I don’t know about you, but I’m always shocked by how quickly the house can get messy. Seemingly out of nowhere, we can wind up with a pile of dirty dishes, toothpaste splatters all over the bathroom sink and mirror, and paperwork everywhere. After years of this, I finally figured out that if I just did some easy and quick tidying tasks every day, I didn’t ever have to spend an entire afternoon cleaning the house.
I think most of us mistakenly think that we will have more time in the future. We tend to put off household tasks until that hypothetical future day when we will have more time. When it comes to keeping the house tidy, simple consistent cleaning routines are key, and we can enjoy living in an orderly home on a daily basis.
Here are 6 things you can do every day to keep your house clean.
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6 Simple Ways to Keep Your Home Tidy ALL the Time
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1. Run your dishwasher every night and empty it every morning
Whether it’s full or not, get in the habit of running the dishwasher and emptying it every day. This way you can load every dirty dish into the emptied dishwasher throughout the day as you use them, instead of filling your sink. Dishes can pile up so quickly, and really make your kitchen look messy! I used to wait until my dishwasher was chock full before running it, and I’d take forever before I unloaded it.
If you have a small family or live alone, you could stretch this out to every other day or so of course. The idea is to be proactive, and to have a place for the dirty dishes to go right away. You’ll be surprised how little time it actually takes, especially when you stay on top of it. You can quickly unload a dishwasher in less than 5 minutes, and you’ll just be placing your dirty dishes in it instead of the sink, so no added time there.
Approximate time needed: 5 minutes
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2. Process your mail as soon as you bring it in
Paper clutter is a huge source of messiness in many homes. As soon as you bring the mail in, sort through it. If you still get paper bills in the mail, open them and place in a designated place to be paid when ready. For private and sensitive information you could either shred it, or I use this to hide personal information. We have a basket in our pantry that collects all the junk mail and ads, and I just empty it into the paper recycling bin in a nearby church parking lot when it gets full.
True story: Years ago, I used to be so bad at processing our mail that our energy company actually came out and turned off our electricity because we were behind on our payments. The bills were buried in various stacks of random mail. That solved my mail-opening procrastination. The bills exist whether we actually open them or not, and it’s just better to know what they are. Ignorance is not bliss!
Approximate time needed: 4 minutes
3. Wash and put away one load of laundry every day
In our small household, I don’t quite need to do a load every day, but almost. Granted, I’m not a perfectionist when it comes to sorting laundry and doing all sorts of different loads. But one day I’ll do my laundry, another day my husband’s, another our towels, then our sheets, etc. This way all day Sunday isn’t spent doing laundry. Ugh, that sounds awful!
The lovely thing about washing machines and dryers is that they do almost all the work for us. I usually throw a load in the washer first thing in the morning, then later I put it in the dryer, and then later still I quickly fold it and put it away.
Approximate time needed: 10 minutes
Related: Need some inspiration? Check out these 12 cleaning motivation tricks.
4. Make your bed
I incorporated making my bed into my getting ready routine a couple years ago. Before starting my makeup, I apply my No. 7 serum and eye gel (love that stuff!) I like to give that a minute to soak into my skin, so while it’s soaking in, I make my bed. I’d be surprised if it even takes me a full minute to make my bed. I don’t aim for absolute perfection, I just pull up the covers as smoothly (and quickly) as I can, and arrange the pillows. It’s an instant facelift for the bedroom.
Approximate time needed: 1 minute
5. Tidy and wipe down the countertops
Since you already did your dishes and processed your mail, this should hardly take any time at all. I love using disinfecting wipes (I get mine at Dollar Tree) for wiping down the countertops. A spray bottle with a vinegar and water mixture and a washcloth or paper towel work just as well. Once you’re in the habit of doing this in the kitchen, add cleaning your bathroom counters to your routine as well.
Approximate time needed: 3 minutes
6. Clean one small area
What you clean will change each time, but the idea is to do one extra cleaning task each day. The task could be quickly dusting, cleaning the shower, Swiffering the kitchen and dining room, or basically whatever looks dirty on that particular day. By taking care of one chore at a time, you’ll hopefully never feel buried by all your impending housework.
Approximate time needed: 7 minutes
There you have it, a system you can use to keep your home tidy in under 30 minutes per day. And those 30 minutes are spread out over the whole day, so it might not even feel like any extra time at all. If it seems overwhelming to start doing all these things at once, just implement one at a time. For a week, work on running and emptying the dishwasher daily. You’ll be used to doing it after a week and you can move on to dealing with your paperwork and mail. And so on. I promise you, you got this!
Want more cleaning inspiration? Please check out my Cleaning Hacks Pinterest board!
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