“Spring is in the air” – or at least it was when I started writing this post… With the official change of season in March, people living in the Northern Hemisphere are eagerly awaiting spring. Personally, I’ve been ready for spring since the day after Christmas, but that’s another story. There’s something truly special about spring, a feeling I have only come to appreciate since I returned to Switzerland after living in sunnier and warmer parts of the world for many years. The word in itself conjures up a rush of excitement and a sense of anticipation, that you will only know, when you have experienced winter. Spring is about rejuvenation and about starting afresh. The perfect time for some spring cleaning or even a home detox.
Spring-cleaning is a long-standing tradition for many cultures around the globe. Some researchers believe it is linked to the Persian New Year, others claim it is an ancient Jewish tradition related to Passover. Also the Catholic Church traditionally cleans the altar before Good Friday. Historically there are also practical reasons that date back to the 18th and 19th century when homes used to be heated with coal and therefore covered in grime after winter. Whatever the origin may be, spring-cleaning is a tradition that’s probably here to stay. But why not take this year’s spring-cleaning up a notch and get your place in shape with a home detox.
Detoxing your home is more than just cleaning your home. Much like when you detox your body, you are reducing everything to a minimum. When you detox your body you clear it of toxins and feed it with nutritious food, food that re-energises you. Similarly when you detox your home, you get rid of unnecessary items, things that clutter your space and make it difficult for the energy to flow. Many of us, myself included, hold on to too many things that no longer serve us. This could be something we have outgrown, a gift we got, but never really liked or even an item that reminds us of someone we’d rather not be reminded of. Some say that the latter carry negative emotions and are therefore ‘toxic’ for our environment. One thing is for sure; a cluttered space will clutter your mind. On the contrary, a well-organised, uncluttered and clean space will help you relax and re-charge your batteries when you are at home.
Personally, I am convinced that letting go of things – whether physical or emotional – will improve our wellbeing. You can either tackle this from the inside out or the outside in. The latter may be the easier route in most cases.
Having said this, the process of letting go is not always easy, especially when you are trying to do it on your own. You can surf the web for tips and strategies, read books such as The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up by Marie Kondo or simply hire a professional. I chose the latter.
I hired the Marie Kondo trained twin sisters Marieke and Eliette Staub, founders of Clarity Home Detox to help me clear out my closet. According to the Marie Kondo method our clothes are the least emotional and therefore the first items we should clear out.
As an interior designer I get to see many, many homes and I’d say that most people simply have too much stuff, myself included. I had recommended the Marie Kondo method and mentioned Clarity to several of my clients before, which is why I wanted to try their service and see for myself
Home Detox with Clarity
First and foremost, I never had so much fun tidying up. It was very efficient and most importantly long lasting. I admit that I first had my doubts about the folding method and couldn’t imagine myself folding my pants and shirts in such a way for them to ‘stand’ in my closet, but surprisingly I’ve stuck with it, because it really looks a lot more organised. I am therefore quite proud to say that my closet still looks nearly as tidy as right after the session 7 months later. I am therefore living proof that the system works!
Below are the steps we followed when we cleared out my closet:
Marieke and Eliette removed ALL my clothes from the closet, the wardrobe etc. and piled them up on my bed. When I first saw that mountain of clothes I literally had to gasp for air. Feeling slightly dizzy I was wondering what I had gotten myself into…
I was asked to sit down and then was handed each piece of clothing by category (trousers, shirts, blouses, dresses etc.). I had to touch and feel each item and they asked the question “Does it spark joy?”. According to Marie Kondo we should only surround ourselves with things we love, things that “spark joy” and make us feel good.
Depending on my answer the item was either nicely folded and put back in my closet, put on the ‘maybe pile’ (things I wasn’t sure about or wanted to try on), the ‘needs fixing pile’ or the ‘get rid of pile’. Saying “thank you for serving your purpose” to each item you get rid of seemed like a beautiful way of letting go of things, because each items is somehow part has a story to tell
As we went through my stuff, I had memory flashes – good and bad – of places, people and situations. It is certainly a very personal journey and it can be somewhat emotional, but I couldn’t have imagined anyone else I’d rather go through the motions with than Marieke and Eliette. They are honest and direct, but in a soft and understanding way.
It was really great working with them, I enjoyed the process and I am happy with the result.
Alternatively, how about a complete Home Makeover (a combination of a Home Detox and an Interior Design Coaching) that will truly transform your space and how you feel? Just email me for more information.
Just imagine how easy cleaning will be after you have removed all the clutter… For some great tips on how you can clean and polish your home without the use of harsh chemicals, I recommend Ecochair’s blog post Eco-friendly spring cleaning.
Happy Spring(-cleaning and home detoxing) everyone!
P.S. Once you are done with your home detox, why not add a fresh look and feel to your home. Find out what colours and style truly suits you and makes you happy by following these easy steps in my Ebook How to identify the ideal colours & style for your home
Note: This blog post was created in collaboration with Clarity Home Detox (Sponsorship/ unpaid advertising)
Posted by Simone Aïda Baur: I’m a multi-lingual, multi-cultural and multi-passionate award winning international interior designer, award winning blogger and ex-hotelier. Feel free to learn more about my story and connect with me on Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn, Pinterest, Instagram and YouTube.
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