We’ve all done it – come home after a long day, pushed through the front door and headed straight for our favourite spot on the couch. Our jacket and keys get dumped on the counter, the tall glass we’ve poured ourselves lands on the coffee table – and there it stays until morning… or dare I say, the weekend.
My recent post Secrets to a clean home offered top tips on how to keep your home regularly maintained, but the true secret to keeping your home clean is in the habits you create!
When people hear the term ‘habits’, they see the word effort. We usually view making a change to our behavior as subtracting something, but we don’t generally consider that we can also add something, too.
Humans are creatures of habit, and by introducing these simple cleaning habits to your life, you’ll be one step closer to an easily maintained home!
#1 – One touch method
Don’t fall into the trap of putting things down to deal with later! The ‘one-touch method’ is the idea of only ‘touching’ the item you are holding once, instead of dumping it in the wrong spot and having to move it again to its appropriate home later. Invest the extra 10 seconds it takes to put your coat away in the closet, or your cup directly in the dishwasher now, and you will have a lot less small messes to worry about later.
#2 – Clean as you go
You may have heard someone refer to themselves as either a ‘messy cook’ or a ‘clean cook’, and it usually depends on the state of their kitchen once dinner is ready. In simple terms, a clean cook tidies their mess as they go, and the messy cook, well… cooks up a storm, and leaves themselves with a big mess to tidy at the end! Regardless of what sort of cook you are, we know it takes a lot more motivation to deal with the latter!
We can apply the techniques of the ‘clean cook’ to all areas of our home. For example, if you brush your teeth and you drop a little toothpaste on the counter, wipe it up. Or throw that empty toilet roll directly in the bin. It might seem simple, but it’s the small things that we do that can really contribute to keeping a maintained home.
#3 – Be ok with ‘Clean Enough’
This one can be tough if you’re known to be a bit of a perfectionist. It’s easy to get caught up in the small time-consuming details, like having the shiniest sink or streak free appliances, but these can sometimes be the very things that make keeping a clean home so daunting. Relieve your stress by finding a happy medium. I have what I refer to as my 80/20 rule, 80% is clean, and that ‘extra 20%’ is taking clean to the full mile. Let’s use the bathroom as an example;
80% clean would be,
- Clean shower screen and tiles
- A wiped basin and bench top
- Mopped floor
20% extra would be,
- Polished faucet/s
- Streak free shower screen and mirrors
- Grout scrubbed
When you see it on paper, it seems sort of crazy to expect yourself to keep your home always 100% maintained, doesn’t it? Learning to be happy with ‘ok’, is the key to a maintained home.
Check out my post Perfecting your cleaning routine, for tips on creating your own personalised daily cleaning schedule.