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Spring is one of the best parts of the year. Sure, the new year is when people think about new beginnings. But spring is the ACTUAL season for new beginnings where flowers are blooming, and we come out of hibernation to take over the world.
It’s the perfect time to reassess, clean house, and make sure you’re on track to meet your goals for the year. To get your spring and summer started with a bang, feast your eyes on this epic spring cleaning checklist!
Managing money can be a complete drag—I hear you—but managing your money is how you get to “do more” things like paying off debt, traveling, investing, or doing whatever you feel like whenever you feel like. Here are things to add to your spring cleaning checklist:
1. Start a budget (even if you hate budgeting). Plot twist—It’s my belief that most people hate budgeting. That doesn’t mean you’re doomed to fail with money. Budgeting is simply having a plan for the money you earn. It doesn’t have to be fancy. You can write this plan down on a piece of paper or in a day planner. Need help creating your budget? Grab The 60-Minute Money Plan.
2. Check in on your spending habits. You can spend quite a bit on food during cold months because you’re in the house most of the time. Run through your bank and credit card statements to see how often you’ve been grocery shopping and eating out. Commit to cutting back on your shopping trips as much as you can. Need to learn how to make a simple budget? I can show you how even if you HATE budgeting.
3. Move your savings. Has this every happened to you? You’re in the checkout line. As the cashier is ringing up items, you notice that the balance is starting to look a bit more than what’s in your bank account. You quickly pull out your phone and try to transfer money from your savings into checking before it’s time to pay the bill. Sound familiar?
Savings that is attached to your checking account is very easy to spend so move some of your savings somewhere else. There are plenty of online bank accounts that you can open up for savings goals. Set up an automatic withdrawal from your checking to this brand new savings account. Learn how to shop for savings accounts here.
4. Comparison shop. At least once per year you should shop for better rates on stuff like cable, internet, wireless, insurance, and other services. Spring is a good time to get this done. Check out what’s happening in the market and ask your current providers for specials or discounts. If they can’t offer specials, consider moving companies for some savings.
5. Think about reorganizing your debt. Paying just the minimum on your debt isn’t going to make it go away any time soon. Think about coming up with a new strategy to devote more money to debt or reorganizing things for savings.
For example, with credit card debt, you could consider using a balance transfer card. A balance transfer card is one offering an introductory 0% interest rate for a limited amount of time. Transferring your balance to a new card with this deal could help you avoid interest so you can pay off debt faster.
Another option to consider is a debt consolidation with a personal loan to stabilize your payments. Credit card interest rates are usually variable (which means they can change) while personal loans can have fixed and more competitive rates.
Clothing and Closets Checklist
Clothes, clothes, clothes. Love ’em but they take up a lot of space. Here are things to add to your checklist to organize your clothes and closets.
6. Pack away winter clothes. Time to pack away your cold weather clothes to make way for your warmer weather clothes. Dry clean sweaters and wash your clothes before packing them into your storage containers. Put some lavender or dryer sheets in your storage containers to keep the clothes fresh.
7. Pull out spring and summer stuff. Bring out your spring and summer clothes. Put them neatly into your closet and drawers.
8. Donate what you no longer need. Make some decisions about what you no longer need from both your winter and summer clothes. Put them in bags do donate and sell. Don’t let these bags sit in the garage collecting dust! Write a date down in your calendar when you’ll take the clothes to the donation bin or you’ll sell the clothes online (ThredUp, Ebay, Poshmark, etc.) or in person at a thrift shop.
9. Switch out shoes and organize. Shoes also need some attention. Pull out your winter boots and shoes and pack them away for next year. Pull out your spring and summer flats, sandals, and sneakers. Check out some affordable shoe organizers here. Check out some great closet organization ideas here.
Kitchen and Bathrooms Checklist
Now we’re moving on to the nitty gritty. (Cue the eery music.) The kitchen and bathrooms. *Dun, dun, DUNNNN* I’m not sure about you, but these two areas are my least favorite areas of the house to clean. Here are a few hacks to help you tackle the task:
10. Grab the right tools for tubs and tiles. Different types of tubs require different cleaning solutions and brushes. Getting the wrong brush can actually do more harm than good to your shower. Here’s a good article on the different types of cleaning solutions you should use on different tubs. Here’s another article on the best brushes around.
11. Give your appliances a bit of love. Cleaning appliances can also be the bane of your existence, but it has to get done. Homemade cleaning hacks can help you clean tough to clean areas like your oven. There’s even a way to clean your stove burners without scrubbing. And a way to steam clean your microwave.
