Spring cleaning tips to declutter your home and mind

Spring cleaning tips to declutter your home and mind

BURLINGTON, Vt. (WCAX) – Springtime is here, and you may have spent your Sunday cleaning out your closet and garage.

“Before I put things away in the closet for the summer, I thought I really ought to lighten my winter gear,” said Mark Paulsen of Essex Junction.

Paulsen took a light coat to the Outdoor Gear Exchange’s consignment section in downtown Burlington.

“I realized we had too many things, so I wanted to get things back into circulation for somebody who needs them,” he said.

Spring is the second busiest time of year for consignment intake at the Outdoor Gear Exchange. Employees say the traffic is returning to pre-pandemic levels.

“On a really slow weekday we might get 80 items, up to 300 to 400 on weekend days,” said Peter Hiskes of the Outdoor Gear Exchange.

“Honestly, I think we could fill three or four of these stores with the amount of things people want to bring in,” said Michelle Jones of the Exchange, a consignment store in Essex Junction.

Jones says consignment intake has never been higher.

“We’ve actually had to pause our consignment just for this couple of weeks to get caught up because we had run out of room in the back,” Jones said.

“People are in their busy bee stage in Vermont. They’re very efficient. We pick up, our business really picks up this time of year,” said Alise Certa of Chittenden Solid Waste District.

Certa says CSWD’s drop-off centers see a lot of tires, old equipment, yard waste and old furniture this time of year. And while people are encouraged to take their waste to CSWD, Certa also says reusing and recycling in your community is always a good idea.

“Think about a neighborhood swap. You have lots of things in your garage, in the basement that you might want to get rid of, but maybe a neighbor could get use out of it too,” said Certa.

Decluttering this spring can also have impacts past just a clean house.

“If you were to empty out some of those spaces and only have things you really love — pictures of your family, your favorite books — and get rid of the rest, you’ll feel yourself calming down,” said Amanda Lau, a clarity coach at FromWithinCoaching in Burlington.

She says mental decluttering can be a part of your spring cleaning plan, too.

“What are things on my calendar that I keep saying yes to and committing to that aren’t filling my cup? What are things I can start saying no to? Or, also, what are things I don’t make time for that I really love right now? When you start to declutter your calendar, you can make time for self-care and activities that you really love,” Lau said.

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