Spring Cleaning

Spring Cleaning by Laura Stack #productivity

Spring is the perfect time to clean up the clutter and dust that accumulates over winter and set yourself up for a productive remainder of the year! Tackle your project with the following three-step formula:
1. Get ready… Before you begin cleaning, get ready to tackle the clutter. Prepare for a spring cleaning spree.

  • Start by labeling five large boxes: Put Away, Give Away, Store Away, Shred, and Trash. Select an area, such as a drawer, desk or room to organize first.
  • Use a timer. Don’t view spring cleaning as an all-day task! Take an hour here and there to get the job done over several weekends. When you’re ready to begin, set your timer for 50 minutes. When it buzzes, use the last ten minutes of your organization session to handle the boxes: put things away, place charity items in the car, put items in storage, shred sensitive documents and toss out the trash.
  • Focus. Concentrate on organizing one area at a time. If you don’t focus, you’ll end up with multiple “half-organized” areas.

2. Get Set…Set a plan in place to stay productive as you spring clean all year long.

  • Innovative storage. Anything that goes together should be stored together. Find attractive boxes, baskets, toolboxes and totes to organize common items such as batteries, make-up, tools, cleaning supplies or gift-wrap. Use duffel bags to store sports equipment—one sport per bag per person.
  • One in, one out. As you group similar items together, avoid keeping too many of the same items. Do you really need five spatulas or dozens of sweaters? The next time you think about purchasing something you already own, give serious thought as to what are willing to give up.

3. Go…! Your clothing is put away and sports equipment is tidy. Now that you have a good idea what you need to get rid of, let go of all the clutter!

  • Shred sensitive documents. Paper piles can stack up fast around the house, so shred sensitive documents with a reliable Fellowes shredder. For large shredding jobs, the Fellowes 79Ci is the ultimate shredding machine. With its Patented 100% Jam Proof technology and ability to cross-cut up to 16 sheets at once, your paper piles will disappear in no time! Or try Fellowes P-12C for smaller, day-to-day shredding jobs.
  • Tag items. If you’re still having a hard time parting with certain things such as clothing or kitchen gadgets, place a tag on each item with the date one year from now. If you use the item, take the tag off. When that date arrives, anything that still has a tag goes.
  • Donate. For items you want to get rid of that are still in good condition, consider donating to charity. While it can be tough for your little one to donate toys or for your husband to let go of his beloved CD collection, they’ll feel good knowing someone will benefit from these items.

With the Ready…Set…Go formula, spring cleaning can be easy! Use this three-step plan to get moving on a cleaner, more organized life.

© 2015 Laura Stack. Note: Laura Stack is a paid contributor to Fellowes.



  1. Great tips, Laura! I like the idea of the 50-minute sessions. I tend to do my de-cluttering in one go but it’s always exhausting.

  2. Carolyn W. says:

    Thank you for the great tips Laura! You described my efforts ending with the ‘half organized’ spaces – to a “T” – and it is frustrating! I will give your method a go. 🙂

  3. Caroline Hardenbergh says:

    Regarding CDs – let your family know that they can store ALL their music on Google Play, where they can access their music on their phone, tablet, laptop, computer, and TVs with wireless and/or internet access – they’re only losing the physical package, not the music!

    Also, Gamestop will take trade-ins for video games, so when they conquer all the levels, they can get a discount on a new adventure!

    • My boys love Gamestop! Always a great way to trade in games you no longer play and get something new! Great tip on CDs—maybe they should have a ceremony where they “let go” all the CDs and give them to Goodwill. 🙂

  4. Thanks for sharing this advice when it comes to spring cleaning! I agree that you can end up with a lot of trash, especially if you haven’t cleaned heavily in awhile. In fact, I think it is good to call a trash collection service to see if they will be willing to pick up your trash. You will probably end up with more trash than you can handle, so it’s good to get it out of the way!