Cleaning and being organized can streamline your life and make things easier. Getting organized and being on a good cleaning schedule however, is not always easy, especially if you are chronic messy person. Sometimes things seem so overwhelming, that you are paralyzed and instead of doing something, nothing gets done. You have no idea where to start. Well, believe me I understand, because that was me a few years ago. I still have to fight my messy tendencies, but it has gotten significantly easier to do. If I can do it, so can you. I don’t know how many times people would pop over unannounced and I would either hide, open the door but not let them in, or try to do a quick clean and say I was sick and that is why it was so messy. I have been embarrassed by my house so much. You know that your house is messy when you have to keep all your other rooms closed up all the time. Sometimes I would just look at the mess and just cry. It was terrible and I knew it would take forever to clean. Even when I did clean, it seemed I barely made a dent in the mess, and I would be exhausted. The little that I did seemed to get dirty again the next day. So what’s a girl (or guy) to do?
Start small. Pick a room and make it a goal to get something done and maintain that everyday. Clean in small bursts. Cleaning can be a lot like exercise, you can either do a long strenuous workout, or you can split it up into small parts throughout the day. Both are just as effective, but the latter is more conducive to busy schedules, and newbie domestic divas in training. This also prevents that feeling of being overwhelmed. Clean for fifteen minutes at a time. Set a timer and when it goes off, take a break or do something else. But, don’t forget to pat yourself on the back because that was fifteen minutes that were well spent and productive. You’ll be amazed at how much is accomplished in fifteen minute increments.
Clean to feel better. You might just be thinking what the heck is she talking about? How will cleaning make me feel better? If I liked cleaning, I wouldn’t be in this mess in the first place, literally. Well seeing your hard effort pay off will pick up your spirits. So, go for the gusto. Clean things that will make the biggest visual impact, with the least amount of work first. Start with surfaces. Clean off that nightstand, or the kitchen countertop, or the bathroom counters. The more negative space, or space without clutter, the more positive you will feel with what has been done. Seeing your elbow grease and hard work come to fruition is a strong motivator to continue with the war against mess and a big step towards achieving peace of mind between your home and yourself.
Great things stick together. Get everything that doesn’t belong in a room and put it in a basket or if you are like I was, baskets. Then at the end of the day take fifteen minutes to sort thru the basket and put things were they belong. Still only on room number one and have no idea where things go? This is were a good old sharpie marker comes in handy. Mark old cardboard boxes with labels. Write one for each room in your house. Once everything is divided into your rooms, take one room at a time and try to break the items down into smaller similar groupings. Throw out anything you haven’t used in the past 3-6 months. Set aside seasonal items for storage. Take your time. As long as you put away at least a few things everyday, you can be on your way to an organized space.
Start a morning or night time ritual or both. Doing something daily, is a great way to prevent working harder weekly. Everyday, wipe down all your countertops, load your dishwasher, or let tough dishes soak overnight, do a load of laundry, wipe down your toilet seat, and just give it a quick swirl with the brush. Now relax and eat breakfast, or slip into your pajamas. You should feel good knowing that if nothing else gets done, you accomplished this. Pretty soon you will get used to this and it will be second nature. You will of course have days where you forget or it doesn’t get done. That’s okay, you are human. Just make a mental note to do it tomorrow, or if you are like me, you need a list. Be realistic and do small things everyday. Reward yourself with fresh flowers or a new fancy cleaning gadget. Get pretty and functional containers to hold and store your things. Anything that makes cleaning easier and your home more aesthetic is the way to go.
Becoming a domestic diva won’t happen overnight, but what’s great is that you can see small positive changes in fifteen minutes. Not instantaneous, but pretty darn close. Remember, you can do this, you are not alone. So, get ready to be a domestic diva, or least fake it until you make, and enjoy cosmetic bliss.