Spring Cleaning For Messy People

Take a look around your house. In its current state, is it Pinterest worthy? Or does it look like it belongs on the cover of “Messy Monthly”? (Not a real magazine, but you get the point). Yeah, mine too. I’ll bet your house, like mine, is in need of a good spring cleaning.

I’ll admit it, I am a messy person. Despite the fact that I am a minimalist, I can also be quite messy. The truth is, I often struggle with keeping my house clean (enough). Cleaning is just not real high on my to-do list. Which is why I prefer to do my spring cleaning more than once a year.

Yep, you read that right. I actually spring clean my house multiple times a year. Why? It’s simple, this way I don’t feel (too) bad about letting the dust pile up the rest of the year.

I may be one hot mess, but this hot mess has mastered the art of Spring cleaning. And you can too.

Spring Cleaning For Messy People

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Spring Cleaning for Messy People

I’m messy AND I am a minimalist. A walking oxymoron, I know. Thankfully, though, being a minimalist prevents me from being too messy. After all, it’s hard to leave stuff lying around when you don’t own a lot, to begin with. Somehow, I still manage to leave wet towels on the bed, clean clothes piled on the dryer, multiple pairs of shoes by the door, etc. I’ve been known to go more than a month (or two) without cleaning my bathrooms. I even {gasp} regularly leave dirty dishes in the sink…overnight!

Before you contact the producers of Hoarders, you need to know that I do not live in a pigsty. I regularly wipe down high-use areas like bathroom sinks, kitchen counters, and tabletops. That being said, I live in a house with (3) boys, (1) hubby and (2) dogs. If I tried to keep my house spotless, I would probably go nuts!

If I can’t manage to keep my house clean on a daily basis, why should I even bother to attempt a spring cleaning? Won’t my house just get dirty again? Yep. That’s precisely why I spring clean more than once a year. Rather than clean my house on a daily basis, I like to let things get really dirty before I do a deep clean. By doing this, I get more “bang” for my cleaning “buck”.

If you are a fellow messy person, you may want to give my method a try.

Spring Cleaning for Messy People

Spring Cleaning: Declutter Before you Clean

As a Semi-Professional Organizer, My passion lies in decluttering. I love it so much that I’ll take decluttering and organizing over cleaning any day. If you are a messy person, I highly recommend you declutter before you even try to organize and especially before you attempt to deep clean.

Yes, decluttering can be hard, but when it comes to cleaning, having a decluttered house is totally worth it. The work you put in now to declutter your space will pay off once it’s time to begin spring cleaning. Without tons of stuff lying around, it will be a breeze to clean your home.

Having a hard time decluttering? I’ve written a few posts to help you:

Shock Treatment Declutter: A Crash Course

How to Declutter your Wardrobe

4 Simple Steps to Declutter Paper

Even if you never manage to get around to spring cleaning, the act of decluttering your home will make it look ten times cleaner. I promise!

Spring Cleaning: Rally the Troops

Don’t think for a second that I clean my house all by myself. I assure you, if I did, it would look much worse! Every person in my household does their part and pitches in. Especially when it comes to spring cleaning. We have an “all hands on deck” policy.

If you are living, breathing, and occupying space in our home, you help keep it clean. Period.

Gather your family together. Tell them you are in this together. For better or for worse… yadda yadda yadda. Offer them cash if you need to. Just make sure everyone helps out in some way. Even toddlers can go around the house with a clean rag and “dust”.

When it comes to spring cleaning, I prefer to “divide and conquer”. My husband, on the other hand, likes to have a couple of people per room. It really doesn’t matter how you divide up the chores, as long as everyone has something to do. By the way, if your kids aren’t working in the same room as you are, make sure you periodically check in on them. That way you’ll know when they’ve ditched the cleaning rag and replaced it with the Playstation controller. (Notice I said when not if.)

 Spring Cleaning for Messy People

Spring Cleaning: Gather your Supplies

Once you’ve decluttered your home and rallied the troops, the fun can begin! I mean it, this is the real fun part. Not the actual cleaning. Now it’s time to gather the supplies you’ll need in order to deep clean. Even though I don’t particularly like to clean, I love cleaning supplies! That doesn’t mean I go all crazy and buy a bunch of solutions and gadgets, though. Like everything else in my life, I like to keep my spring cleaning simple.

Here are a few things you’ll need:

  • Buckets
  • Cleaning rags (I prefer microfiber)
  • Dry cloth, old newspapers, or paper towels (for windows and glass)
  • A Mop (I have this steam mop {which I love} You just put on a washable pad, add water, turn it on and let the power of steam get your floors squeaky clean.)
  • Cleaning products (Don’t worry, I won’t berate you if you don’t use all-natural cleaning products)
  • Ladder
  • Something to dust with (This can be a cloth, feather duster, or a static duster. Bonus points if it has a long handle attached to it for those really high spots.)
  • Vacuum
  • Broom & dustpan
  • Upbeat music


Spring Cleaning: Top to Bottom & Left to Right

Here’s a trick I learned when I used to clean houses/office spaces. Can you believe I actually did this for money!? Maybe if I was getting paid now, I would clean more often. Who am I kidding? Anyway, when cleaning any room always start at the top and work your way down. Likewise, you’ll want to start to the left of the door you enter from and work clockwise around the room. Make sense? Allow me to illustrate.

Say you start in your living room. Upon entering your living room, turn to your left. Now, look up. Start cleaning. Work your way around the room until you reach the door (or entryway) again. Don’t forget to clean any ceiling fans/light fixtures in the center of the room. When you have finished with the perimeter clean the floors. Repeat this process until you run out of time, patience, or energy.

P.S. I like to clean the windows/glass either after I’ve vacuumed or swept the floors. Dust is attracted to glass surfaces, so it’s good to remove as much dust as you can before cleaning any glass surface.

Why not just jump right in and start cleaning willy-nilly? Because by cleaning the top (any area you will need a ladder to reach) first, then any wall hangings, tall shelves, lamps, tables, and so on,  and working your way down, you will not have to worry about getting dust/dirt on the surfaces you’ve already cleaned. By working clockwise from left to right, if you need to stop for lunch, you’ll be able to pick right back up where you left off. In addition, if you are forgetful like I am, you won’t have to wonder, “Did I clean that already?” You’ll know if something is to your left, it’s clean.

Spring Cleaning: Pat Yourself on the Back

If your house was really messy before you started spring cleaning, you will likely notice a huge difference when you’re done. See, this is why I let my house get super dirty before I clean it! Now you have the option to spring clean your home whenever you need to. Even if it’s the middle of winter!

Spring Cleaning: No Thank You

If for some reason, all of this spring cleaning nonsense is not for you, and you have the resources, you could always hire someone to do the dirty work for you! Did you know you can now hire someone to clean your home through Amazon? It’s true! If you sign up for Amazon Home Services through the ad below, I will earn a small commission. (Don’t worry, this will not increase your price.)

You’ll find tons more tips for cleaning & decluttering your home on my Pinterest boards.

If you are a messy person like I am, you should check this out before you even think about spring cleaning!

If you are a messy person like I am, you should check this out before you even think about spring cleaning!

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About Cheryl Lemily

A wife, mom of 3 boys & 2 dogs. A minimalist raising a minimalist(ish) family. Living a small, slow, simple life. Helping others declutter & simplify.

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