwave, oven, inside of garbage cans, backsplashes and appliances.
Empty and scrub down the inside of your refrigerator and throw away any food or condiments that are old. Also: In an empty dishwasher, put a cup of vinegar into the dispenser and run a cycle to clean it. End with a good cleaning of the floor.
From your hall closet that keeps your heavy coats to all your clothes closets, these can be the hardest to get back in shape. I know organizing my closet to get ready for a new season is my hardest task. I go through every item and pull out: those items that need to be cleaned and stored away for next season; those items I’m ready to give away; and those items that are in good shape and can stay in my closet.
I also go through all my drawers, belts, scarves and jewelry and try to reduce to just what I love to wear. NOTE: Have your children do the same with their own closets to teach them at an early age! Then when they are finished, you can make a list of all they need for the next season, now that you have an organized closet.
Photo Credit: ©Unsplash/Sarah Brown
Many of us work from home. Now is the time to clear clutter off all your work surfaces and make specific places for papers and work items; go through paper files; clear out old electronic files; clean your laptop, mouse and keyboard (with compressed air).
Organize photos, bills, insurance papers, etc. and make sure you have all important documents, passports, will, etc. in one designated place. Organize your supply area and make a list of items (as printer ink) that you need to buy. Vacuum or clean the floor, windows, trash cans.
6. Laundry room
I personally feel that this room should be as organized as possible. Why? Because clothes are expensive and where we wash and how we wash clothes is very important. For those of you with children at home, you will probably have to wash clothes daily.
Make a weekly plan of when you will wash bed sheets and towels; darks and lights; sports clothes; rugs; and dog/cat blankets. Keep your detergents in one place and separate baskets for dark and light clothes. Also, time the dryer so that you can take out clothes while still slightly damp and hang or layout to reduce wrinkles.
(NOTE: I have just been taught that fabric softeners and fabric sheets are toxic. They leave a coating on your clothes. I have stopped using them and instead use dryer balls in my dryer. I also use a laundry detergent that I make myself.)
Dust/clean all your air and heating vents throughout the house. Visit a bargain store and find great organizing items as over-the-door shoe holders, shower caddies, towel holders, hooks, plastic bins and drawer dividers. The best way to reduce clutter? Use hooks, bins and shelving to keep items in their correct zones!
I think what helps motivate me to clean and organize is that I really want the finished result! I love my home best when it is clean and free of clutter. When I can walk into my closet and all my clothes are where they are supposed to be – on hangers or in drawers and not in a heap on the floor – I feel like a new person! I have JOY!
And yet it really is hard to keep a house running smoothly and in order as well as keeping up with all our children’s activities, paperwork, our work, time with our husband and our personal items, I know that. But I also know that a little effort every day can pay off in huge dividends later.
My 10 Minute Quick Clean has revolutionized many of your households: Each night before you go to bed you “quick clean/organize” the living areas of your house. You pick up any item that is laying around and put it back in its place; you straighten the room; sweep/swifter the floor; set out breakfast items; make sure all book bags and your purse, etc. is by the door; close down computers and turn off lights.
The next morning before you leave for the day do a “quick clean/organize” all the sleeping areas of your house: Make beds, wipe down bathroom counters, take dirty laundry to laundry room, pick up items that are laying around and put back in their place.
Just these quick 10-minutes can really help you stay on top of the clutter that wants to take over your home!
Remember, the best reward of cleaning and getting rid of clutter and stuff and you will feel like a ton of weight has been lifted off your shoulders!
Looking at our everyday task and responsibilities, we see that not all of them are enjoyable. But we can ask, “How can this spark joy in God’s heart and in my own?” A change in why we do things can bring a transformation in the way we feel about them.
Finally, brothers and sisters, whatever is true, noble, right, pure, lovely, admirable--if anything is excellent or praiseworthy--think about such things. Philippians 4:8
For God is not a God of disorder but of peace. 1 Corinthians 14:33
Photo Credit: ©Getty Images/shironosov
Lane Jordan Burday is a writer, best-selling author, international motivational and inspirational speaker, singer, artist, Bible teacher, and professional life coach. She lives in Frisco, Texas with her husband who partners with her in ministry and waits impatiently for daughters and granddaughter to visit! Lane’s desire is to encourage, support, and motivate women of all ages to be better wives, mothers, and women of God by organizing their lives and time. You can find her at: www.LaneJordanMinistries.com and her blog at www.PathwaysToOrganization.com.