Summer 2020 is a little different than past summers. Pool parties and bond fires have been put on hold due to the global pandemic and social distancing everywhere is a must. Many of us are finding we are running out of things to do pretty quickly. That's when I realized a great way to spend my free time was cleaning. I know, sounds boring. When someone first suggested it I said "Why would I want to do that." I quickly realized it was an easy way to be productive and fill my time (not to mention I could still watch my favorite shows while doing it.) As I've begun to go through boxes of my childhood things and stacks of stuff I accumulated throughout the last semester, I've picked up a few tips I want to share.
1. Start Small
As a person who tends to take on a lot at once, this was hard for me. I wanted to dive right in and clean it all. However, I quickly realized that wasn't the way to go. The best way I've found to get a lot accomplished while still keeping your house (and sanity) in tact is to clean room by room. Start with one area and work your way through your house.
2. Organize into Groups
When going through a room, I like to sort things into 5 different piles: donate, put away, trash, storage, sell. In the donate pile I put things like clothes, old toys, and other items in good condition I don't use anymore. In the put away pile I put things that belong in other rooms of the house. The trash pile is self explanatory. In the storage pile I put things I want to keep but don't need to be out right now. Lastly, in the sell pile I put items I don't use anymore that other people may want (like electronics and such.)
3. Buy Bins After You Clean
This may sound counter-intuitive but I noticed that I, like many others, want to go to the store to buy all new organizational items (like bins) when I start a new cleaning project. However, I never seem to buy what I actually need or what works in my space. So I found that waiting until after you organize a space before buying these items is a time and money saver.
4. Do You Really Need It?
I found myself asking this question over and over again. And it helped! I got rid of things I've been holding onto for years because I realized I really don't need it. As hard as this is, ask this question to yourself over and over again. I promise you'll find you don't need that thing you've kept in a box and haven't touched in 5 years.
5. Clean After You Organize
This seems like a no brainer, but giving each space a good clean after organizing it is a must! I found this gave me the motivation to keep the space clean after I was done. It allowed me to see and feel how nice it is for the room to feel nice and tidy.
I hope this tips help you as you become more productive and get some cleaning done!