Swedish Death Cleaning – What Is It & Do I Need It?
The term death cleaning isn’t as morbid as it sounds. In fact, when applied to or executed in one’s life, it can improve its quality and make it simpler, comfortable, and even enjoyable. Let’s see how:
Swedish Death Cleaning
Popularized in 2018 by Margareta Magnusson, the term originates from the Swedish word döstädning, where dö translates to death and städning translates to cleaning. The Swedish word refers to dealing with and decluttering one’s stuff as one approaches old age and relieve their loved ones from doing the same after their death.
What Made Swedish Death Cleaning so Popular?
Soon after its introduction, Swedish death cleaning became a popular decluttering method around the world. Unlike other methods, Swedish death cleaning doesn’t preach minimalism, doesn’t try to limit one’s spending habits or the number of items they should own, or pushes one to evaluate their feelings about their things.
Instead, it allows one to enjoy all the material goods they want to enjoy in life while acknowledging they won’t be able to enjoy it all forever. The concept of Swedish death cleaning is to realize that one won’t be around long enough to use or wear out all of their belongings.
While the thought comes with its fair share of sadness, it also comes with a lot of freedom and understanding. Acknowledging and accepting one’s mortality can free one from material pleasures, allowing them to focus on their relationships. Moreover, Swedish death cleaning can prove beneficial to one’s loved ones as much or even more than oneself.
Should You Attempt Swedish Death Cleaning?
Swedish death cleaning can be the most useful decluttering method for people in a later stage of life. It can also help those who own more than they need, those who don’t want their loved ones to fight after their death, or even those diagnosed with a severe illness. If you fall in any of these categories or if you are only looking for a practical method of decluttering, Swedish death cleaning can prove to be helpful to you.
While one can hire a lawyer and leave the distribution of goods in their will, a special kind of joy can be found by personally handing one’s treasured items to one’s loved ones. It also makes those precious goods more valuable for those who are inheriting them.
Moreover, as one attempts death cleaning, they come across all the material goods they collected over time that they might have forgotten about. These goods can bring a lot of good memories with them too. One can then decide to donate, pass on, or keep those items depending on their condition and worth. Giving away these goods can also bring feelings of gratefulness and contentment.
Swedish Death Cleaning – Where to Begin
The number of goods you’re looking to clutter shouldn’t depend on when you’re starting. You can practice death cleaning any time you want to death clean in your life. The only thing that you should be mindful of should be your comfort.
A good place to begin death cleaning is by sorting out documents. Get your affairs on paper in order. If you own something that can be inherited, decide who it should go to once you’re gone.
The next step should be looking around your home and identifying the areas that can be made simpler without compromising your comfort. You can pare down household and personal items to essentials without compromising your comfort. Don’t feel bad about donating items you once thought you would use more than you did. Giving your belongings to those who would use them is a great use too.
The last items on your list should be valuables. If you have fine jewelry, expensive art, or other precious goods that you don’t believe you’ll ever use, pass them on to your loved ones. You should only pass down valuables to your loved ones. Don’t give them worn-out furniture or old décor, the likes of which can be found at thrift stores. The purpose of death cleaning is to make your loved ones’ lives easier after you pass away. You don’t want to burden them while you’re alive.
Cleaning after a dead loved one can add to one’s grief. In many instances, those grieving for their loved ones box everything up and place it in storage space. By decluttering your material goods in your lifetime, you can put your belongings to better use, save your loved ones through the gruesome confrontation with your stuff, and make their grief of losing you a little easier.
Once you’ve decluttered your home, you can go the extra mile by thoroughly cleaning your home. This step will make your home healthier for you to live while also ensuring that your loved ones won’t have to deal with your home’s restoration after you are gone. Many restoration services, such as 911 Restoration of Boston, provide thorough cleaning and disinfecting services that can be beneficial, especially after death cleaning.