Cleaning Tips for the Overwhelmed

Cleaning Tips for the Overwhelmed

Keeping up with the housework can feel like an endless battle, especially when you’re juggling the needs of others, your environmental impact and possibly dealing with mental health issues.

This blog is predominantly for parents (be they of humans or pets) but will suit anyone who struggles with cleaning.  If you're feeling overwhelmed, know that you're not alone! Here are some practical tips to help you navigate through those moments when the housework seems like it’s getting the best of you.

It’s okay to not have it all together

First and foremost, give yourself some grace. Accept that Pinterest clean isn’t for everyone – in fact it’s not realistic for the majority - and that’s totally okay. The cleaning and chores will keep coming, but you don’t have to conquer them all at once. And while we’re on that, slipping on eco perfection while your struggling is also OK. Just do your best and when you can, pick up again where you left off.

Revamp your schedule

Embrace the concept of "opening" and "closing" duties, inspired by KC Davies, author of "How to Keep House While Drowning." Think of your daily tasks as opening duties, essential for getting the day started, and closing duties, aimed at making your mornings smoother – much like a café or retail business does.

Create morning and evening duties tailored to your needs and energy levels. On days when you're feeling particularly overwhelmed, simplify your duties to focus on the absolute essentials. Examples of daily and weekly duties are at the bottom of the page.

Clutter and mess - What to do when dealing with a clutter disaster.

When you find it hard to get started on an overwhelming space committing to spending just 5 minutes on that space can get you started. Set a timer, and just do 5 minutes, you’ll be amazed how often you go past the first 5 minutes once you get in the groove. Also, wear shoes, I don’t know what it is, but wearing shoes helps!

When going through items I steer clear of the Marie Kondo “does this item bring me joy” instead I think…”Do I want to continue having to manage this item.” Because everything in your home needs a place and commands your attention in one way or another. Ask yourself “Is this item something that I want to manage going forward?”

Steps to declutter a room
1. Collect all the rubbish – go around the room with a bag and throw out any rubbish
2. Find anything that doesn’t belong and put it into piles. Kids room, kitchen, my room, laundry etc.
3. Put the items from step 2 into the rooms they belong in.
4. If I still have the energy then I continue to steps 5 and 6. If not. Well, done, pat yourself on the back, you’ve done great.
5. Collect anything that you no longer want to manage in your home. Put it into 2 piles. 1) Throw and 2) Donate.
6. Put the donate items into your car and the rubbish into the bin. Woohoo!!

Cleaning podcasts

While not everyone's idea of podcasts offer cleaning motivation or guide you through cleaning routines and honestly they are actually great. Whether it’s listening to people clean while you clean along, or finding motivation through uplifting conversations, these podcasts can help get you started and stay on task.

Recommended podcasts
• Clean with Me
• Clutterbug

Let us know if you have any fav's!

Strategically place cleaning supplies

Make cleaning more accessible by placing cleaning spray and cloths in strategic locations throughout your home, such as the bathroom sink, laundry and kitchen bench so you clean on the go. Consider using reusable cloths that you can wash weekly - but if the idea of extra items to wash is overwhelming just use compostable disposable ones for a while.

Additionally, position bins conveniently in high-traffic areas and incorporate emptying them into your weekly routine, this will lessen rubbish around the home and make life that bit easier.

Embrace good enough

Let go of the pressure for perfection. Recognise that sometimes, good enough is indeed good enough. Focus on maintaining a clean and functional living environment rather than striving for unattainable perfection.
With this in mind new mum’s: Baby /little kid clothes do not need to be folded. And, babies do not care if the house is a mess. Just keep it sanitary, wash bottles, clean high chairs etc and ignore the rest.

An example of morning duties:
• Empty Dishwasher
• Give the bathrooms a wipe down
• Make coffee
• Make Breakfast / Have Breakfast / Put breakfast dishes in the dishwasher
• Do Make-up and Hair
• Get kids ready
• Travel to school / work.
Or a simple morning duties day:
• Make coffee
• Feed kids
• Get kids ready
• Travel to school / work - don’t forget the coffee.

An example of evening/ closing duties:
• Stack dishwasher
• Put dishwasher on
• Do small load of laundry
• Wipe kitchen down
• Make lunches
• Set your clothes out for next day
• Ensure kids clothes are ready for next day
• Put clothes out to dry.
A simple closing duties evening:
• Set your clothes out for next day
• Ensure kids clothes are ready for next day.

An example of a weekly routine
• Vacuum and mop all floors
• Clean showers
• Wash towels and cleaning cloths
• Change sheets / wash sheets
• Meal prep
• Food shopping
An example of a simple week
• Vacuum main traffic areas
• Wash towels
• Change pillowcases
• Do click and collect at supermarket.
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