This quote got me thinking about what lessons have I learned since becoming a busy mom. What has impacted the daily grind, in a postitive way, so that I can enjoy more and stress less? I came up with these Cleaning Habits to START or STOP that have made a big difference.
START scheduling a day for your least favorite chore(s)
Wondering WHY this is a good idea? Because our natural inclination is to procrastinate in areas that bring us the least amount of enjoyment. When we procrastinate on things we know need to be done, we feel pressure and unease, so we avoid them even more and end up in a never-ending cycle of misery. However, when you have a set day to complete these spiritless jobs, you are free to enjoy the days they are not scheduled.
So pick a day to knock out ALL your LAUNDRY, another to clean ALL your BATHROOMS, another to VACCUUM/MOP and WRITE IT DOWN!! (Those are my least favorite chores, but schedule yours accordingly.) Then, crank up the tunes and start dancing with that mop every Sunday so can you dance withOUT it Monday-Saturday guilt free!
STOP running the dishwasher before you go to bed!
It seems logical to fill up the dishwasher with dirty dinner dishes and then run it while you are asleep. Unfortunately, when you wake up, you are faced with a classic dish dilema. Empty it right away? OR let the breakfast dishes pile up in the sink (and possibly the lunch dishes because that is just reality)?
Instead, run the dishwash after lunchtime and empty it while dinner is in the oven. Use clean dishes to set the dinner table so there is less to put away. It’s now ready for the dinner dishes AND there is room for breakfast and lunch dishes too. No more dishes piling up in your sink!!
START a 5 min PICK UP before bedtime.
Personally, the BEST of the cleaning habits to START is the 5 min PICK UP! Set a timer and have everyone run around picking up everything that belongs to them that needs to be put away. Anything that gets left out ends up in the BIN OF NO RETURN – a box/crate/basket where items stay until the offending party does an EXTRA chore chosen by mom!
(This includes school books, bags and homework for my kids!)
Tough Love = Lesson Learned
STOP doing things that can be left undone!
I prefer having my bed made when I climb into it at night. Seeing it made bed when I walk in and out of my bedroom throughout the day gives me a sense of tranquility. And despite the toy wreckage on the floor, I still get a “tidy feeling” when I see my kids’ beds made.
However, I HATE FIGHTING THIS BATTLE EVERY MORNING WITH MY 5 OFFSPRING. (Ok, 4 offspring…my 3 year old is off the hook for this one.) So I decided to LET.IT.GO. (If you started singing like Elsa in your head, you are my kind of mom!) Making my own bed is easy, but fussing at my children to make their beds, OR because they did not make their beds is NOT WORTH THE STRESS! What tasks are you determined to have done that can otherwise be left undone without major harm or disorder?
I only have a few more months until my 4th child heads off to Kindergarten and I will only have 1 kido left at home. I admit, I look forward to that and dread it too. The quote I started with really rings true.
I determined to make the most out of those long days so, though the years be short, they are sweet.
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