We all love spring.

After months of having to spend time inside, spring brings the sun back. After months of looking at bare trees and soggy grass, greenery and flowers emerge again, giving people hope for the warm months ahead.

Some people enter into spring with vigor, cleaning their homes from top to bottom so that their space inside can reflect the newness that is happening outdoors.

Yet, many people dread this time. In fact, a recent survey from SpareFoot revealed that 54% of Americans dread spring cleaning—in fact, they dread spring cleaning even more than they dread doing their taxes!

Here’s some good news: spring cleaning doesn’t have to be painful. Need a little spring cleaning motivation? Use these shortcuts and motivational nuggets to make your cleaning chores quick, easy, and maybe even fun:

5 surefire cures for the spring cleaning blues

Declutter. Declutter. Declutter.

Decluttering is the single most effective thing that you can do to ensure that your house stays looking better longer. The more items that your home has, the more items that you have to clean.

Start small. Try finding just ten things in each room in your home that you can do without and put them in a garbage bag. Make sure that the garbage bag gets out to your car right away so that you can drop it at a donation site as soon as possible. Otherwise it’s just another bag of stuff sitting around!

It can be hard to get started decluttering, but once you start, it can become addictive. The shift in energy of a room after a good decluttering session motivates many people to do more. If you are finding difficult to get started, just clear your mind and picture walking through your home and it being free of clutter. Imagine your countertops are clear and the corners are free of piles of random stuff. Having this end goal in mind before you begin can be a great motivator.

opened window to the summer garden in the village

Air It Out

Did you know that the air inside our homes can be just as polluted as the air outside?

According to the Environmental Protection Agency, your home’s indoor air can be polluted by things such as lead, formaldehyde and dust mites. They recommend to open up windows frequently to let these chemicals out. If you have a family member that is sensitive to outdoor environmental materials like pollen, consider using an indoor air filtering device to keep things fresh.

With your windows open, turn on your ceiling fans to draw in fresh air from outside. But don’t forget to dust the blades first!

Enlist Help

Usually a home doesn’t get messy on it’s own, so cleaning up should be a joint effort too. SpareFoot’s survey reports that 73 percent of parents say their children help with spring cleaning.

Kids not enthusiastic about cleaning? Find ways to make cleaning fun. Adding music or making it a game can help make clean up a less daunting task.

Still no luck? Offer the kids a special reward when everything is over. Going to get ice cream together or visiting a local park can be great ways to show appreciation for a job well done. You can also let them know that getting the home clean now will make it summer-ready, so that their friends can come over more when school is out.

Low section of man cleaning hardwood floor with vacuum cleaner

Choose Just One Room

One reason that so many people dread spring cleaning because the idea seems overwhelming. 36 percent of Americans will prioritize cleaning the kitchen this spring and 35 percent will prioritize cleaning their bedroom, according to SpareFoot’s survey,

If the thought of cleaning your whole house from top to bottom seems to be too much, just focus on one space. Set aside a couple of hours, eliminate outside distractions and get it done. Cleaning and organizing a small space like the bedroom closet or the pantry can be something that doesn’t take a lot of time, but has a big impact on your home.

And don’t worry even if you only get to one thing, – you have four other seasons to address the rest of the house.

Create A Cleaning Schedule for the Year

One reason that so many people dread spring cleaning because the idea seems overwhelming. 36 percent of Americans will prioritize cleaning the kitchen this spring and 35 percent will prioritize cleaning their bedroom, according to SpareFoot’s survey.

If the thought of cleaning your whole house from top to bottom seems to be too much, just focus on one space. Set aside a couple of hours, eliminate outside distractions and get it done. Cleaning and organizing a small space like the bedroom closet or the pantry can be something that doesn’t take a lot of time, but has a big impact on your home.

Once you are done with one room, you might find that you are ready to move on to the next one. Setting realistic goals will keep you from being overwhelmed. When you can achieve your goals, you are more likely to continue moving forward.

Go Natural

You might be avoiding spring cleaning because you can’t stand breathing the fumes from toxic cleaners, or having them wreak havoc on your skin. Now is the time to reassess the cleaning products you use around the home. It turns out that you can ditch the majority of commercial cleaning supplies and instead make your own cleaning spray with just vinegar, water, and some essential oils. Combine with baking soda and a little old-fashioned elbow grease, and you will be amazed how clean your surfaces can get without the harmful effects.

Remember It’s Good For Your Health

It might not have occurred to you, but spring cleaning is actually an amazing source of exercise. While you are mopping your tile floors and washing windows, you will burn calories at the same time. It is a win-win! Not to mention that studies have shown that having a clean kitchen actually encourages you to make healthier eating choices.

Create A Cleaning Schedule for the Year

Anything is doable if you break it down into small, manageable steps.

Make a list of all the tasks that are important in your deep cleaning, then assign a few to each month. Be sure that you’re addressing each task often enough (some will have to be scheduled quarterly or bi-monthly) and, most importantly, get it in writing. You can then transfer these tasks to your calendar or planner so that you don’t forget. This way you will have much less to do for next year’s spring cleaning!

Even though it is disliked by many, spring cleaning doesn’t have to be the dreaded annual tradition many make it out to be. Like so many things in our lives, there is no “one size fits all.” In order to make something work for you and your household, it’s important that you look at the uniqueness of your situation and choose to do only what works for you.

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Stacy Erickson