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Spring Cleaning – Successful Methods for Simpler Living

Spring arrives slowly and suddenly, from a shift in the air to the arrival of unfurling blossoms. We can feel it before it makes its full appearance, our bones waking from their winter rest. With this unfurling, our energy shifts, and we feel ready to face the coming warmth. In this readiness, we take stock of our lives and home and feel a natural urge to clean and reorganize. 

Spring cleaning is following the natural desire to ready one’s living environment for the warmer months. This entails cleaning, decluttering, and organizing the home and workspace, as well as cleansing and detoxing one’s physical body.

Beginning this process can feel a bit daunting, especially when it feels like there’s a lot to do. In this guide, I’ll give you tips to help you get started, and how to stay motivated to see it through. Plus, you’ll learn that detoxing isn’t just for your home, but for your health as well. 

What Is Spring Cleaning?

As the days continue to lengthen, and your energy grows, you may notice the house is in a bit of a disarray. Dust covers the bookshelves and windowsills, your closet is filled with unused clothes, and don’t even mention the state of the pantry. 

Cleaning spray bottle - Spring Cleaning - Gone Minimal
Cleaning spray bottle

That’s how I feel about my home, and I’m sure you have spaces in your home that feel similar. Spring cleaning is about taking stock of the places that need to be addressed and following through by cleaning/organizing them. 

Spring cleaning is nothing new, and one has probably heard the phrase a number of times throughout their life. Most often, people relate this to their home and workspace, but I believe it also has to do with our health and the shift of the season. 

Spring Cleaning For Your Health

Historically, the winter was a time of eating filling, dense meals in the form of meat and potatoes (for my European heritage that is). You may have noticed that during the cold months you desire dense, carb-filled meals more than you do during the warmer months. I believe this is part of our evolution as humans and what is occurring in the natural world. When the season shifts into spring, our bodies want light foods, such as dark leafy greens and vegetables to help release the heaviness of winter. 

Spring has sprung - Spring Cleaning - Gone Minimal
Spring has sprung

Some of the first wild edibles to arrive in spring are Chickweed, Cleavers, and Dandelion*. These are medicinal herbs that are classified as alternatives, meaning they strengthen and encourage the natural detoxification processes of one’s body. One scientific study by Pubmed confirmed that dandelion leaf extract may be a suitable treatment for obesity-related nonalcoholic fatty liver disease. This is because it has properties that naturally strengthen and detoxify the liver, among many other properties that promote healthy digestion and secretion. 

If interested in learning more about the medicinal benefits and scientific research on Chickweed, Stellaria media, check out this study on the therapeutic potentials of chickweed published by NCBI. 

I don’t believe it is by coincidence that these wild medicinals arrive in early spring when our bodies are beginning to crave more greens and we need to shed the toxins we’ve accumulated over winter. In this way, Spring cleaning is just as important for our health as it is for our home, and it’s a great time to drink more cleansing juices and smoothies. 

Fresh fruit smoothie - Spring Cleaning - Gone Minimal
Fresh fruit smoothie

Pro Tip: Before you start cleaning/organizing your space, make yourself a delicious green smoothie to enjoy. Here are a few of my favorite ingredients: 

  • Freshly pressed carrot and beet juice
  • Bananas
  • Strawberries
  • Blueberries
  • Kale
  • Spinach
  • Beet greens 
  • Chard 
  • Cashew-based vanilla yogurt (or yogurt of choice). 
  • Orange juice (or juice of choice). 

You can decide how much of each you would like in your smoothie. The fresh beet juice is great for cleansing and detoxing the digestive system, and gives the smoothie a lovely, dark reddish-purple color. I will usually add a handful or so of wild greens to my smoothie after I have 100% positively identified them*. 

*Note: do not harvest or eat any wild plant unless you are 100% sure of their identification. If plant identification is of interest to you, there are many guides, books, courses, and videos to help you learn how to positively identify edible plants.

Broom and dust pan - Spring Cleaning - Gone Minimal
Broom and dust pan

When to Spring Clean

Spring cleaning can be done at any time between February and June. Optimally, it is done in the early spring to help prepare you for the coming warmth, which would be sometime between mid-February and early April.

That being said, the best time to spring clean is whenever you feel the desire to. The key is following through and acting on that desire, which can be the hardest part. This happens because we will feel the inspiration to clean and organize, but then quickly become overwhelmed by the magnitude of the task. Luckily, there are simple ways to handle this and follow through on your desire to spring clean. 

Spring cleaning is following the natural desire to ready one’s living environment for the warmer months. This entails cleaning, decluttering, and organizing the home and workspace, as well as cleansing and detoxing one’s physical body.

How to Spring Clean

There isn’t one right way or order when it comes to spring cleaning. Simply pick a room or space and get to action! Before doing so, you’ll want to figure out what you want to clean/organize by making a list. Keep this list in a place it’s easy to see and check off, such as on a whiteboard on the fridge or on your desk. 

To help keep you motivated and prepared, check out these tips on how to best start your spring cleaning process. 

Bedroom - Spring Cleaning - Gone Minimal
Bedroom

Spring Cleaning Tips

  • Start with one room at a time: This is more of a mental tip, as thinking about all that one has to do can quickly drain motivation. Just focus on one room/space at a time, complete that task, congratulate yourself, and then move on to the next. When one becomes focused on the end goal, their current tasks can become rushed and stressful, because they’re trying to hurry to complete it all. Instead, just slow it down and be present for each task. This will also help you not become overwhelmed and burnt out. 
  • Have all your cleaning supplies ready: The last thing you want to do is start in on a task only to pause to have to go get something that you need. Before beginning a project, think about all the cleaning supplies you might need and bring them with you to the space. That being said, there will be times when you don’t realize you need something specific until you are on the task. That’s fine – it’s the not being prepared at all that can fluster a situation.
  • Space it out and put it on the schedule: Spring cleaning doesn’t have to be all in one day. You can plan it out and put on the schedule what you would like to do each week/weekend. Giving yourself realistic goals to achieve will encourage you to keep going. 

If you would like some fun inspiration, this YouTuber documented her 5 days of spring cleaning. She spaced it out by doing a specific room/space for each of the days.

Spring Cleaning Checklists

I’m a huge fan of making checklists, and they help me stay focused on my tasks. The reward of crossing something off not only makes you feel proud of your accomplishment but encourages you to complete more tasks. 

Your checklist can be as detailed or as simple as you would like. Maybe you would like a refined list of just the rooms you want to clean/organize. Or, maybe you want to make a checklist for each room with specific tasks you would like to complete in that space. 

Here’s an example of a more detailed checklist: 

Clean Kitchen: 

  • Clean/polish stovetop. 
  • Clean/organize countertops. 
  • Clean sink. 
  • Reorganize Tupperware drawer. 
  • Sweep and mop floors. 
Kitchen - Spring Cleaning - Gone Minimal
Kitchen

Clean/Organize Pantry: 

  • Remove all pantry items and throw away old/expired food
  • Clean pantry shelves
  • Put back and reorganize pantry items

Here’s an example of a short and simple checklist: 

  • Clean Kitchen
  • Clean/Organize Pantry 
  • Clean Living Room 
  • Clean Bedroom 

I prefer the more detailed checklist simply because I love the satisfaction of crossing things off my list! Plus, I’m more aware of what I need to do and it helps me not forget steps in the project. 

Spring Cleaning Services

If you live a busy, hectic life, cleaning may be low on the priority list. Sure, you’re able to keep up with daily household tasks, but a deep clean? Yeah, not going to happen. 

If you relate to this, you might want to consider hiring a cleaning service. They’ll be able to refresh and deep clean your home in a day or two. It’s an expense you’ll have to consider, but it may just be worth it to give your space the cleaning it needs. 

