Greetings and salutations, blog readers!
Today I am talking all about “purging” your home, or, as some people may call it, deep cleaning your home. This is a perfect topic, and thing to do, on a Sunday, hence why it makes our Sunday Prep Blog series.
I personally like to look at it as purging. Purging anything bad, unwanted, unneeded, anything that creates problems, anything that makes me actively unhappy.
It isn’t some “does it spark joy?” thing, apologies and all due respect to Marie Kondo, but my process is more like a “does this make me miserable?” thing.
And if it does?
Out it goes.
Because life is short, and the things that make us miserable make it seem longer in the worst ways and shorter in depressing ways.
No one wants our already short existence to be full of things that piss us off.
No one wants that short existence to feel long as hell, only because time drags to a slow halt when you are miserable.
No, I would rather a life that is fast, as all life seems to fly by too fast, but one that flies by because you are having a wonderful time.
Seems a better way to spend your limited time on this earth.
So, what is a purge in your home?
For me, in a small, inner city apartment, it doesn’t take long to go through the entire space…and it doesn’t take long for small problems to turn into giant messes that take ages to sort out.
I find that regularly purging helps me stay on top of it.
I am actually way overdue for my next big purge, but with everything going on in my life right now, I have been pretty behind on actually doing it.
In the bedroom, as frequent readers may recall, I have been purging things that I know longer need or have reason to keep. I am either selling these things, like gently used clothing and shoes on Poshmark, or I am tossing (recycling where applicable) the things, that can’t be given away to friends or family.
I tend to try and find the best new method to purge, but generally, it depends on my mood, how much time I have and the overall task I am working on.
You see, I tend to purge when I am already going to set about cleaning an area, because to me the best way to purge is to make sure everything in an area has a place. Once everything has a place, you beat back clutter, in theory, which reduces the need to purge as often, or as intensely.
The how much time I have, and task I am working on, tend to go hand in hand, and will also influence how I purge.
Normally, I try to find something I like to listen to, which will normally be something I have been binging, like The Office or Anna and the Apocalypse, or even cleaning videos on YouTube, like the ones Melissa Maker does.
To save on time and energy, I try to find and gather my supplies before beginning, so I don’t have to keep pausing in the middle of my purging. Generally having a pair of gloves on helps me, as I am allergic to dust and also, you never know what you may find when cleaning…and it’s also better for your skin. Also, for an added help to your skin, feel free to toss some lotion on before putting gloves on, if you have gloves that won’t slide all around. I use some nice little gloves I was able to buy on amazon, but I am sure ones like them are available online. Whatever kind of glove you like, my allergic preference is non latex, and preferably ones that go up onto your forearms a bit, so you can get into messes and keep your skin protected.
I also gather micro fiber cloths, paper towels, multi purpose cleaner, trash bags, and a basket for anything I need to put elsewhere. If I don’t grab a basket, it turns into a big pile.
If the area I am cleaning has any special requirements, like other cleaners, special brushes, or if it involves tools, I grab these as well, and some water to stay hydrated. My goal is to have everything I need, so I can lock in and get the purging done. I find it is best to get it done as fast as possible, without distractions, to have a better results.
Then, I make sure my hair is pinned back, normally a bun and a headband, sometimes a headscarf or a bandanna, and get to work.
I work left to right, top to bottom, to make sure I hit every spot in my goals. I will remove everything from the area I am working on, and will clean each item, and each surface. While I clean each item, I sort it, either putting it in the basket to be put in its proper place in the home, later.
If it is trash, I toss it in the bag. If it is for donation or sale, it also goes in the basket. I goal here is to make it easy. Trash or not. Anything that belongs back in the area it came from, after being cleaned and tended to in whatever fashion was necessary, will go back to the area, once the surfaces are clean and there is a clean spot available.
Once I finish purging that area, I move to the right, and then work my way down, tossing what should be tossed, cleaning and tending to what needs it, and putting the rest of the mess, the stuff that is basically clutter, in the basket. Whether this item belongs elsewhere in the home, needs to be sold, or recycled, or given away, it goes in the basket, and I can get to it later.
This method also works for quick cleans, but I like it for deep ones too.
I find that when I start putting things away, I end up cleaning more areas, and end up with a deeply cleaned apartment fast.
Once I finish that area, I will give it another look over, make sure any clutter is gone and all messes are handled, and then I will sweep and mop the floor, to get any dust or mess that was created in the purge. The trash goes out, and the basket and I go around the apartment, sorting each item where it belongs.
I try to work in a circle, to make the best use of my time and energy, but it is also a fairly small space, and even if I don’t, it goes by fast.
If I find more problem areas that I can quickly tackle, depending on my time, I go ahead and do this, since my gloves are out, my hair is up, and I am already in cleaning and purging mode.
Once it comes time to toss, recycle, or donate my items, I try really hard to not be sentimental, and generally just say, “Okay but does keeping it, maintaining it, tending to it, storing it, CLEANING IT, does any of this make you miserable, or contribute in a major way to any stress, irritation, or frustration, on my life?”
If it gives me any trouble, and isn’t essential, I toss it, reycle it, or donate it. Day to day stress, or, as I call it, background radiation stress, can kill us slowly, and painfully. No thank you.
If I want to keep it, even if it is hard to find a place for, I find a temporary place for it, and add that area to my next purge list. I don’t want to forge negative thoughts when it comes to purging, or else I won’t do it as often.
I eventually either find a place for it, or realize I don’t actually need it, without getting unnecessarily rough with myself. Everything has a place, and somethings don’t spark joy but you need to keep…so toss the stuff that makes you miserable so you can have more room for things that maybe could spark joy, or at least help make life a bit easier.
If I have all day to do this, or even a couple of days, I like to slowly move through my whole apartment, purging things…but I haven’t had that time in a while.
I am planning on trying to do a small purge and clean tomorrow, or today when this Blog goes live, and I am hoping to get a small area in the kitchen purged, as well as my former desk in the living room, purging old makeup from my container, cleaning my brushes, and moving any supplies I need for my work area into my room. I am also hoping to clean up a bit more in this room, and maybe purge a few more things, but, it is important to have realistic expectations, and the simple fact of the matter is this weekend is already getting away from me, and I have a giant list of things to do.
Sometimes, you can’t burn yourself out, because you will end up regretting purging, and doing all that productive good stuff, because what is it all worth if you are exhausted and miserable? It is also important to remember that something purging, and getting rid of things you once loved, can be hard, even exhausting, separate from the extra labor of what you are doing, so don’t try to do everything at once.
If you can, get some help. I personally don’t like purging with others, choosing to just set things aside for them if they need to weigh in, because I like to talk to myself and sometimes vlog.
However you do it, however, make sure you take the time to appreciate the great work you are doing, so you can better appreciate it later. The whole point to doing this is to enjoy a nice space and get rid of things you don’t like or that actively make you miserable, so you can have access to the things you do love.
I hope this has been helpful!
Thanks for reading.