Some people clean a little corner of the house each day so they never have to face an entire day of tidying up. However, most of us are not that diligent. A house is meant to be lived in and, as such, it is bound to look, well, lived-in.
Spring cleaning requires planning. This includes thinking about safety. If you are about to get involved in extensive cleaning because of an upcoming move, or because you are preparing to place your home on the market, there is a good chance your project will involve lifting, climbing and physical strain beyond what you normally require of your body on a daily basis.
Take the time to write down at least an outline of your plan of action. This can help you foresee the need for supplies so you avoid wasting time traveling back and forth to the store on the appointed day. It will also help you picture your project so that you can pinpoint activities for which you might require the assistance of a more nimble individual or better tools.
Thus, as you plan the great cleaning day of all cleaning days, keep this in mind:
1 – Calisthenics anyone? First, warm up a bit. If you have asked children or teenagers to help, this could be a fun way to get in the mood for cleaning and it can be very simple. Turn on some music and share a silly dance.
2 – Do not stumble upon you stuff. As you clean or sort through items, you may find it convenient to make piles around the room. Though you may be in good shape, spring cleaning will exhaust you and your mind faster than you think. If you have to walk over piles, it is time to stop and clear the path.
3 – Can you see over the mountain? We all do it; pile clothes and books and things into our arms for the ultimate trip to the basement or garage so we save time. If you want to make sure you return from the basement, first reduce your load so you can see where you’re going. Also keep a free hand to hold on to banisters. You would not go down the road in your car on only two wheels now, would you? If you answered yes, spring cleaning is the least of your problems!
4 – Out of reach, but not out of sight. Cleaning products, even those labeled “natural”, should be kept safely away from children and pets. However, if they are old enough to understand, cleaning with children is a great opportunity to teach them to handle these products safely. Supervise at all times and provide protective gloves and goggles as necessary. This is also a good excuse to make cleaning fun. Kids love to play dress up. Also, be mindful of the hazard of water buckets. These represent a real danger of drowning for children and pets.
5 – Check your climbing gear. Is your ladder more like a swaying reed than a stepping implement? Buying a new one right now could be your best investment at the moment. Open the ladder completely, make sure the locks are in place and never, ever step on the very top step. Also, never use a ladder when you are alone in your home and if pets might come under foot, isolate them in another room while you climb about the house.
6 – Playing with tools, are we? As with cleaning products, tools are a hazard. But if you are not used to handling them yourself, they are a hazard for you too. Friends and family members are usually more than happy to help if asked, especially if they happen to be well-versed in the use of tools. Your request for assistance lets them know that you recognize their skills. Also, sharing a task is a great way to share company.
Now that you have all your ducks in a row, make sure they are not underfoot! In other words, pay attention.
Also read: “I Had Completely Forgotten About These Shoes!