Spring is in the air, the weather is beautiful, the sun is shining and . . . . revealing all of the dust and dirt that our winter housecleaning didn’t quite clear away – Darn! While cleaning house isn’t everybody’s idea of a good time, there’s something about spring cleaning that makes us feel renewed and happy. This “feel good” feeling dates back centuries with several cultural traditions thought to be the originators including the following.
A Jewish Tradition
Passover is one of many religious traditions that is thought to be the possible origin of spring cleaning. During Passover (March or April), the Jewish people commemorate their departure from Egypt. During this celebration it’s traditional to move all leavened products (foods made with yeast) from the home, including the utensils used to make them. Many historians believe that Jewish people would thoroughly clean their homes before Passover to make certain that nothing leavened remain.
To prepare for Chinese New Year (late January/early February), it’s an important tradition to thoroughly spring clean their homes and have it completed by Chinese New Year. Every inch of the home is scrubbed and swept, broken household items tossed out and some families follow this up with Feng Shui practices. Once the cleaning is done, they hang paper couplets (chunlian) around the doorway to bring good luck for the New Year.
During the spring equinox (March 21), Iranians celebrate the New Year (Now Rouz) with a festival that lasts two weeks and features a variety of celebrations. Before the festivities begin, the Iranian people take part in “khaneh takani” which means “shaking the house”, or what we call “spring cleaning”, taken to an entirely new level – shaking the house.
Whether these spring cleaning traditions are associated or not, the practice is believed by some to be biological because most people enjoy the renewed energy they experience when spring arrives. Because there’s less sunlight during the winter months, we generate more sleep hormones, making us sleepier. When the sunny days return, we magically feel more energetic.
From a Healthy Perspective
Spring cleaning has both psychological and physical effects on us. From a health perspective, spring cleaning helps clean out dirt and dust to avoid illnesses that include allergies and asthma. You can take deep cleaning to an even safer level by using naturally non-toxic household cleansers like Pure Care’s to ensure that you’re not adding more toxins by using the toxin-ridden options.
From a psychological standpoint, the winter gloom connotes stagnated energy and things left undone. Springtime, on the other hand, is a time of renewal and the physically letting go of things you don’t need anymore, cleaning and opening up your home to fresh air and sunlight. It also opens you up psychologically, making it possible to come up with new ideas and a happier spirit.
So, go for it and get some good old fashioned spring cleaning done, tidying up your home while you let the fresh spring air and sunlight in. When you’re finished cleaning, treat yourself and your home to some new, young plants or put together a pretty vase full of fresh spring flowers, the perfect touch to your fresh, spring-ready home.