Lifestyle

My Chaotic Guide to Fall Cleaning

todayOctober 18, 2021 6

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By Lea Mercado
Web Content Assistant Manager

Everyone has heard of spring cleaning. It’s the time of year everyone decides to clear out closets, pack away winter clothes and create space for all the rest of the year has to offer. I, on the other hand, prefer to do my deep cleaning as we transition into fall. And trust me, it’s not nearly as aesthetic as TikTok makes it seem.

I’ve always strived to be intentional about the possessions that I keep, primarily due to the rise of minimalism while I was in high school. Around that time, I had also been introduced to Marie Kondo. The author of “The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up,” and creator of the KonMari Method. 

The KonMari Method captured millions, and Netflix eventually produced a show featuring Kondo titled “Sparking Joy,” which shows Kondo traveling to different houses to teach people how to tidy up their home and, eventually, their lives. 

The method was created to help people achieve a more mindful attitude towards their possessions and environment. Essentially, it consists of dividing possessions into different categories and throwing away anything that doesn’t “spark joy.”

While I was intrigued by the method and used it for some time before living on my own, once I moved out, it became less attainable.

The lines between what sparked joy and what was essential began to blur.

I mean, does a whisk bring me joy? Not quite, maybe if it was an absurdly small whisk, but not a regular whisk. Does that mean I should get rid of it? No, I need it. That dilemma is what inspired me to develop my own method of fall cleaning.

Before I begin my process of decluttering, setting the energy is crucial. I did this in honor of the spooky season by lighting a fall candle and listening to Halloween-themed true crime podcasts. The true crime podcasts are optional for the method, though the candle is not.

After I am fully convinced the weather is not over 85º outside in Texas, it is time to begin.

I always like to sort through my clothing first. Partially because drawers and closets often get rummaged through every day, but I also like to use my starting enthusiasm to motivate myself while trying on clothes to decide whether or not to donate. I typically dump all of my clothing on the floor and then separate them into tops, bottoms, and season piles.

This process looks different for everyone, though. Not everyone likes to sort or even dump all their clothes out at once. So, the main question to keep in mind when sorting through clothing is, “do I feel good in this?” If not, it might be time to part ways.

After the clothing is sorted, I begin on my desk drawers, or rather, junk drawers. I tend to toss any small random object that I encounter into my desk drawers resulting in a collection of loose thumbtacks, rocks I picked up and became emotionally invested in and other miscellaneous things I had forgotten I own. This is where I stray from typical cleaning methods the most.

While most tidiness gurus will suggest ridding your home of anything that is not of use or sparks joy, I argue that useless objects do have a place within the home. In my opinion, small useless objects make a home. So, yes, I will be keeping the small pickle pendant my nephew gifted me at Christmas. In the spirit of leniency, I suggest that if you own something that seems useless yet brings amusement to you, instead of tossing it, make a home for it instead.

Lastly, I think it is essential to celebrate your new space with a small change of some sort. Whether it’s a new lamp or fall decorations, it’s always important to display something big to reflect the small changes. This year, I decided to celebrate my new space with new bedding for the cold weather to come.

After all, a cleaning day is hardly ever complete without a $100 Target run.

Featured Image by Lea Mercado

Written by: allisonschroeder13

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