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1. Prioritize/Getting Ready
This step is important because it will help you build the desire and energy to actually get around and clean your room. For me, I really want to get the stuff off of my bed stand and dresser, so that's my first priority, but in order to do this I need to find somewhere to put it all. So I need to clean my closet and maybe even my floors first. Also, put on some upbeat music too! Get in the cleaning mood!
2. Get rid of the personal/embarrassing stuff first.
I have an embarrassing story for this one. When I was in college, I invited some people over in my dorm room and they acted awkwardly and more people came and acted awkwardly... Later one of the girls says there was underwear in the room with a legit dried up poop stain on them. When I brought it up to someone in a different dorm hall, he said, "Oh yeah, I heard about that." It was awful but I've been much better about putting my underwear in the dirty hamper ever since. Please also learn from my mistake. I can also clearly see lube on my dresser too... so I guess I still have this habit.
3. Open a window.
I actually don't always do this, but once my landlord saw my room and insisted on opening a window right away; it was winter and the house was already cold. Then she insisted on helping while stepping on my book on the floor; it really made my stress way worse.
An alternative is to light a candle, or do both.
4. Wash your sheets.
This is an early step because you can have your washing machine going while you clean your room. It also makes sure you don't have a resting spot while cleaning. Also, let's be honest... if your room is a disaster state, you probably haven't cleaned your sheets and pillow cases in a while.
5. Get rid of the dishes.
This includes all food, anything perishable, fast food containers, and empty plastic water bottles. If it goes bad, you will regret it later.
6. Throw away any garbage.
Grab a garbage bag and get this done in one big walk around your room. I have a dog and I let her chew on paper, so I have all kinds of obvious garbage I need to throw out. This also includes any wrappers, old receipts, and so on. Basically, this is for anything that's obviously garbage.
7. Clean the floor.
Make it so you can see your floor; it really helps your mood when you enter it from school or work. If it makes you feel any better, I have all kinds of clothes on my floor right now, some photography film, and... a hand held mirror? I don't even know how I manage to get my room like this sometimes...
8. Take stuff off the top of tables and dressers.
This is my problem, so I don't know how much advice I can give here. Basically, some stuff needs to go into storage, and some stuff needs a whole new home all together. To clear all of that stuff, you need another place to put it first.
9. Put clothes away.
No more taking clothes straight out of the clean laundry bin. Organize a place for this season's clothes, clothes for work, and maybe even a place for clothes that are too small for you right now. When you need to get ready for something quickly, you will thank yourself for doing this.
10. Get three boxes.
Make a pile for things you're going to keep, things you're going to donate to a second hand store, and things you're going to throw out.
What you have decided to keep, make a space for it and make some sense behind it. It can be convenient for getting the most commonly used things or it can be organized by colour. It's your room so do whatever makes you happy.
12. Organize jewelry and makeup.
This is really on the list for my own sake. I really need to do this and I really want to do this. I just feel I would happier if I got around to it.
13. Take stuff to the second hand store.
This is important because I have left stuff in a box labeled "Donate" for a couple of months. So I've decided to put the actual process of taking the box to the donation place onto the list.
14. Take a break
Just kidding, a break is a bad idea because then you won't get back to work. If you are going to take a break, just eat a snack or walk your dog. No Netflix and no YouTube.
You can buy a duster or you can put an old sock on your hand and just kinda rub things. This is mainly for shelf space.
16. Make your bed.
I thought making your bed was ridiculous for years, but it really does make the room look nicer. It's also nice to get into a well made bed. Pro tip: if you don't want to make your bed in the morning, you can make it right before you go to bed. It's actually a pretty nice feeling.
17. Sweep/Mop/Vaccuum Floor
I personally think mopping is fun, but I've heard this is just me.
18. Make sure dresser and closet doors can close.
If you can't close dresser shelves and closest doors, re-arrangement is necessary.
19. Put up posters or maybe even move furniture around.
You did it! Your room is looking amazing! Why stop there? Put up a new poster and make your room really and truly yours. After all, it's your den, your safe place, your sanctuary.
20. Take a picture of it.
You need this for evidence to prove to family and friends that you finally got around to cleaning your room. It's an amazing reward after a lot of work has been done.