Your spring cleaning may be delayed due to the pandemic…or is it? Any reason to open the windows to welcome the crisp breeze is a good one. Especially, to release the not so fresh cooped up feelings over months of winter. While you revel in this, have you ever wondered why we even have this tradition of spring cleaning? The practice of spring cleaning for some cultures occurs either in spring or winter based on the calendar year. This tradition stems from Jewish, Iranian, and Chinese cultures dating back centuries. This marks the time of a new cycle with a clean slate.
Staring at the Four Walls Can Spark Ideas
Your ability to get out and about has been curtailed with the pandemic. As a result, you are asked to pivot and get creative.
Do you remember as a kid drawing on walls in your childhood home? Well, why not draw a scenic meadow and paint it? Maybe you decide it’s time to add a fresh coat of paint to a dull room or update the look of a room. Let your inner Picasso out! Each present moment allows you to step out and explore ways to express yourself where you may have held back.
The point is you need to find what keeps you vibrant. Spring cleaning is similar. You look at what you don’t and do need to keep your home vibrant.
However, for some, whether it’s the ‘yuck’ of grime, or simply not knowing where and how to begin, spring cleaning can feel like a grind. Here are three reasons why spring cleaning isn’t a chore:
1. Plan with One Room in Mind
Start small. Your morale will be contagious when you see one room fully cleaned compared to unsuccessfully cleaning six rooms all at the same time. Pick one room or space you have been aching to reclaim yet has been delayed because of fun distractions like time with family over zoom calls.
Make a list of cleaning basics. Either order online or visit a local store to purchase rubber gloves, wipes (microfiber or green disposable), mop, broom, and preferred cleaning supplies such as plant-based cleaning products (for those with allergens).
Now that you have all your cleaning items, focus on the one room or space only. For example, if it’s the mudroom, begin to:
Tidy. Start by picking up four or five boxes and label them — Sort Later, Donate, Trash, Don’t Know Why I Have This, Keep. Pick stray items up like toys (if there are children in your home), coats/jackets, old gloves, old boots/shoes, odd pairs of socks, knick-knacks that will come in handy one day, etc.
Dust. Begin to shake out small rugs and items that collect dust from outside.
Wipe. If mudroom is tiled, sweep then mop.
Planning ahead prevents you from feeling stretched for time and eliminates the need to do everything in one day.
2. Family That Sticks Together Can Clean Together
According to American Cleaning Institute ACI, a survey by Wakefield Research revealed 78% of Americans spring clean their homes. There’s a lot of you who care about living and feeling well in your home.
Rather than feel spring cleaning is time and labor-intensive engage your family in the cleaning duties. If you have children, assign age-appropriate duties by creating games. For example:
· Eye spy: whoever can find the most books/magazines/etc.
· Speed game: who can gather the most or clean a room the fastest.
· Dice game: the person who rolls the number (you choose) must clean the bathroom.
3. Clean Grime With Gratitude
Sometimes you may not have a lot of helping hands especially if you need to get behind the stove to remove all dust and food particles. Does the thought of this grime make you cringe?
I know it makes me cringe. Cleaning, all things considered, is last on the list of your activities. As you tackle the grime, remember, the pandemic teaches you what humility there is in cherishing your home, despite being asked to remain indoors.
Gratitude (not in platitudes, but genuine gratitude) means you don’t have to sweat the small grime in comparison to the appreciative hug of a loved one.
So, this time around, it’s okay to go easy on the spring cleaning tradition. While you may be unable to do a full scrub down on your home, you can be thankful to have:
· Precious time with family…
· A roof over your head and a warm bed…
· Clean drinkable water and nourishing food…
· Access to the internet…
….to name a few.
And, if the caged-up feeling is driving you and your household bunkers, remember you can start a new spring cleaning tradition to fit your family needs.
The most important thing is your well-being and those of your loved ones. With this in mind, the promise of spring is enough to get you through many things. You can feel a shift in your energy. Get your family members involved so you too can put your feet up to enjoy the pleasant spring breeze.
How do you make spring cleaning fun? Share your favorite tips.