If you can dedicate some time to cleaning, the final result of a decluttering session will be ten times more satisfying. Decluttering uncovers a lot of stuff you probably weren’t expecting: papers and old pens that have fallen behind cabinets, glitter from childrens craft projects, and cobwebs – lots of cobwebs.
Spiders, like any bugs, love those cosy heaps of stuff we make. They make a happy, peaceful living in those little nooks and crannies. Don’t be too hard on spiders; they’re very good at keeping your house free of other bugs that no-one wants.
But it’s still your space, not theirs, so they have to accept a little bit of upheaval now and again. Don’t feel bad about ‘evicting’ your spiders; they’re very resourceful, and soon find somewhere else to go.
You might find the expression ‘cleaning the house’ overwhelming – with good reason! Houses are big (even the small ones), and contain a lot of stuff. The thought of cleaning your entire house, flat or apartment, in one go, might prevent anyone from ever getting started.
If that’s the case, break the job into small bits. Ask yourself ‘how long can I keep going on a physical task before I get tired?’
Let’s say you can do fifteen minutes, before you need to stop. Now ask yourself ‘what little cleaning job can I do in that time?’ Can you… clean the kitchen sink? vacuum the lounge carpet? wash a few windows inside? Just do one task and see how long it takes you. If you then feel you can do another, great, but stop if you need to. You’ve still achieved your target task within a target timeframe. You have achieved your objective. Well done; reward yourself for that.
We haven’t really talked about it, so at the risk of sounding reckless, I’m introducing a new ‘category’ to my blog posts. Cleaning is the friendly relative of organising and decluttering. You don’t have to do it, but while you’re in the process of moving your stuff around into a solution that suits you better, it is worth doing a bit of cleaning.
It really is ‘just a bit’, too. We’re talking about stuff that’s been sitting around for a while, it’s going to pick up some dust – but usually it isn’t half as bad as you thought it would be, and pretty easy to get back to where you want it, i.e. nice and clean again.
Clutter tends to build up over time, so it gathers dust like anything else. But a quick wipe over with a damp cloth could be all it takes to fix the problem. We’ll be looking at a few examples of light cleaning tasks and useful ideas over the next few days, so stay tuned for updates.