This was a year for adjusting our lives. We learned how to take advantage of extra time. We made the most of unexpected circumstances. We adjusted our work schedules, our mom schedules, our fitness schedules, and so many other things. So why not tackle the biggest chore of them all?
Tiding. Your. House.
It's a job that feels draining, thankless, and never-ending, but nothing feels better than walking through a clean home. I feel so much happier when my home is clean. I think clearer, I have more patience, and I feel like I can tackle the day.
So where to start?
Here are five tips to get you tidying the house, and keeping it that way.
1. A Place For Everything and Everything In Its Place
The goal is less clutter--always less clutter. Junk drawers, junk closets, and catch-all rooms are our enemies. These spaces give us an excuse to keep junk and distract us from putting things away properly. Having a place for everything makes cleaning up easier, and it prevents junk from piling up.
2. Do the Little Stuff Everyday
Making beds, doing the dishes, sweeping, vacuuming--all those little things pile up quickly when neglected. Start the day by checking off some of the little tasks: empty the dishwasher, vacuum one room, make your bed. At the end of the day, clear up scattered clutter, wipe off a counter, put away shoes and hang up jackets. They're small tasks, but keeping up with the little stuff will make big stuff easier!
3. Make a Reasonable Cleaning Schedule That Works For You
Break up your big cleaning tasks into specific days: have a laundry day, a bathroom day, a day for yard work. Setting a specific day for your big chores will spread out the work and make it seem lighter. It also helps you turn cleaning into a habit you can easily track and plan for. Adjust your big cleaning days to fit your schedule and your life. If you have busy weekdays, save the big stuff for the weekends. Big weekends? Break it up through the week. One schedule doesn’t fit all. Make it fit your lifestyle, and you’ll be able to stick to it much easier.
4. Clean As You Go
Messes and clutter builds up throughout the day, particularly in a household with small kids. Making a habit of cleaning as you go will prevent clutter and small spills from growing into monstrous messes that are overwhelming to tackle. Clean up clutter before you go out. Put away toys before you leave a room. Wipe down the counters in the bathroom and kitchen after you use them. All these little actions will keep your high-trafficked areas tidier and easier to manage.
5. Get Everyone Involved
Lead by example, but don’t be a solo show. On your big cleaning days, give everyone a task. On your daily tasks, ask for help. Find tasks that are age-appropriate, and remember that perfection is not key. If a kid is willing and able to make her bed, don’t fuss if it doesn’t look perfect. There is power in delegation, and there is power in raising capable children!
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