Some women truly enjoy keeping house.
I am not one of those women.
While I understand Why Homemaking Matters and that it can be a tremendous ministry to your family and to others, I simply am never going to be a fan of cleaning. (I actually do enjoy cooking, though…)
And so… I procrastinate. And things don’t get done. And then I feel bad.
Do you ever have trouble motivating yourself to clean the house?
Do you ever look around the house, see everything that needs to be done, feel completely overwhelmed, and then just sit down and watch TV or scroll on Facebook instead?
Yeah, we all have days like that.
Here’s how you can overcome them.
Need a little encouragement in your homemaking?
Be sure to check out the third annual Homemaking Ministries Online Conference, happening October 25-28, 2016!
With awesome sessions on everything from meal planning to finding balance in motherhood and marriage to having a thriving ministry right from home – this is one event you won’t want to miss!
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1. Be Prepared
Cleaning is hard enough. Don’t make it even harder on yourself by not having the supplies you need on hand. Nothing is a motivation-killer like going to clean out a room only to find that you’re out of trash bags, your Windex is down to the very last drop and you can’t find your dust rag anywhere… (hint: a clean sock will work in a pinch… not that I would know…)
If you are constantly running out of cleaning supplies, you might consider signing up for a household product subscription service like Amazon Subscribe and Save. It’s easy, and you’ll never have to worry about running out of paper towels again.
2. Make it a Routine
Want to know the best time to clean the house? For me, it’s from 8 to 10 am. After I drop off my oldest at school, before the youngest goes down for a nap.
You see, I’ve been cleaning my house at the same time every day for so long now, that I don’t even have to think about it. As soon as I get home, I naturally walk right into the kitchen and start tidying up. My body is just used to it and it does it without thinking.
Recently, I decided I should try to move my cleaning time to later in the day: after dinner, before the kids go to bed. Ugh, I was so unmotivated! My body is used to preparing to be done for the day at that point, not to get up and clean the whole house! But I decided to stick with it, and it’s getting easier.
So, when is the best time for you? Choose a time, and then STICK WITH IT. Every day.
It will be hard at first, but if you make it a consistent routine, I promise you will eventually just start cleaning without even thinking about it. Really!g
3. Start Small
I don’t know about you, but the idea of “cleaning the house” can be incredibly overwhelming at times. There is so much to do, especially when you let it all pile up, and sometimes it seems like it would take hours to make even a small dent.
If you’re starting to feel overwhelmed, start small.
Set the timer for ten minutes and just do what you can. Or pick one area of one room and start there. Maybe it’s the dishes, the laundry that needs to be put away or the bathroom counters that need to be wiped down.
Most of the time, when you start seeing your success in one area, it’s just the motivation you need to keep going.
4. Distract Yourself (but not too much)
Cleaning is boring. But it’s a LOT better if you have something else to do at the same time. I usually listen to Christian music or blogging podcasts while I clean. What will help motivate you? You could…
- Turn on some upbeat dance music
- Call a friend or relative to chat
- Put on your favorite TV show
- Invite a friend over to help (you can take turns on each others’ houses)
- Listen to an audiobook
Just be careful not to distract yourself too much. You don’t want to get so preoccupied doing other things that you don’t get any cleaning done. That would defeat the purpose.
5. Declutter. Then Declutter Again.
I’ve been doing a lot of this lately, and it has made a HUGE difference! I’m seriously on the HUNT to find things I can toss out now.
The more things you have in your home, the more things you have to clean, pick-up, keep track of and take care of. And honestly, I’m willing to bet you don’t need a huge chunk of it. It’s just taking up space in your house and driving you crazy for no good reason.
Get rid of it!
- Go through your closet and pull out all of the clothes you don’t wear on a regular basis. Donate them.
- Go through all of your paper clutter. Trash what you can, and make digital copies of important papers you need to keep.
- Donate old books you don’t read anymore.
- Donate kids’ clothes they don’t fit in anymore and kids’ toys they don’t really play with.
- Pitch all the really junky kids’ toys that are just cluttering up the place for no reason.
Even if you just go through your house and pick 5-10 things a day, it will start to add up. And it is WORTH it!
* By the way, if you’re really interested in decluttering, Your Simple Home Handbook is my favorite book on the topic. It takes you room-by-room and step-by-step so it isn’t overwhelming, just super practical and encouraging.
6. Offer Yourself a Reward
Would a bribe help you clean the house? What motivates you?
Maybe you only allow yourself to watch your favorite show while you’re cleaning. Maybe you get everyone in the family to help with the promise of ice cream when you’re done. Maybe you decide you’ll buy new paint and curtains for your room once you get it completely cleaned out and decluttered.
Find the motivation that works best for you!
7. Invite People Over
And last but not least — want to get really motivated? Invite people over. Whether it’s just a few friends or a full-blown party, knowing that people are going to come over and see your house is pretty motivating!
Do you ever struggle to get motivated to clean? What helps you get motivated?
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