Let’s face it, we all love a clean home, but it isn’t always easy to have a clean home. We are busy! Homemakers, Parents, Workers, Students… we have our hands full, and the expectation of our roles continue to grow.
Throughout the years I’ve come to realise the battle of working full time and maintaining a home – spending my week surviving, then the weekends catching back up… all for it to be back to square one by Monday. Sound familiar?
A clean home is good for the soul
You may have heard the saying ‘The state of your home reflects the state of you mind’. Psychologists for decades have studied the connection between our mental state and our physical surroundings. If you are stressed, it is likely that your home reflects that. It is commonly suggested, that the reversed effect, of having an organised and clean home, can help you feel less stressed in your life. I don’t know about you, but I’ll take option 2, please!
So, what’s the secret? Unfortunately, there isn’t a magic trick or product that will always keep your home clean (let me know if you find one), but there are a few things you can do, to save yourself a load of time and effort, and get the results you need.
#1 – A bit every day keeps the stress away!
The most common misconception of having a maintained home, is that you must spend every single waking hour cleaning, to achieve it.
It may seem simple, but drop those rigid weekend and catch up cleaning practices, and start breaking down your tasks into small regular segments. Just like losing weight or saving money, success comes from regular and consistent habit… and the best way to do this is by creating a daily schedule.
The trick to making this work is by committing and forcing yourself to do a little each and every day. You are going to feel overwhelmed at first, but remember the goal is to save yourself time in the long run!
A daily schedule flawlessly replaces those catch up days that we all desperately implement, like ‘Washing Wednesdays’ and ‘Mopping Mondays’.
#2 – Weekly, Monthly, Annually… Never-ly
Contrary to a daily schedule, you may be wondering how to handle those ‘spring cleaning’ tasks…. Walls, Cobwebs, Windows.
A lot of people break down these larger tasks down into weekly, monthly, or annually time frames. I don’t know about you, but that just sounds like an extended amount of time to procrastinate those responsibilities!
Eliminate the stress and introduce a 6-week rotating cleaning system into your life. The way it works, is by breaking down your house into 6 segments (e.g Bedroom, bathroom, kitchen) and allowing yourself 1 whole week to clean that one area of your home, to its entirety. Rotating these rooms, over a continued 6 week period.
Offering yourself 15 minutes to half an hour a day, on top of your usual daily schedule, for one whole week, gives you approximately 3.5 hours to get the job done. Everything from Walls, Skirting Boards, Light Fittings, Carpets, Internal Windows. You can also use this opportunity to re-visit organisation systems, or complete repairs.
If you haven’t deep cleaned your home in a while, you may need to initially put a little more time into your first 6 week rotation. However, you’ll find as time goes on that you will invest less and less time each week, as your home is regularly maintained. When you hit this ‘sweet spot’, upkeep of your home will become unnoticeable.
#3 – Let go of perfectionism
We all strive to do things the best way, and the correct way – it is because we know how things should be done! We know that grout is best scrubbed with a toothbrush, that dirty dishes shouldn’t sit in the sink for ‘that’ long, and how that stain is going to set if we don’t follow through on laundry steps 1 through to 5.
We look at a room and the first thing we see is filth and grime, and at times we can feel powerless to act on it, because to clean it to the ‘right’ way, or to our standard, it would take a life time. So, feeling deflated, we let it get on top of us.
I am absolutely convinced that once you get rid of perfectionism, and start accepting 80% instead of 100%, you will be well on your way to maintaining a clean home.
Read my next post for more on perfecting your cleaning routine (free templates included!)