I'm pretty sure there is no one on this earth that actually enjoys cleaning. Like, Yes! Sign me up! Let me clean all freakin day! If you do, bless. Come clean my house.
Since cleaning is something I actually loathe, I've come up with some little shortcuts to keeping the home clean without breaking my back on a daily basis. I used to put things off for so long because I didn't have the time to do it perfectly. Since I couldn't be perfect I wouldn't do it at all. I am, what Jon Acuff would call, a procrastinating perfectionist.
I learned something from Jon about a year and a half ago when I read his book, Quitter. He says, “90% perfect and shared with the world changes more lives than 100% perfect and stuck in your head.” This has not only changed the way I approach my writing and business ventures, it's changed the way I look at just about anything. It's given me freedom to be 90% perfect at being a wife, a mom, in my cooking, and my cleaning...really just about everything.
Instead of spending 3 hours cleaning, I spend about 15 minutes each day. Of course there are other little cleaning spurts throughout the day but 15 minutes of dedicated vacuuming and wiping things down or dusting has ended up saving me hours of frustration. My house may not be Martha clean but it's clean enough and I'm good with that.
Here are some tips for keeping your house clean just a little at a time.
Not everyone will need to do this but we do a quick vacuum sweep of the entire house every day. We have pets so this helps rid the house of hair and dust and is done fairly quickly. We don't worry about getting into every corner or going over every baseboard. Those are saved for special 15 minute tasks every once in a while.
Wipe down your sink and mirrors every day. It will take you one minute and it will keep you from spending a huge chunk of time taking everything off, scouring, wiping down, drying, and putting everything back.
Running your duster over all of your furniture and shelves, quickly, every day is going to keep that job from getting too hard. It keeps the build-up gone and saves you the hassle of moving everything to dust.
Give your toilet a little swish with the brush every day. I usually give the inside of the toilet a swish, then wipe down the outside of the toilet with toilet paper and flush. Done in 30 seconds or less.
Do one load of laundry every day. No matter what. Only have 1/2 a load, just do it. Because if you save that 1/2 load for tomorrow, you may end up with two! Of course there are days when I do more because of sheets or towels and if you have a family of ten you may need to do two loads a day. But for the average family, doing one load every day is going to keep that mountain away.
At the end of each day set a timer for 5 minutes and have the whole family pitch in to "pick up" whatever is out of place. You'd be amazed at what you all can accomplish in 5 minutes!
We run our dishwasher every night. It's the kids job to unload it in the morning. It's just routine now and keeps us disciplined. Even if it's not a FULL load we still run it. If it's only 1/2, we'll wait but I would say most nights our dishwasher gets run.
For some reason, if my kitchen sink is clean, it makes me feel like my whole house is clean. This means if the dishwasher is full, I hand wash whatever doesn't fit and put it away. There's nothing worse than waking up to a sink full of nasty.
The only way these tips will help is if you get consistent at them. Doing a little every day is going to keep those big cleaning jobs at bay.
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