General Organization and Tidying Up Checklist
Marie Kondo’s show Tidying Up on Netflix has us all wanting to be more intentional about the stuff we keep. Spring is a great time to put some ideas into action.
12. Take in inventory of storage. Do you need all of the stuff in your garage, attic, or basement? Pull out your stuff. Make a keep pile, make a donate pile, and make a sell pile. Don’t overwhelm yourself either. Try to tackle different areas of your house on different weekends.
13. Clean out your junk drawer. We all have that drawer where we toss odds and ends haphazardly because it’s easier than actually finding a place for them. Go through your drawers. Throw out stuff you don’t need and employ some drawer organization tactics.
14. Touch up your floors. Everything else is getting the special treatment. Your floors need some treatment, too! Steam the carpets and polish the floors. It can be back breaking work so think about hiring a professional cleaner to do it. It’s a luxury that could be worth every penny. There’s also the floorboards. Don’t forget the floorboards. They can get dusty and grimey.
Career + Business
Spring and summer means vacations and fun. But it’s also a good time to give your career and business a little bit of attention.
15. Refresh your resume. If you haven’t updated your resume in a while, add any new jobs and responsibilities you’ve taken on. Also, refresh your resume on platforms like LinkedIn, Monster, and CareerBuilder.
16. Catch up with contacts. If you’re thinking about searching for a new job, update your network to let them know that type of job you’re looking for.
17. Think of a summer hustle. Doing a bit of extra work on the side is a great way to stack more money for the activities that you want to do this spring and summer. Think about how you can turn your hobby or skill into a hustle. If you run a blog, think about how you can get more traffic. I can show you how I get traffic with Pinterest here.
Your home and finances aren’t the only things that need tidying up. Much of our lives happen online and what we expose our brains to also needs to be audited.
17. Unfriend and unfollow. Unfriend and unfollow people who bother you on social media. Block profiles if you have to. Remove people or profiles that make you feel negative or unhappy.
18. Deactivate. You could even go on a social media break and deactivate from your accounts altogether. Only stick to the social media accounts that you truly get value from.
19. Clean up your old posts. We all have the super embarrassing photos perhaps from high school or a long night out of drinking. Untag yourself or ask the person who posted the photo to delete it. Also, look into the past to delete comments and posts you made that you no longer want on your profile.
20. Sign up for time management systems that limit websites. There are cool apps and websites now that will not allow you to visit certain sites at certain times per day. This can help you manage your access to social media and news sites that distract you. The iPhone has the Screen Time feature within the Settings menu that helps you set time limits on apps. There’s also StayFocusd and Freedom.
Diet and Fitness Checklist
Next up is health and wellness. Want to get trim for summer? Now is the perfect time to start cleaning up what you’re putting in your mouth and to start working on your fitness plan.
21. Put together your eating clean plan. Clean eating is one way to improve your diet. The clean eating rules are pretty basic. You cut out processed foods for whole foods and high quality proteins. This may be something you want to integrate into your diet slowly. Sudden changes are not likely to be sustainable. However, clean eating can be good for your overall health and waist line.
22. Come up with a meal prep calendar. Meal prepping is a good way to start integrating new foods into your diet. It can even help you save money on food. Meal prepping is when you create all of your foods for the week (usually on a Saturday or Sunday) that you’ll eat for the rest of the week. The benefit of this is that you have a full week of healthy meals so you won’t be enticed to stop off and grab fast food when you’re in a rush.
23. Slowly integrate fitness into your training. Walk before you start running, literally. Start going on walks now that the weather is getting warmer. Commit to walking a half hour or an hour a day. If you have a decent level of fitness, HIIT workouts you can do at home can help you start shedding some fat. Make a schedule for your fitness regiment. (Always consult with a doctor before trying something new, especially if you have a health condition.)
Summer Planning Checklist
Last, but certainly not least, time to start planning out activities for the spring and summer. You don’t want the time to pass you by! Plus, early planning can help you find the best deals on stuff like flights, hotels, and other activities.
24. Make a list of who you want to see. Planning to visit family or friends over the next few months? List out each person that you want to visit when the weather is nice.
25. Make a list of where you want to go. Want to go on a solo vacation or maybe the Golden Gate bridge? Want to swim with dolphins? List out each activity that you want to do and each place you want to see.
26. Make a list of what you want to accomplish. What goals do you have for the spring and summer ends? Do you want to go on dates with new and exciting men? Do you want to plant a garden? Write down everything you want to do in a planner.
We made it through the checklist!
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