Yep! It's that time of year again! Spring is, finally, on its way. But! Not yet... I am fortunate that I live in Los Angeles, where the weather has been a bit rainy and dreary this week, but it is absolutely nothing compared to what my family and friends on the East Coast, and in the Northeast, have been dealing with.
Wherever you may reside, if you did not do a post-Holiday sweep of your home, spring is the time to really renew and refresh your space.
But do not fret! If you are stressing about not being able to tackle your entire home, we are going to break down a few things for you that will help you be on your way. Promise!
Hang on to your hat! Here we go:
1. Choose the "big" project you have been dreading- and get to it!
This may sound counter-intuitive, but tacking something you have been putting off-painting a closet or kitchen cabinets, grouting the tiles in the shower, cleaning your windows inside and out-whatever you've had on a physical or mental list to get finished. If you have to go get painting supplies, take this weekend to go do it, a few hours to plan out and organize the task, and start it. There is really no need to take two full days to do most projects like this...You can shoot for a few hours on both Saturday and Sunday, or just part of a Saturday. Put off any other errands and chores you may have, get your partner, friend or babysitter to watch the kids -until you dig into this one project.
Here's what will probably happen...
You may balk at this. Wake up Saturday, and want to go back to sleep, or off to brunch, or hit your Netflix queue. Guess what? You can treat yourself AFTER, not to worry! You will see your friends and get to watch Netflix again, I promise! But seriously, I am not making light of this. These blocks can be huge, and are often paralyzing. Because- if you are blaming your inability to do more important things (your novel or screenplay, painting, starting a side business, looking for a new job, checking out and organizing your finances) on the fact of your looming household projects, there is no other way to get over this, than to get through it, and to tackle what is holding you back.
"What, little ole' me?" you may be saying? Yes, you! A lot of us do this, and the easiest way to stop it is to just...start it! Just start, in any way you can, if blocking off the whole or part of the weekend is too overwhelming. That's okay.
THEN, here's what will happen...
After you start, even if it's just taping of the edge, to paint, or doing the bathroom windows, inside only: YOU WILL START TO FEEL SOME STRANGE, NEW ENERGY! You will start to feel that, gasp, you will be able to possibly finish this project, maybe even someday very soon! You may want stop. But, the very next moment, you will want to keep going! You will realize what a badass you are for even starting this thing! Screw it, you will say to yourself- "I'm gonna finish this!
2. Do a Mini-Sweep of Your Home
*Disclaimer: You are going to need a few baskets and/or bins to do this. It is not necessary to buy these. Most of us have these in our garage, closets or laundry rooms. Go grab 'em now!
- For all I know, you may have some spare holiday decorations or pillows or something hanging around. Are you kidding me? Get rid of those things! Pack them off into storage, the garage or attic.
- Lighten up any textiles, pillows or blankets that are too heavy, and pack them in wherever they normally go in your home. If your weather is still lousy, you may want to toss some of your quilts and blankets into the dryer, on low, with some dryer sheets to freshen them up.
- Recycle any magazines, newspapers, catalogues or mail that you can glance at any know they are meant to toss into your bin. Do not take longer than ten or fifteen minutes to do this. If you have a pile of mail that is getting to be real a bitch, find a cute, small basket and put it in there for now, and lay it on your kitchen table or counter.
- Gather your children's toys in large plastic bins and ask them if they want to donate anything to a child less fortunate.
- Take a lint roller to your sofa and stuffed chairs or sectional if you have dogs and/or cats.
- Take another basket or bin, and literally clear off your coffee table, minus any important papers or bills. (Just do it, trust me!)
- Take your natural, all-purpose spray cleaner, a clean rag, and wipe down all of the light fixtures and door knobs in the house.
- Clean the window sills the same way. Just a light dusting will do just fine.
- Open the fridge, peer in, and toss out at least one or two (or three! Or Four!) items that are expired. If you can't find any you are A). Lying or B.) A Very Good Person! I'm kidding. I honestly hate throwing away food, but it really does happen to the best of us!
- Okay, now STOP! (Take a break, you sexy, cleaning thing you.)
3. Make a List. Be Ruthless.
Okay. How does it feel to have done the above? GOOD. Am I right? You know I am! Because I know this high, and it's the best feeling ever. That's what we're going for, here. A taste of feeling that accomplishment that comes from doing something wonderful for yourself. I do not care if you finished or even start the big project. If you are reading this far, you are motivated to galvanize your space, and maybe did a few things off of the list above. I hope so! It's important to know that what's holding you back on the outside directly corresponds to what's holding you back -inside. Once you can accept this fact, you will no longer be able to BS yourself, and you be able to banish these household tasks and slay these domestic dragons as easy as brushing your teeth in the mornings. (And you better be doing that!)
Now, start making a list of what you want to do to your home this spring, and what needs to sorted and cleaned and made better. Maybe you are pretty clean and tidy already, and do not need to do a massive spring-clean this year. Maybe you'd just like to focus on decluttering, or, if you've been doing that awhile, selling some of your old things on Poshmark, Craigslist, or eBay. Maybe your garage is a disaster, and you want to focus on that. If it’s a big project, break it down in ten to twelve actionable baby steps. If it's a general "To-Do" cleaning list, just randomly list what comes to mind.
You are going to feel so good by Sunday night, I promise you... (And even if you don't, you still started!)
Yay! Feel good. And cue your next Netflix marathon!
P.S.-Just in case you do some of those baskets...Click below: