Spring. The weather gets nicer, birds start chirping, the flowers start to grow, and the trees begin to turn green again. Spring is a time for new beginnings. As much as spring is a signal for things to change in nature, it can also be a signal for us to make some changes as well. One way we can make change, spring cleaning.
The idea of spring cleaning sounds great, a nice clean, organized space for us. Our living space is supposed to be a place where we feel comfortable, a place of relaxation. However, most people will admit that their home is not as clean and organized as they would like. Nearly 80% of people find that dealing with clutter and messes in their home is stressful. That stress can lead to increased feelings of anxiety and depression. But it can also feel overwhelming to tackle the seemingly never ending to do list that often comes with spring cleaning.
Here are some tips to help you hop on that spring cleaning train and make the process seem more manageable.
- Take it 1 room at a time. Think about your kitchen for a moment. Is there a junk drawer that is bursting with papers and random items? Clean through that. How about the last time you deep cleaned your fridge, or cabinets? By taking things one room at a time, it allows you to focus on the task at hand.
- Prioritize your list. It’s easy to look around and make a long list of things to do. For spring cleaning, try to make a list of the things that you don’t do as often or don’t really think about, such as washing all your curtains, or moving furniture to vacuum under and behind it.
- If you can’t remember the last time you used something, its probably safe to get rid of it. We often look at things with the mindset of, “maybe in the future.” Maybe it’s a coat that you haven’t worn in years, and you keep it because one day you might wear it. Or maybe it’s a tool in the garage that you keep even though you have two more just in case you lose the other ones. This can eliminate the unnecessary clutter from your space and relieve stress and other mental health symptoms.
It is important to recognize how external factors in our environment can impact our mental health and what we can do about them. By taking back control of your living space through spring cleaning, it can help shake those winter blues away and get you ready for the spring and summer months ahead.
If you are feeling overwhelmed this spring, we at Spectrum Health and Human Services can help you regain that sense of control in your life and keep you moving forward. Happy Spring!
Ashley Pajor, LMHC