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Spring into Action

The origin of spring cleaning is a little uncertain. It may have started as the process of clearing up winter chimney soot, though others suspect it could be rooted in the Persian New Year or Jewish Passover celebrations.

Even biology might explain our desire to spring clean: increasing hours of day-light tend to make us feel more energized. Regardless of your motivation, embrace the season of rebirth and make some wholesome changes with these modern spring-cleaning tips.

1. KonMari Method

In January 2019, thrift stores across the country saw a significant jump in the number of charitable donations received. The reason? Netflix’s release of the show Tidying Up with Marie Kondo inspired thousands to declutter and give away unwanted things. Explore Kondo’s method yourself by keeping only items that bring you joy.

2. Professional Polish

Take a moment to refresh your workspace—and online presence. Could your desk use a massive reorganization or just a simple wipe-down? When was the last time you updated your résumé or LinkedIn profile? Try spending a few minutes in these easy freshening-up efforts.

3. A Fresh Mentality


Recent research found that married American mothers—even moms who are the family breadwinners—spend almost twice as much time on chores and childcare than their spouses do. If you’re married, take time to evaluate your role in household work and find an appropriate workload balance for you and your spouse.

4. Planet Janitor

While you’re tidying up the house, consider ways you could help clean up the earth a little too. You can help the planet by recycling, planting a garden or tree, getting involved in a community cleanup, investing in a bicycle or public transit pass for your commute, or looking for consumer products with smaller carbon footprints.

5. Tidy Tech

Deep cleaning can be overwhelming to think about. Find a starting point with a variety of cleaning apps such as Spring Cleaning Checklist (for Android), which suggests jobs to tackle in each room of your home. Also try organizational apps such as Cozi, Evernote, or Busy Kid for help with a different kind of mess: a chaotic family schedule.

6. Dead Man’s Goals

Sweep a bad habit out of your life by avoiding “dead man’s goals,” which require only inactivity (e.g., “don’t eat out a lot” or “don’t spend too many hours on social media”). Instead, make goals that require action, such as “cook dinner five times per week” or “go to bed by 10:30 p.m.”

7. Screen-Free Clean

Streaming TV shows is great when you’re doing mindless tasks such as laundry or the dishes. But when you’re doing the less familiar jobs often required by spring cleaning, the screen can become distracting and actually slow down work. Listen to podcasts or audiobooks instead to stay productive.

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Written by Clarissa McIntire

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