Not me of course.
I started my new non-negotiable task of picking up the floors in each bathroom every morning. I know that this is only a teeeeeny tiiiiny part of what needs to be done daily to keep bathrooms ship-shape, but I have to start somewhere. I am doing my best to build habits that will become “no big deal” so that when I add a new non-negotiable, I won’t get overwhelmed.
A friend once said something in a casual conversation that has reverberated in my head for years now. She is a neat freak, but was cleaning her house for a party. She casually mentioned that “You know, if your floors are clean, everyone thinks your house is clean.” I laughed like of course I knew that. But I didn’t. I think of that all the time. That is my reasoning behind this new daily task. It’s really a “duh” task. Something I should be doing every day anyway. But it’s because I don’t do these “duh” tasks daily that my house stays in chaos.
It really makes a big difference. Previously, I have frantically, and in fits of frustration, thrown stray clothes in the hamper. I have picked up the damp towels and stray toy. But now my focus is the floor being totally clear of stuff that doesn’t belong there. Somehow that’s different. It means that instead of stopping at the big stuff, I reached behind the potty and picked up the stray wad of t.p. Gross. I’m not going to ask how it got there. Normally, I would see that and totally stress about how disgusting my little boys’ bathroom is and how I need to completely scrub it down from top to bottom. And sometimes I would. But most of the time I wouldn’t because I didn’t have time to scrub it down on that particular day.
Today I just picked it up. And it looks so much better in there. Duh.
I did also wipe down the counter, sink and toilet. I’m going to try to do those things daily as well but they are not yet on the non-negotiable list, so I won’t beat myself up if I don’t.
Other things I’ve done today:
Cleaned and swept kitchen.
Ran a load of laundry.
Totally cleaned dining room (See my Tackle it Tuesday post coming up)
Cleaned one kid’s room.
This is a big cleaning week because we have family coming over for a birthday get-together on Saturday. Good motivation for me.
celina from canada says
again i know it's an old post..but wow the clean floors/clean house thing is soo true…
it's such a natural thing for my born organized sister in law to do…and me…a stumbling block..i guess i feel like i'll never be able to get it all done, so i do nothing…
hasn't been overly successful so far..lol
New reader here. Finding so very much that I can relate to! Of course I’m ready your blog backwards right now instead of doing my dishes. I’ve actually found that it helps to look around and see if there is anything I can pick up and throw away while I’m sitting on the toilet. And with 3 little kids, there usually is.
Ugh…reading, not ready.
Homeschool on the Croft says
You know…. I think you’re right (!). If the floor is clear, the house looks neat. Hmmm – that is so good to know (when you’re a person whose only hope is an ‘appearance’ of neat 😉
Love your tips. And your site 🙂
(Love that it doesn’t make me feel a *total* useless article!)
THE BEST TIP EVER!!! (Thanks for sharing <3)
This is great! You are such an inspiration. I have struggled with this all my life…I just found your site, looking for ways to get myself in gear…for the umpteenth time. I am so disorganized and as you were, I am pretty well-known as a huge slob. I just can’t seem to get it together! I am reading your blog backwards (which is actually forwards, in reality, LOL!)…it would help if you had a dated archive on your site! Kudos to you for motivating yourself and turning it into a profit (hopefully), and an inspiration to other domestically challenged beings in the area of cleaning and organizing. 🙂
There’s a calendar on the sidebar that should help!
I didn’t see that before!! LOL!! Thanks, Nony! 🙂
Same comments as everyone else…I know this is a really old post, but I am reading backwards….I am loving your posts, I usually get things cleaned, but then blink and they are all messy again. I love the idea that if the floors are cleaned then people think your house is cleaned. I cleaned my living room today. Picked every thing up, wiped off all the surfaces, even dusted. It still looks dirty… I did not vacuum the floor. Though it does look better as I cleaned the piles up in the floor.
New recovering slob here from Texas. I just started reading your blog too (found it through a search for decluttering on YouTube). I am constantly battling clutter too, and your words speak so familiar to me. Great tip about the clean floors. Never thought about it that way, but it always irritated me to have messy and dirty floors, which is a constant battle with two dogs tracking dirt and shedding constantly and a toddler who likes to throw toys everywhere. I try to sweep and mop every Saturday, but I know it still is not enough.
I’ve also had great advice reverberating though my head from my neat freak college roommate from over 14 years ago. I asked her, how do you always keep your desk so neat? She said, “I clean it every 5 minutes.” Not sure if I’ll ever get to the point of cleaning every 5 min, but I can sure try.
Thanks for letting us read your journey. I look forward to reading all your posts and I will be decluttering right along with you.
Colleen F says
I agree with your friend about the floors. I just walked into my kitchen and noticed my son and his friends had tracked goodness knows what in there last night, and it makes everything look doubly filthy. I love when my floors are clean. In fact, if the floors are clean, dishes done, and beds made, I feel ahead of the game.
It’s true…make the bed, sweep the floor and keep the countertops decluttered, and the house will “look clean”. 😉
yes. just yes.
Tammy P. says
So I’ve listened to the first 12 chapters of your audio book and read up to here on the blog (from the beginning that is, not from the end… So like 21 days worth I guess.
And today I washed my dishes. And cleared my kitchen counter (it’s a total of like 100cm by 70cm and then another 70cm by 70cm…really tiny…) but I did it. And I dried my dishes and put them away and washed the dishes from dinner!
And in the morning I’m going to put them away!
And hopefully I’m going to start doing the dishes and wiping down the counter every night before I go to bed…
This is the first time in my life I’ve actually felt like there is ainute chance I might actually get my house in order, and not just give up after a week.
It took me ages to get the dishes done before dinner, but after dinner (we already eat on plastics during the week because no dishwasher and we’re lazy) it was just finishing off the last few things and putting them to dry on the rack…
So thank you for inspiring me to actually get started, and not just put it off yet again.
When I got home from work (I’ve been listening to the audio book in the car), I didn’t procrastinate; I immediately went to the kitchen and started clearing the dish rack so I could get started on dishes!