It’s time to spring forward! Well technically the official start of spring happened last week with the time change but we know it can take a few days or even a week to adjust. Took me a week to shake that hazy, almost jet lag feeling. And now that the limbo feeling has subsided, although we lost an hour, I’m enjoying that extra hour of daylight in the evenings. Getting home when it’s still light outside keeps me motivated to get more of my to-do list done throughout the week so I can enjoy more fun on the weekends. What do you do with your extra hour of sunshine at the start of this season?
Spring cleaning comes to mind for a lot of us during this time - deep clean the house, organize the garage, start tending more to your garden and/or landscape, make home improvements, downsize your wardrobe or other closets filled with unnecessary items you’ve been meaning to get rid of. Whatever it may be for some reason this season gets us in a cleaning mindset to get ready for the summer and it feels so good! If we get more done now then that leaves us much more time to enjoy the summer months. If you’re looking for a way to get started, Merry Maids has put together a simple spring cleaning checklist for every room in your home!
Now if you’re someone who has already incorporated this kind of checklist into your life, these things may already be done daily, weekly or monthly as it’s just a part of your routine. You may have already taken the time to figure out what works best for you, your busy schedule, lifestyle and home. So why not try a different kind of spring cleaning this year? Ever thought of taking this time to really “spring clean” your life? I highly encourage you to continue reading and truly take these tips to heart and clean out your life - mental health is the core of all of us and the more we can serve ourselves, the more we can serve others.
The first step in starting a new routine that is super helpful is writing a to-do list or checklist. But have you heard of a “not-to-do list”? I hadn’t until I stumbled upon the WATCHHERWORK site. They have written an extensive list of 55 Ways to Spring Clean Your Life and Work and starts out with what not to do.
- Review commitments - Are you participating in activities that you are no longer passionate about? If it doesn’t feed your spirit, cut it. Time is precious and life is too short to do stuff you don’t really care about.
- Check your time allocation - Remember the Pareto Principle 20% of your activities yield 80% of your return. Are you spending time with the wrong people? Doing the wrong work? With the wrong clients?
We are always so focused on adding things to our routines and lives to make things easier and more efficient, but have you truly taken the time to sit down and think of the things that are not serving you any longer? Finding out what these things are and removing them or reprioritizing them in your life is a great place to start your cleaning. Before setting out in making your to-do list this spring, start with your not-to-do list first and tackle those!
So where do you start your to-do list to clean out the clutter that surrounds your inner and outer self? You can search “spring cleaning your life” and the lists out there are endless! I have compiled an easy, beginners to-do list here to give you a simple list to start out:
- Start or revamp your fitness routine - need some help in starting? Check out a previous blog I wrote with some great starter ideas - Move Your Body! Or if you already have a good fitness routine, why not add something or change up your routine to give your body a nice challenge?
- Create a budget or go over your current one - Take a look of what money is coming in and how it’s going out. Are you happy with your current habits? How can you refresh these habits to help you reach your financial goals?
- Take time each day to declutter your mind - schedule 10-15 minutes with yourself each morning and/or night to be silent with yourself and breathe. You’d be surprised with just this little amount of time can do for your anxiety and mood. You schedule your appointments, so why not schedule some time in for yourself to start and/or end the day better?
- Get rid of physical clutter - we all have that junk drawer that we hate opening or even a spot on our dining table or in our kitchen or bedroom. Every time we look at it, it stresses us out or gives us anxiety. Just go through it and start pitching things that you have not used in the last 6-12 months! You’ll feel so much better getting just that little area taken care of.
- Go through your closet - if you have not worn it in the past year (and it’s not a special occasion outfit for weddings or parties and such) and/or if it does not fit, get rid of it! How do you know if you’ve worn it in the past year though? Best trick I was taught was to hang all of your hangers backwards (with the tip of the hook pointing towards you). When you wear something and put it back on the hanger after washing, turn the hanger back to how it normally would go. Within a year you can see what you haven’t worn and what needs to go. Genius!
- Find a new hobby - been wanting to try something new? Do it!
- Have an unsubscribing session - unsubscribe from subscriptions you don’t use (and are possibly paying too much for). Can you combine your services for a cheaper price? Hit that unsubscribe button to advertisement emails - especially the ones you haven’t ordered from in the past 6 months. If it’s not benefitting you, get rid of it!
- Clear out your technology - delete everything that does not bring you inner peace! Go through your phone, tablet, computer and your social media. Clear out the information you have on apps that is not necessary, delete contacts/people and photos on all devices and pages that do not bring you joy. Unfriend, unfollow, and unlike pages and people that bring you any negativity. Fill those spaces with positive people who truly support and motivate you to be a better you.
- Reflect on this year so far and what your future goals are - write them down! How are you doing since the start of the year? What do you need to change to reach some of the goals you set for yourself? Are you on track?
- Check your attitude - your mindset is everything! It affects everything around you. For every negative situation or thing that may happen, try to find the positive. You’d be surprised how much easier most situations can turn out if you just take a second to breathe and think more positively. Figure out if it’s a blessing or a lesson - change things if needed.
If you are looking for something more in depth and really want to dive into more than what I have listed above, The Everygirl site has created a month long list that really digs into deep cleaning not only your life but throws in some household items as well so you do not feel overwhelmed! If you want a great 30-day challenge, check out their “Spring-Clean Your Life in 30 days” post. They have even broke it down on a free downloadable list for you so that you can keep track of what your to-do’s each week and check off as you go. I don’t know about you, but I love the gratification I get when physically checking something off of my lists!
Whatever you choose to do, take this spring season to clean up the clutter in your life and do something for yourself! Life is too short to be anything but happy, so don’t entertain the things that do not bring you joy and inner peace any longer.