Somedays (to be honest, most days), I find myself feeling like I am working and taking care of kids all day at home and then will walk through the house and feel like nothing has been accomplished. There are toys out (again), the floor is dirty, the dishes are still not done, the entry way isn’t tidy. It is all of these little things that build up to make my house feel messy and unwelcoming and myself overwhelmed. I look around and feel defeated, unsure of where to start and if there is any point in trying if it is just going to get messy again.
I have learned that these things can seem like too much to tackle, but in reality, it only takes a matter of minutes to get everything back in order with a little effort. So these are my quick hacks to getting my house tidied up in 20 minutes when it seems out of control.
Don’t Mop the Floors!
That’s right, you heard me! I don’t even own a mop, and our flooring is almost completely tile in our home. I keep rags in a basket in the kitchen and a spray bottle with a 1:1 ratio of vinegar and water filled under the sink. I grab it and spray down the floor, then just put a rag under my foot (or one under each) and do a quick back and forth skate across the kitchen. I get a little bit of a workout (ha!) and the kids even enjoy helping out from time to time. I have young kids at home, so sometimes I do this a 2-3 times a day, and this simple quick clean up helps me feel like my house is so much cleaner throughout the day!
Sweep Your Area Rugs
Now, vacuuming doesn’t have to take long and I try to vacuum every other day, but I usually have to sweep up my kitchen anyway, so I just quickly run over to my area rugs and sweep up the crumbs and lint and put them in the garbage inbetween vacuuming. This means putting in just a little bit less effort for a quick tidy and cleaner floor.
Don’t Buy Lots of Different Cleaners
Not only will it be better for your health, but you can clean many things in your home with simple homemade solutions. White vinegar is a MUST to have on hand, as you can clean almost everything from your sink, to the floors and bathrooms with it. Invest in some good spray bottles and have rags on hand to keep your house in good shape. If you like scent, look into some essential oils or lemon juice to add to your spray bottle.
Give EVERYTHING a Specific Home
This may take a little more work in the beginning, but once everything has a specified home, cleaning takes so much less time and everyone can help put things away easier. Schoolwork, mail, toys, sports gear, purses, keys – EVERYTHING. Keeping a basket by the stairs can help too, if you are good about taking it up and emptying it out once a day so it doesn’t just become a “junk” basket.
If It Takes Less Than 2 Minutes, Do It RIGHT AWAY
Seriously. If it takes less than 2 minutes, do it right away. Need to file that important letter in the file box in the office upstairs? Run and do it! Yes, you might feel tired and want to just set it by the stairs, but the peace of mind and jolt of energy you will receive from getting the task done right away IS worth it. Sometimes it takes a bit of a pep talk, but when you just decide to put in the extra effort, you realize you can get so much more done each day and have less weighing on your mind.
One thing I read as a young girl was a simple saying, “redeem the time”. I think of this often when I am waiting for something and just want to check out on my phone – what could I be doing instead to save the wasted time? Downtime is important and we all need rest, but often we can waste valuable time and then wonder where the went.
Thanks for reading, what are some of your favorite cleaning hacks and tips? I would love to hear about them in the comments below!
(p.s. Check back this Friday for FREEBIE FRIDAY and download my FREE Cleaning Checklist! )