In this post, I will be giving ESSENTIAL tips (from my experience) to follow when doing any sort of cleaning, big or small.
These tips are designed to help you have a stress-free cleaning experience all day, every day.
From deep-cleaning a garage to simply doing the dishes, following these tips will equip you to tackle any sort of cleaning task, and have fun doing it!
I have been there, just like you have: you look at some sort of cleaning project and get overwhelmed just thinking about it. You may get overwhelmed by the smallest task of doing dishes, or on the other hand, perhaps it takes a big deep-cleaning day to overwhelm you.
I have found that while following the advice I will list in this article, I have not had a single overwhelming experience while cleaning anything! These mindsets and pieces of advice really work when applied, and that is why I want to share them with you.
So, let us dive right in!
Focus On What Motivates You to Clean
This is the most important tip I can give you, which is why I listed it first. No matter how much cleaning advice I give you, if you never have some sort of motivation, sooner or later you will quit. No matter if you like cleaning or not, having something that drives you to the finish line of completing a task will help you ignore your dislikes and simply get the job done.
That is why having a motivation for cleaning is of the utmost importance.
I do want to mention that the issue is your heart. Even though you have a motivation to clean, that does not mean you will always have a 100% spotless home 100% of the time. You may be exhausted one day and can only get the bed made, but that is okay because you did the best you could. Having a reason to clean is in place to keep you trying as hard as you can every day so you can meet that goal of a clean home.
I will tell you some things that motivate me to keep a clean home, but you do not have to have the same reasons. Hopefully, though, these will inspire you. :)
One thing that motivates me to clean is my husband. He is pleased when he gets back from work to a clean house. After all, he just worked a long, hard day, and the least he could expect is to walk into a clean and tidy home. So, I do my best every day to make sure that everything is ready and done when he is home.
A clean home = a less stressful environment which = a nice time spent with my family after a long day of us both working.
His health (as well as mine) is also a reason for me to keep a clean and sanitary home. I would feel horrible if either he or I got sick when it could have been prevented by me simply being diligent in my daily chores.
Now, of course, people can still get sick even when you keep a clean house, but I want to minimize that as much as possible.
Another thing that motivates me is my standards. I like seeing a clean house, and I do not like tripping over clutter or seeing a mess. I am a very OCD-type person, so I like things straight, clean, and in their place.
Having a clean space helps me to relax and enjoy things with my family without having to worry about a dirty mess all the time.
This does not really motivate me on a daily basis, but the possibility of having surprise guests over does make me want to keep a clean home as well. :)
Do Not Forget About the Little Things
No matter how minuscule or mundane a task may seem, it can play a big part in your mindset as well as the overall cleanliness of your home.
I once heard someone say to start every day by making your bed. The reason behind this is that even though it may seem like something that is not important, simply doing that small task will motivate you to do another small task, then another one, and so on.
And, if you happen to have a very bad day, at least you can walk into your room and see a bed that is made. :)
I follow this concept daily. Starting my day by making my bed motivates me to clean as well as stifles my desire to snuggle back under the blankets.
Some other little things I do that make my house appear cleaner are:
Drying the sink after I wash my hands.
Cleaning the kitchen sink daily.
Making sure to use linen spray or wax melts daily to keep my house smelling nice.
Spending 5 minutes every evening organizing my fridge.
Letting the fresh air in.
Keeping random stuff in baskets or out of sight.
All in all, it takes me less than 10 minutes to complete these tasks daily.
I usually go by the rule that if it takes less than 5-10 minutes, do it now. This helps to prevent procrastination and laziness.
Focus On ONE Task at a Time
I cannot tell you how much this single tip has helped me! I am the type of person who will start doing something, but then I see something else that needs to be done so I start doing that, and so on. But in the end, all I have left is a bunch of half-finished tasks.
Instead, by focusing on one task at a time, you end up with a bunch of fully-finished tasks.
Here is an example of how I practice this mindset in my daily chore of doing the dishes:
I start by picking up all of the trash and throwing it away. Then I put all of the dishes next to and into the kitchen sink and start washing them. In the end, I wipe down all of the counters and tidy up some things around the kitchen.
