Who better to help us through the hurdles of spring cleaning than Olivia Lane, owner of a local green cleaning service. Olivia spends her days helping New York City residents pare down their clutter and tidying up after them with environmentally conscious products. She’s gotten a start on spring cleaning her own life by entering our Sell Everything contest. Find out what goodies are up for grabs on Olivia’s Krrb corner and her strategies for living with less.
According to Olivia, we live in a culture that values stuff and is socialized to want more and more. “I feel like people own too much,” Olivia said. “I appreciate, can care for and use everything I own. If it doesn’t fit those categories, it’s out.”
Self editing begins with being mindful of things brought into the home. For Olivia, that means more window shopping and less physical purchases. She also recommends tossing paper solicitations in the recycle outside the home. It’s important to make decisions before bringing things into the house. Sometimes your life is cluttered with items that were once useful but aren’t needed anymore. It’s why Olivia says every few months you need to reexamine your belongings for what is really necessary. People’s lives and in turn, their priorities are always shifting. When our needs change, it’s an opportunity to share with other people, says Olivia.
When people feel guilty about purging gifts, Olivia advises that you take a picture of it. “Keep the image but regift or post the actual thing to Krrb,” she said. “Acknowledge the love, experience it and honor it but let go of the object.” She also suggests asking for experiences rather than sometime tangible around the holidays.
So Ask Yourself
When you’re spring cleaning this year, ask yourself these questions:
Use Olivia’s list to downsize on the items that clutter your daily life. With less stuff around you, you’ll ensure that you are only surrounded by your most treasured belongings.
Check back tomorrow as we get our hands dirty with Olivia Lane and make our own DIY laundry detergent.