Cleaning supplies - Spring Cleaning - Gone Minimal
Cleaning supplies

Spring Cleaning Supplies

If you’re living a minimalistic lifestyle, or aspiring to, then you’ll want to be mindful of your cleaning supplies. This includes using reusable cloths in place of paper towels, as well as non-toxic cleaning formulas that are healthy for both you and the planet. 

Cleaning Products for Spring Cleaning

My favorite cleaning supply for any room in the house is my Norwex rags. These high-quality microfiber cloths naturally remove dust, bacteria, grime, and spills on just about any surface. The best part is that all they need is water, you don’t have to use any cleaning sprays! I exclusively use these cloths in my kitchen, and they work super well. Check them out here

You’ll also want to make sure you have reusable paper towels to cut back on waste. If those aren’t your thing, then consider paper towels that are made from recycled or sustainable materials, such as bamboo or hemp. 

Lastly, you’ll want to make sure you have the right cleaning products for the extra dirty areas in the house, such as the bathroom. There are plenty of products that are eco-friendly and contain natural ingredients. There are also a number of cleaning products you can make yourself with ingredients such as apple cider vinegar, baking soda, and essential oils. A quick search on the web will grant you many recipes to choose from. 

Washcloths and scrubbers - Spring Cleaning - Gone Minimal
Washcloths and scrubbers

Organizers for Spring Cleaning

Before you begin your spring cleaning, you’ll want to consider if there are areas that need improved organization. If so, you’ll want to consider what would help make that space more organized, such as glass jars, storage bins, or containers. 

The pantry, for example, could be converted to hold a number of glass jars containing specific ingredients, such as flour, sugar, rice, and noodles. Using this method would help cut back on waste if you purchase reusable cloth bags for grocery shopping. Then, you can purchase your ingredients in the bulk section at the grocery store – having this organized system is a great way to cut back on plastic use. 

By planning ahead on what organizers you would like to use for certain areas, you’ll be much more prepared for when you start on your task. 

Spring flowers in the sunset - Spring Cleaning - Gone Minimal
Spring flowers in the sunset

Related Insights

What Is Included in Spring Cleaning?

Spring cleaning includes organizing and cleaning every room/space in your living environment. It also entails getting rid of and donating things you no longer need. 

Is Spring Cleaning Necessary?

Yes and no. Is having a clean home and detoxing necessary for a healthy, vibrant life? I believe so. Is cleaning in the spring necessary? I don’t think so, it can be whenever you feel the desire or need to do so. This often happens in the spring based on the cycle of the season and our growing energy levels, but a deep house cleaning doesn’t have to be in the spring, it can be at any time of year. The same goes for a cleanse or detox, but I would recommend doing this during the spring and summer. I believe it can be hard on one’s body to do a cleanse/detox during the winter months, simply based on the cycles of the season. 

Cleaning glove and duster - Spring Cleaning - Gone Minimal
Cleaning glove and duster

Typical Spaces People Clean In Their Home

To see if my friends and family were feeling similar desires to clean and organize, I reached out to them with a few questions. I was curious what spaces in their home they usually spring clean, and what items they most often organize, get rid of, or donate. Here’s what I discovered: 

Spaces They Clean/OrganizeTally of Family/Friends
Bedroom4
Kitchen4
Bathroom2
Living room2
Laundry room1
Car1
Wood shop1
Items Organized/Donated Most OftenTally of Family/Friends
Clothes3
Pantry2
Trinkets2
Supplement drawer1
Desktop items/paper1
Shoes1
Kid’s Toys1
Cups1
Fabric1
Tools1
Mail/reciepts1

Other Resources:

I invite you to welcome the feelings of spring and follow your energy to where it leads you. If cleaning is part of that, then I encourage you to follow through on that desire. The hardest part is just getting started – once you’re on a roll it’s much easier. Don’t forget to grab a delicious green-powered smoothie before you get going! Happy cleaning my friends!