Housework…Somebody has to do it…
For much of my adult life I have held a vehement disdain for cleaning. Sure, I love a clean house just as much as the next gal, but I HATED cleaning!
Yes, I know, we have kids and they do have chores. Yet, it still seems that I have so much cleaning to do. After spending far to long dwelling on the misery of housework, I decided it was time for a change.
I was going to learn to LOVE housework!
Have you ever met someone that LOVES to clean? I have and secretly always wished I possessed that trait. How amazing would it be to find it joyous to wipe your son’s pee sprinkles off the toilet each morning.
Okay, okay…that may have gone a little too far, but I think you get my point.
When we moved in to our permanent home, I embarked on a journey to love housework. This was no easy feat and I wouldn’t say that I LOVE housework.
While I still don’t LOVE it, I have made my peace with it. For me, at this point in my life I am pretty happy with simply making peace with the dirt devil.
Here are some tips to start you on the path to making peace with housework!
Understand that some housework is better than none.
This one was probably the hardest thing for me to wrap my mind around. I don’t follow the Fly Lady but I did read her book and click through the site. The idea that we wrap ourselves up in perfection to a point of paralysis resonated with me.
Many times, if I knew I wasn’t going to be able to accomplish something perfectly, I just wouldn’t do it. Then, the house would be in total disarray, I would freak out and clean all day and then the cycle would start over again.
The idea that SOMETHING is better than NOTHING intrigued me. I wanted to adopt the mentality, but I didn’t whole heartedly believe it at first.
It took several weeks for me to see that a little housework here and there when I had a moment really did make a difference.
So if all you have time to do one day is sweep the floor and wipe the counters, that’s okay. As long as you keep trucking along, doing something everyday, things will work out.
Use products that you enjoy.
Buy yourself cleaning products that smell good and make your job easier. If you hate cleaning with vinegar so you avoid cleaning all together, then get a new cleaning product!
For a long time I was hung up on green cleaning and insisted on making my own cleaners. It was time consuming, they never worked well and some smelled pretty awful no matter how much essential oil I used. Not to mention my husband hated it when I cleaned with vinegar.
Now, I still use eco-friendly, biodegradable products that work well and smell AMAZING. Also, I invested in some Norwex cloths. I truly enjoy using these things so I don’t put off cleaning anymore.
Repeat positive affirmations.
When I first started saying positive affirmations out loud I felt really silly. It seemed very hokey to me and I am a total skeptic when it comes to this stuff.
But I did them anyway because that is what all the big “self help” guru’s are touting these days. It worked, or at least it tricked my mind into believing these things.
The trick with affirmations is that you say them out loud and often. You can even write them on post it notes and place them in areas you will see them frequently.
This is the list I picked from each day.
Develop a solid cleaning routine.
Routines are a very important part of how I organize my life. There is a routine for just about every area of my life.
They help me stay focused and keep me from getting overwhelmed with life…I am VERY easily overwhelmed, it is paralyzing. To avoid reaching that point I developed a series of routines to keep things manageable in my eyes.
Having a solid cleaning routine SPECIFICALLY designed for my house was paramount to making peace with housework. A good cleaning routine keeps the whole house in pretty good condition so no single area gets overwhelmingly messy.
Here is some extra reading about how I develop my routines:
Find what intrinsically motivates you.
Intrinsic motivation is doing something simply because you like it or you just want to do it. Admittedly, I am still not intrinsically motivated by the act of cleaning itself.
My intrinsic motivation comes in the form of believing that my family deserves the best and I want to give that to them.
Maintaining a clean and healthy home falls into this category.
I want our home to be our sanctuary from a long day at work or school.
I want to build a home culture that my kids want to come back to after they grow up…and bring grandbabies into…
I want other family members to feel relaxed and comfortable when they come over (and not feel like the need to help me clean).
A few other random things.
There are some extra and totally random ideas and things that helped me along the way…and to be honest, still help me stay motivated.
Diffuse energizing essential oils. A blend of equal parts orange and peppermint is my favorite get-up-and-go scent!
Think of your cleaning time as a form of exercise. It keeps you active when you may other wise be sitting down reading or something.
Remember that a clean and organized house (I am still working on the organized part) will save you time, energy and money in the long run! Have you ever ran out and bought something that you KNEW you had but just couldn’t find, and needed it right away?
That’s happened too many times to us and cleaning and organizing helped solve that.
Your self-esteem will go up…
Your family will be happier…
See…a bit random….while we are on the topic of randomness…I love this van picture!
It took quite a while for me to make peace with housework and will probably always be something that I am mindful of.
But, the beauty of it is that I no longer cringe when I think about cleaning. I don’t cry anymore when I look at the dirty toilet…
Yes I have been known to do that…I think my exact words were, “WHAT HAS MY LIFE COME TOOOOO!”
I hope you enjoyed this and found it helpful. If you can relate to anything I have said here, then I have done my job.
If you have any tips and tricks you would like to share let me know!