Spring is well and truly here, with more light in the day both increasing the warmth of your home and highlighting the dust in its corners. More than just a bridge between winter and summer, spring is a time to start fresh, a time to hit the reset button on everything that has been and lay the foundations for a better tomorrow. Spring cleaning is well-established across much of the world, with this practical and effective ritual helping you to take stock and get your home ready for the summer ahead.
Spring cleaning has its origins in the Persian new year, with Iranians engaging in the practice of 'khooneh tekouni', which literally means "shaking the house". This is a great way to approach your annual spring clean, which when done right, will shake everything up just enough so that it settles down in the right place. While it might sound cliché, organisation is the key to every successful clean. Before you start, it's important to create a detailed plan of attack to ensure that nothing is left to chance.
Perhaps the most important thing to understand about spring cleaning is that it's more than just cleaning. While spring de-cluttering and spring tidying don't have quite the same ring to them, it's important not to limit your options. For example, throwing away unused belongings or giving them to charity can have a huge impact on your lifestyle and your frame of mind. Getting rid of things doesn't just create more space in your home, it also creates potential for new exciting things to come into your life. Organising your belongings can also have a powerful effect, so create a special place for your special stuff to help improve the flow of your life.
Spring cleaning is best approached in a top-down manner, by doing the big jobs first and filling in the gaps as you go. For example, there's no point spending all of your time organising your third-drawer if your entire office space looks like a tip. Time is very finite when it comes to cleaning, so start with the things that matter and don't get lost in the details. Along with an important abstract idea, working from the top-down is also an essential practical skill. Whenever you're cleaning a room, start with the ceiling fans, light fittings, and cobwebs and work your way down to avoid dust from falling onto surfaces you've already cleaned.
Along with working from the top-down, it's also important to compartmentalise. More than just dusting or wiping away the mould, spring cleaning is about putting things in the right place and creating new habits for the season ahead. Attacking one room at a time is a great idea, that way you can avoid the frustration of taking on too much and getting nowhere. Once you've cleaned a bathroom or bedroom successfully, you'll feel fantastic and have enough motivation to take on the rest of the house. While it's easier said than done, spring cleaning is also much more effective when it's fun. Put on some music to help you get lost in your work, or clean alongside a house mate to help share the load.
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