The new year means new goals. People will be working to reinvent themselves and set new goals that they’ll achieve by the end of December. However, many people don’t think about cleaning and decluttering as a goal for the new year to set them on the right track for the 12 months that follow. Instead of spring cleaning, your household should consider a massive cleaning at the start of the year. It’s one of the best ways to start it off on the right foot for several reasons.
1. It’s Superstition
While superstition and tradition alone aren’t great reasons for doing things, there’s a reason that many people choose to declutter during the new year rather than the spring. The idea that you should clean at the beginning of the year has the basis that you ensure the old year is out with your old objects, so you go into the new year with great expectations and none of the baggage from your past objects.
In truth, this practice may have no real effect on you. Still, it would be nice to know that you did your major cleaning at the beginning of the year so you can spend more time outside once spring rolls around. If you like to adhere to the idea that the new year is entirely new, then cleaning at the beginning of the year is probably right for you.
2. Freeze Out
Not everyone appreciates the idea of a freeze-out, but if you feel like the air in your environment is still and stale, you could benefit from cleaning everything and freezing out what remains. Tell everyone in your household to bundle up for the next hour, then leave all the doors and windows open. Though the air will be cold, it will get fresh air in your home and might make you feel healthier overall. It could be a nice way to end your new year cleaning routine. However, if you don’t like being cold, it might not be the method for you.
3. Might Improve Mental Health
Cleaning is just one of the many ways to pick up your mood. When you have depression, especially seasonal affective disorder, it might be hard to pick yourself up in winter and start a cleaning project. Still, you should try to motivate yourself — it might pay off for you in the long run. Decluttering can decrease some of your stress and make you feel more at ease in your own home, where you should feel most comfortable. Once your environment is neat and tidy, you’ll likely get a mood boost and have a clean space to start off your year right.
4. Item Donation
Winter always brings needs, and just because the new year starts in January doesn’t mean that the coldest months have passed yet. By decluttering at the beginning of the year, you may find items to donate that families could use. An old winter coat your child has outgrown could help keep another child warm through the coldest months. In addition to several of the other benefits you receive by cleaning at the start of the year, you can know that your items are off to help others or support a good cause.
5. Know What You Have
When you go through your home decluttering, you’ll start to realize what all you have and how much you can hold in your home. Cleaning at the beginning of the new year can help you purge your home of items you no longer need year-round.
You can choose to store the items you need seasonally in a protected storage unit, then get rid of everything that you can’t see yourself using again or is in bad shape. Taking inventory of what you have can help you decide what to buy in the future, potentially helping you stay on your budget in the new year.
6. Get Active
Cleaning is inherently an active activity. The holidays might be busy, but they take up people’s time and leave little room for physical activity. If one of your goals is to get moving more in the new year, starting a cleaning routine at the beginning of January can help you slide into that routine. Since the long winter was a time for relaxation, having a major cleaning episode at the start of the year can help you jump into a new habit of exercise — or at least getting your body moving more.
7. Removes Allergens
When many people choose to do spring cleaning, they do it to remove allergens from their homes, so members of their households don’t suffer. Nearly half of all adults in the United States have seasonal allergies, meaning that they might be down and out when spring rolls around, leaving them unable to clean and declutter. If you clean ahead of springtime, you’ll eliminate certain allergens while anticipating others.
8. Prevent Illnesses
When you undertake a massive cleaning, you’ll have to check crevices you may not check regularly. Cleaning out your fridge is one way to prepare for the new year. You may have to get the things that have been shoved to the back to make room for several holiday dishes. Cleaning out your fridge thoroughly may help you tackle grime and mold that have grown and will make your family sick. Tackle the problem areas of your home to ensure that your household stays illness-free.
Plan Your Cleaning Well
Whether you choose to clean in the new year or during spring is up to you, as both provide your household with ample benefits. Still, undergoing a deep cleaning at the beginning of the year can help you set the stage for how the rest of the year will go. You can set yourself up for success in January by accomplishing a whole-home clean in the first month of the year and accomplishing one of your many goals. Work on cleaning your home at the beginning of the year, and you won’t have to worry about decluttering in the other months.