Friday, March 20th is the alleged first day of spring this year. We know you’re incredulous (we are, too), but there’s a chance that this ridiculous winter of our collective discontent might just come to an end. That said, let’s not leave anything to chance.
Spring cleaning is a time-honored ritual embraced by some and ignored by most. If you’re in the latter category, we’re asking you to make 2015 the year that you finally join in. Because here’s our theory: Just as an actor rehearses their lines until they become real, a whole city doing their spring cleaning at the same time just might make spring a reality.
We’re talking about a critical mass of spring cleaners! A whole city scrubbing, sweeping and storing might just be the key to convincing the weather gods that the time to go vernal has finally come. And as fanciful as it might seem, we’re willing to do anything that might finally dislodge this interminable winter weather and kick spring into gear.
Spring Cleaning, Step One: Get Everyone on Board
Unless you’re living solo or slightly masochistic, do not attempt spring cleaning alone. Get your roommates together and pick a date—and make attendance 100% mandatory. Put consequences in place should someone flake, and we’re talking more than just leaving them a passive aggressive Post-It note.
For instance, if someone doesn’t show, make it clear that that person will be considered a traitor to all New Yorkers and personally responsible for any inclement weather that should occur thereafter. Also, make him or her hang out in from of Bellevue hospital for a few hours wearing a sign that says “Free hugs.” And be sure to tell someone inside that there’s a suspicious person hanging around with a sign that says “Free hugs.” Or something along those lines. You get the idea—there must be consequences.
Spring Cleaning, Step Two: Get the Right Tools
Now that you have the date, be sure you’re properly equipped. Blow the dust off whatever cleaning tools you have, pull out every half-empty bottle of cleaning solution you have, and survey the scene. Think about all the cleaning that needs to be done and ask yourself, “What do I not have enough of? What do I need? What is that weird bottle with purple liquid, and how did it get here?” Because there’s always one mystery bottle.
Once you know what you’ve got, make a list of all the things you need and take a trip to Duane Reade. And don’t skimp. You’re going into battle here—be sure to bring the right weapons.
Spring Cleaning, Step Three: Get Prepped
By getting prepped, we mean decluttering. Because you can’t clean a surface covered in random papers, toys, loose change, take-out boxes and dirty socks. Honestly, this is the step that trips so many people up because it’s the one that requires thought and may be a bit emotionally charged.
So, over the next few days, here’s what you need to do: Grab three boxes and go room by room, starting with the room in which you spend the most time. Throw away anything that is obviously trash. Then pick up each item that is contributing to the clutter—think about it, appreciate it, and then separate into Keep, Store, Donate.
Continue sorting until the space is sufficiently de-cluttered to do a thorough cleaning. You’ll feel so much better knowing that the hardest part is behind you. And be sure to warn your roommates that anyone who doesn’t do the same will find their bed covered in dirty socks and take-out boxes by the end of the day.
Once you’ve donated the things in your donate box and filled the box to be put in your storage unit, you’re ready to clean! In our next post, we’ll share some tips and tricks on how to make your spring cleaning count. Stay tuned… and if you have have any tricks of your own you’d like to share, please send them our way.