4 Things To Do NOW Before Classes Begin
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Student Life

4 Things To Do NOW Before Classes Begin

Do yourself a favor, take a 5 minute walk around your house or living space, and ask yourself what you would like the place to look like, and how it became the way it is. What would it take to get it where you want it? How much time would that take? Could you break it up to make it less daunting?

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4 Things To Do NOW Before Classes Begin
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When you have a dirty sink, your mind is a dirty sink. Think about it, when you're in the kitchen and you look at and see a dirty sink, where is the sink really appearing? It's in your vision, in your mind, in your consciousness. When you live with and walk past a dirty sink, that dirty sink is a part of you. When you clean the sink, you feel satisfied, a little less on edge, and more relaxed. It's like that with the rest of your life too, when your living space is cluttered, you will feel cluttered.

Now I know what you're thinking, "But Billy, it'd take DAYSto fully get everything in order!!!! Do you realize how much time I'd need to set aside???", and to that I say, "Break the process up, don't make it so structured, instead take the 30 minutes you'd spend mindlessly scrolling social media and spend that time on little things that'd make your living space a little more livable. After all, random time online really isn't that important."

(Hell, if something's already comes to mind as you're reading this, put the article down and go do it! Spoiler Alert: my main point is to do little things when you can, rather than setting aside a whole day for cleaning.)

Without further ado, here's 4 things I've been doing here and there to go into the school year feeling a little more renewed.

Declutter frequently used areas

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I finally moved back to my "college house" after moving back to my parents' at the start of the Pandemic. The ever so familiar instance of grabbing a glass from the cabinet and having Tupperware spill out and all over the counter inspired an afternoon of tidying.

I cleared off the kitchen table, emptied the entire cabinet, and assessed what items were clutter culprits. Turns out, we had a TON of small teacups and plates we never used, multiple Tupperware lids and bottoms with no matches, and too many saved Chinese takeout containers. I sorted anything I knew was frequently used into one pile, and any rarely or untouched dishes into another that went into a box in the basement. As for the Tupperware, I stacked everything I could together and got rid of anything that didn't stack or have matches. I now have this beautiful kitchen cabinet you see pictured above.

Reorganize your room

This one is definitely basic, but bear with me. Look around your room, how many things do you see that you've just put there in the heat of the moment and forgot about, rather than mindfully placing it there after deciding it was a good spot? As I type this, there's a windex bottle sitting on the windowsill in front of me from when I wiped 4 months of dust off my desk and there's papers on my bookshelves that I just threw there telling myself "I'll get to them later" only to have them now become "the random papers sitting on my bookshelf". When busy, it's entirely too easy to just let your room easily clutter up, but spending 30 minutes simply tidying and reorganizing can make a world of difference once you have assignments and notebooks getting throws around daily.

Orgtanize your computers and files

By FAR the most tedious on this list, however it also varies from person to person and the type of computer setup you have. For example I have over 825 total folders in google drive, as well as thousand of gigabytes taken up on both my hard drives (I use a 1TB SSD for windows and programs and a 3TB HDD for games and movies). I used a program called Windir Stat to scan my hard drives and figure out what was actually taking up space. Turns out there's a few folders of nonsense taking up 50+ Gb, as well as a ton of old stuff in Google Drive taking up space. I spent a good half-hour cleaning out my google drive files alone, however I still have many folders inside folders to clean out as well.

My goal is to determine what is worth keeping, moving it all to an external hard drive, and wipe both my drives clean and start new. Something that I know I will not be able to spend a day doing once school starts, however right now I have ample free-time to work towards that.

Tidy up anything that makes you think, "I hate how cluttered this is"

When we initially moved into our house, we had no clue what we were doing, wanted to do, or would do. We just threw things wherever they could go and assumed we'd figure it out as we went along. Fast forward to the fall, and not much figuring out had been accomplished. Instead we had become comfortable with the way things were set up, completely forgetting that "the way things were setup" was just us throwing together whatever worked in the moment. This meant anything we didn't have a proper place for went into a corner in the living room.

While I was away, my roommates took it upon themselves to find a place for anything that didn't have a place, giving me the gift of coming back to a living room that actually looks like a living room and less like a storage room with a few couches and a projector.

BONUS: Learn New Recipes

I threw this on in here because staying well-nourished is important, and when you're well nourished, living in your body feels cleaner and you have more energy to do things. Rather than being about cleaning, this has more to do with teaching yourself new recipes to be comfortable with before school takes over your learning time.

In between all the work getting completed throughout the semester I very frequently forget to cook, oftentimes realizing it was 7pm and I had no plans for dinner. This resulted in many microwaved meals or a thrown together stir-fry (the only and easiest meal I know how to make incorporating multiple food groups).

Yesterday I took it upon myself to find a recipe for my new crock-pot and get the ingredients to cook it. It was very easy to throw together, I look forward to expanding my food repertoire (and my dinner tonight).


Going through my house a year after move-in and reassessing "the way things are" and finding a new "the way things are" is resulting in a much cleaner, pleasing space to spend time in. I know a task like this can seem daunting, but spreading it into small chunks that are done 15-30 minutes a day, over the course of a month makes it a lot more bearable. I've been spending 15-30 minutes here and there doing what I've seen needs to be done, and it's slowly starting to add up and give me a living space I will be happy to live in when it comes time to focus on classes.

All in all, looking at cleaning more as a "do what you can, when you can" rather than a "Wait until you can set aside a ton of time for this" opens a realm where one feels a little more relaxed and willing to keep a clean home.

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This article has not been reviewed by Odyssey HQ and solely reflects the ideas and opinions of the creator.
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