If you are anything like me, you will find yourself often envious of other people’s homes with their manicured lawns, gleaming and pristine kitchens and the fresh smell of polish which makes any home inviting and a pleasure to be in.
In fact, we often find our homes are representations of our lives. Calm clean exteriors can help us feel relaxed after a hard day at work, or proud to invite friends and family back to. However, getting there from a dishful of unwashed dishes, a mountain of clothes and cluttered cupboards can feel an impossible task.
I find it often comes to motivation. Some people find nothing more enjoyable than spending time cleaning there surfaces and hoovering, whilst the unmotivated it can often be a chore that is put off until you can take no more. As someone in the latter category, I have read no-end of books, watched programs or participated in daily emails, all in attempt to get some discipline to create a tidy, clean house, I am proud to live in and the truth is like anything, it must become a routine to be maintained.
If your waiting for that moment of inspiration to declutter your house from top to bottom, and that maybe the next book or expert will provide you with the motivation, I hate to be the bearer of bad news but like any change of behaviour, you are going to need to accept, that it’s going to need a change of mindset not just a set of household tips. So here we go a mixture of both mindset changes for the cleaner in you and a set of household tasks so you can take some action.
- First rule – don’t be hard on yourself. Beating yourself up because your mum’s, neighbours house always seems like a cleaning fairy sweeps up all the clutter and washes the dishes, whilst they maintain a family, a dog and a full time job, isn’t going to get you motivated. The truth is you have many qualities and maybe cleaning and housework, just isn’t your thing. We need to break this into manageable steps and tasks. Sit down have a coffee, watch some TV and set a timer. Once the alarm goes off give yourself 10 minutes to do a task (make sure it’s something you can complete, to give yourself a sense of completion) and then sit down and do something else.
- Always have a clean sink. It’s amazing, how much dirty dishes in a kitchen sink, can sap your confidence. Depending upon the size of your family, wash up, after breakfast and at least after your evening meal. Make time for it! You make sure you have time to wash your hair or do your teeth in the morning right? Then make sure you leave your house with a clean sink.
- Keep a dirty clothes basket in every room! This is the easiest wat to keep floor surfaces clear of clothes. Simply put your dirty clothes in the basket and carry downstairs. Make sure you educate the kids to use this too, and don’t forget the bathroom!!
- When you get up in the morning make your bed!! To get your head in a better place and to seek rewards of your new cleaning routine, getting into a made bed, means better sleep and you get off to a great start in keeping to your cleaning routine.
- When you get out of the shower or bath, give it a rinse with cleaner. Shouldn’t take more than 5-10 minutes and it’s another easy task you have completed.
- Talking of bathrooms, as part of your nightly routine, spray some cleaner round your toilet and continue your night-time routine. By the time you have cleaned your teeth and washed your face, you cleaner will have done it’s a job and can be rinsed off for a nice clean toilet
- When you make your morning coffee, set a task. Whether that’s emptying your dishwasher, emptying your bins or setting a to do list, again your only adding one task to your ever day routine.
- Cooking is great! Fresh ingredients, flavourful tastes but what isn’t fun is dried on food to saucepans, or empty sauces bottles, or mess on your countertops. Clean as you cook! It’s much easier and you will find it’s not as overwhelming to wash only you plates after you have eaten if the utensils, pans and crockery have already been done.
- A tip from domestic cleaners Blue Square Cleaning “This is my favourite tip! Keep a clutter basket near your front door. When your just about to leave for the day for the school run or work, just put everything you find in there. Upon your return go through your clutter basket and put everything back in the room it belongs. You will find this will stop a build-up of clutter.”
- Take advantage of commercial breaks! Use the breaks to tidy up your surrounding area!