This seems so simple, right? That is because it is! Cleaning is not supposed to be hard, but unfortunately, we sometimes make it harder or more complicated than it has to be. All I did in the above example was focus on a singular task and complete it.
Before, I used to wipe down a counter, then throw away a napkin or two, and while I was at it, I might put a dish in the sink. When I used to do that method, I would find that I did not complete any single task and it seemed to prolong the cleaning process.
Doing this method also makes any cleaning task fly right by! You get so focused on finishing a project that you do not realize how much time has gone by and how much you have already gotten done! That is why this rule is used so much by me on a daily basis.
Have a Cleaning Schedule
Having a cleaning schedule is important as you do not have to stop and think about what you have to do on each day. It also helps you to remember when you last did certain tasks.
There are different ways to plan a cleaning schedule, but the most important thing to keep in mind is that it has to work for YOU. Also, do not be afraid to have to change it up a bit as time goes on. I have had to change mine multiple times when I discovered new ways to make it better.
When writing a cleaning schedule, I would add a separate section each for daily, weekly, monthly, quarterly, and yearly tasks. This helps keep everything organized and easy to read.
Some people like to organize their daily cleaning tasks by room, while others prefer to organize them by tasks. Organizing your schedule by rooms means that you only focus on cleaning a certain room each day, whereas organizing by tasks means that you complete a certain task(s) in each room on a certain day.
Here is an example of what I mean:
Organizing by room: Monday is bedroom cleaning day (dust, wash linens, vacuum bedrooms, etc.).
Organizing by task: Monday is dusting day (dust every room on Monday, regardless if it is a bedroom or not).
Do you see the difference?
I like to use a combination of organizing by tasks and rooms, but use what suits you best.
I will be giving a more thorough and in-depth article about my cleaning schedule in the coming weeks, so be on the lookout for that!
Have an “Extra Day”
This is something I just recently added to my cleaning schedule, and it has helped a lot!
Saturday is my extra day, which means that anything I could not get done in the week gets done on Saturday. Doing this means that you will still get all of your cleaning tasks done in the week, regardless of whether something happened that prevented you from completing some of the tasks.
This has helped me not have to do extra work on top of my daily cleaning when I could not complete a day’s tasks.
I like that this advice helps me to not get stressed out over getting everything done in a single day because if something comes up, I can always get that task done on Saturday.
I would suggest having your “extra day” at the end of the week so that it is easier to gauge what you missed.
And, if I do not have anything to get done that day (which is hardly ever), I can just relax and have a nice rest day.
Have a Place for Everything
This piece of advice is mentioned a lot, but it is for good reason.
Having a place for everything ensures that if you are rushed in cleaning, you do not have to think about where to toss something. It is also helpful in the overall appearance of your house, as things will look far more organized in their specific places than they would if tossed in the back of a closet.
Following this advice helps your mental sanity as well since it makes it a lot easier to locate things when you are rushed or running late for something. :)
Depending on how cluttered your space is, at first, it could take a bit of time and effort to declutter things, and then organize it to where you find a spot for everything. But, when you keep that space maintained and tidy, you should not need to do a big decluttering session like that again. It is truly smooth sailing after that!
Maintenance is key when it comes to any type of cleaning. That is essentially what cleaning is. Without maintenance, you will fall into the deep, dark hole of constant stress and decluttering.
That is why I am writing this article: to show you how simple and stress-free cleaning was meant to be.
Use Baskets, Bins, and Storage Containers
Hehe… I think have a slight basket obsession, I would say. Just ask my husband. Ha!
But, like my jar obsession, it is for good reason. Baskets are incredibly useful in almost every area of your home.
Anything unattractive can be tossed in a basket and still look organized. They help gather little things and keep them in one place. Plus, baskets look great everywhere!
They are also usually cost-effective, as you can find them for a cheap price when you shop at thrift stores.
I use baskets all around my house, and my favorite part about them is that you do not have to organize items in a basket or bin because baskets, of themselves, look organized, even if their contents are not.
Cleaning is not difficult, but sometimes you need some help or a slight push to get started. :) I do sincerely hope that you find this article useful and that it helps you to enjoy cleaning.
If you have any other cleaning and organization tips, let me know in the comments below!