Spring Decluttering || Using the Seasons to Jumpstart Minimizing Success
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Spring is the season of new beginnings. There’s no better time to use these pro tips to jumpstart your minimalist home goals with seasonal decluttering!
Many people instinctually start decluttering in January, but burnout a few days in because it’s cold, dreary and there’s very little natural motivation to continue. In the middle of winter, our natural tendency is to curl up at home and relax. Energy levels are down, the days are shorter and darker, and the weather is uninviting.
While you can certainly still declutter in January, I recommend following the seasonal ebb and flow to create a year-round plan for success. You can find the whole year of seasonal organizational maintenance here.
Instead of the middle of winter, I’d encourage you to take advantage of spring for a full-on decluttering party. Why?
- Spring is a season of new life and new beginnings. Your mindset will be naturally motivated to get rid of things that belong in your past and move forward with today and your future.
- As you look towards the future, you’re thinking about summer and how you can prepare for it–a great time to clean up and clean out for new adventures!
- The weather is slightly warmer (in most places), making it easier to work in all rooms of the house as well as outside.
- The days are brighter and longer, encouraging an increase in natural energy levels and uplifted moods.
What Should You Declutter in Spring?
There are two approaches to decluttering in spring. First, if you’re just starting, you can do an initial decluttering purge of every area in your home. Or, you can take a slower approach and focus only on a few areas each season of the year.
The slower approach is most commonly used as a maintenance method once the initial decluttering is completed, but it can also be effective as a methodical way to work through the home for a first wave purge.
With this in mind, you set the guidelines for how much, or how little you want to cover. When you declutter, it’s personal. There are benefits to every method from practical quick win areas to sorting through and asking yourself tough questions about each and every item you own.
They all have value and you will likely use a combination of methods as you go through your home.
Whether you’re digging in for the first time or just doing some maintenance, the work you’re doing is valuable and worth celebrating!
Making Space with Spring Decluttering
During the spring months of March, April, and May, the natural shifting of seasons will inspire you to look out the windows and toward the next phase of life. While you see the blossoms appear on plants and the sun peeking out a little more, you’ll want to pay attention to a few areas of the home that have probably been ignored during winter: office paperwork, doors and entryways and outside in the yard.
Paperwork & the Home Office
This is a great time to sit in your office area (or wherever you have papers, bills, and files) and focus on preparing taxes and also decluttering and organizing paperwork.
Go through all your receipts, keeping only what is needed for business or tax records or for product return or warranties. I have a small plastic bin where I keep all my manuals, receipts and instructions for appliances and household items. Eliminate the digging and rummaging by keeping it organized in one place.
If you run a business, sort through your records. Update your files, discard or give away papers, supplies, and books that are outdated, didn’t suit your needs, or are just collecting dust. File all your important papers together, letting go of ideas you know you’ll never use, things that sounded good at one point in the past or concepts that didn’t work.
I’ve let go of books, courses, materials and countless systems that I invested in over the years but just didn’t end up working for me. These are hard to part with because you spent money on them, but it’s important to move on from the weight and guilt items like this put on us. Set them aside, evaluate their worth, feel all the feelings, but ultimately, let them go if they don’t have a place in your future!
This is also a good time to look around your office area and consider if there are any pieces of furniture you can part with. Maybe you can downsize your clunky filing cabinet to a simple tote box by getting rid of unnecessary paperwork. Maybe you can swap out your executive desk and shelving unit for a simple table or student desk.
Perhaps bookshelves, storage units or extra chairs could be moved on. An office that has open space and clear, organized areas will be more productive and less stressful to work in.
Doors & Entryways
In spring we start looking to the outdoors, which means doors and entryways are going to be frequently used and guests may be coming in and out more often as well.
Take some time to open the windows and turn on the lights so you can fully see around each door and entryway. Clean the cobwebs, dust the doorframe and wash any windows.
If you have surfaces that collect clutter in your entryway, clean it out and try to think of ways to deter that from happening again. Hang up keys and coats. Find a place for shoes and purses. Create a system to go through the mail at the door and recycle junk mail before it even hits a surface.
If you have a mudroom, front room, porch or sunroom, go through those areas, freshening and moving winter items out as the weather warms up.
Springtime is also a transition from cold weather clothing to lighter weight clothes. Go through your closet and drawers, letting go of any clothes you haven’t worn, that don’t fit or are in poor condition. Pack away winter clothes that you want to keep for the next year and store them out of sight.
Outdoors & the Yard
Time to get outside and clean up the yard for all the summer activities to come! Take a look at all the things you have stored around the yard. Toys, plants, sports equipment, entertaining and furniture. Declutter any items that are broken, unneeded or beyond repair.
Wash and wipe down surfaces. Clear out the cobwebs. If you’re ambitious, add some touch-up paint to any chipped wood.
Look at your storage and organization. Do you have a shed? Cabinet? Chest? Go through and clean out things that don’t have a place in your life anymore. What have your kids outgrown? Could you downsize or find a better way to keep items cared for and in good condition?
Final Thoughts on Spring Decluttering
While you can declutter your entire house in spring (yay you!), sometimes it’s helpful to address a few important areas to make the most of the season. Go through your paperwork, entryways and outdoors and make the way for clutter free summer fun with your family!
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Related Articles on Decluttering
- Decluttering Through All Four Seasons || A Year of Organizational Maintenance
- Decluttering Your House When You Don’t Know Where to Start
- Keeping Your Stuff for “Someday” is a Trap
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