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I am not a clean freak, but I have friends who are. I love observing my clean freak friends because I discover they have certain habits that can help non-clean freaks like myself keep our homes tidy in less time and with less effort.
One thing I have observed is that my neat and tidy friends don’t tend to have set cleaning routines and yet their homes are sparking clean. How do they manage that?
It is because they clean all day, but they don’t. Sounds confusing–yet it is really pretty simple. You see clean freaks clean in those little moments that us messies tend to mismanage time-wise.
How To Keep Your Home Tidy In Less Time
Step 1: Discover Your Little Moments
What parts of your day are you just basically standing around waiting?
-Waiting for your teenager to finish gathering all their stuff so that you can drive them to their after school events.
-Waiting for your husband to find his keys and wallet so you can leave on your date.
-Waiting for the hamburger to fry a bit so you can turn it over and fry it a bit more.
-Waiting for the coffee to brew
You get the idea; those little moments that are often just wasted standing around.
Step 2: Discover What Chores Fit In those Little Moments
The key here is to know just how long chores really take. For the next week or so use the timer on your smartphone to time how long it takes you to:
-scrub a toilet
-wipe down the kitchen counters
-sweep up the entrance floor
-pick up the shoes in the mudroom
-pick up toys in the family room
-clear off the kitchen table
-attack the clutter hot-spots of your home
Essentially you should time every chore and then make a list of those that take 5 minutes or less to complete.
Now, next time you are stuck waiting look at your list of 5 minute or less chores and tackle a few.
At first I would suggest placing a typed list of them on your fridge with the time it takes to do each one and cross them off as you go, but eventually you should be able to just know what area is in need of attacking next and attack it. Whatever suits your personality type best.
Within just a few days of doing this myself I discovered that our home was much tidier come cleaning day. In fact, within a few weeks I really only needed to devote 1 to 2 hours a week to clean the things I wasn’t able to get to in my tiny moments.
I also noticed I didn’t panic as much when someone dropped by unexpected because the house started being generally tidy.
If you want to spend even less time cleaning, delegate some of the longer chores to other family members. After all–a family that makes a mess together should clean it up together.
Bonus Tip: Make Sure You Always Have Cleaners On Hand
Nothing is more frustrating than actually having the time and desire to clean only to discover you are out of cleaner, which is why I really like Grove Collaborative. They bring natural cleaners at competitive prices to your doorstep when you want them. New members get $10 off their first order when they use my referral link (these words in blue).
Want more ideas on how to keep a home clean in less time?