February 24, 2021
Cleaning Routine Hacks When You Don’t Have Time to Clean
If you’re thinking you might want to try a cleaning routine or if you’re struggling to figure out how to incorporate one into your weekly schedule, you might need a couple hacks or tricks to help you get started. The Clean Mama Routine is designed to be completed in minutes a day. It’s simple, takes the guesswork out of what to clean and when to clean it. If you feel like you don’t have time to clean, but want a clean home, I’m happy to help and am here with all my best tips and tricks. If you haven’t read it, this post, A Manageable, Realistic Cleaning Routine for Any Schedule, will be helpful to read first. Once you’re read that, read on and see what will be helpful for you.
If you are struggling to integrate a cleaning routine in your schedule, check out my new kit – Clean Mama’s Guide to a Flexible Routine. It’s a fresh approach to implementing the Clean Mama Routine, complete with tweaks and suggestions for making it work!
START WITH THE DAILY TASKS
I say it all the time and I’ll repeat it again. Start with the Daily Tasks. These five tasks are essential to the Clean Mama Routine and the secret to getting started with your clean home! The Daily Tasks can happen in any order that works for you, I like to make beds first and get a load of laundry started first thing in the morning and the other tasks take place throughout the day, taking just a couple minutes each to complete.
DON’T LET LAUNDRY GET YOU DOWN – Do a load a day!
HOW TO MAKE THIS WORK FOR YOU:
If you’re skeptical or not sure where to start, here are a couple ideas to make this work for you home.
- Collect all the laundry in the house at the end of the day or just have one hamper in the laundry room and wash what’s in that daily. With three kids we easily have a load of laundry every day, some days there are multiple loads. (This is not the method I use, but a lot of people use this method!)
- Don’t separate the kids’ clothes into whites and darks, just toss it all in on cold. I’ve never had any issues with color transfer with this method. The two big kids fold their own clothes and put them away – this is extremely helpful! Use the summer to teach your kids how to do their own laundry.
- For my husband and myself I do separate clothes (whites, darks, workout wear) and we each have our own hamper so our clothes are washed separately. We both work out quite a bit so I usually have a load of workout clothes for each of us weekly too.
- If you work outside of the home, set your washer to start an hour or so before you get up in the morning. Once you get up, toss it in the dryer and fold before leaving or when you get home.
- Don’t have enough laundry for a load a day? Try doing a load every other day or every third day.
Go here for a free Laundry Schedule printable.
YOU NEED TO SPLIT UP THE CLEANING TASKS
If you want to do a cleaning routine but know you have snippets in the day to get things done (before work, after work, nap time, etc.), here are my best tips. I do most of these things because I am a clean a little bit as I go person. I actually find this to be the best for me from a productivity and a getting things done standpoint. Don’t underestimate those 5 and 10 minute bursts of cleaning energy! See more about the Weekly Tasks here.
- Vacuuming and floor washing can be a hang-up – they’re time consuming on their own and with the Clean Mama Routine we do them on subsequent days. Here are a couple ways to split them up: I vacuum late in the day on Wednesday and wash the floors early on Thursday morning. Split up half of your house one day and vacuum and wash the floors in one half one day and the other half the next.
- Bathrooms can feel overwhelming. With the Clean Mama Routine we clean bathrooms on Mondays – get it out of the way and get on with the week! We save floors for Wednesday and Thursday to make it even easier. If you feel like bathrooms are a struggle, set a timer and follow my simple Monday is Bathrooms Day Routine.
- Bathroom Speed Clean – If you’ve struggled with cleaning your bathroom, use my method to get that chore down to 15 minutes. You can go here to see the entire method and grab a free printable to walk your through it.
- Pair tasks together – I talk about this at length in my latest book, Clean Mama’s Guide to a Peaceful Home. When you pair a ‘happy task’ with a ‘pain point’ it’s easier to get things done. I unload the dishwasher while brewing coffee – this makes me move more quickly and gets this task out of the way.
- Simplify your cleaning supplies – less is more with a lot of things but this is definitely true with cleaning supplies. You can make your own cleaning supplies with just a handful of safe ingredients. You won’t have to worry about what’s in your cleaners and you’ll have the ingredients you need on hand. Get started with this post.
YOU’RE OVERWHELMED WITH A TO DO LIST – JUST DO ONE THING
If you’ve heard of choosing three things in a day and would be happy to just get ONE THING accomplished, this is a perfect start for you! Here are a couple mindset shifts to help you get started.
- My personal favorite, ‘What ONE thing would make my tomorrow self feel better?’
- What ONE cleaning task can I do today, will make a difference in our home?
- What ONE organizing task can I do today, will make a difference in our home?
- Is there something I can reward myself with that might motivate me to do ONE thing?
- What ONE task can I do in the 5 minutes I have? I have a free printable with tasks you can do in 5 minutes if you need help getting started.
- Ask yourself, ‘If I can do just one thing today, what will it be?’
- Or how about this, ‘What’s the one thing I HAVE to get done today?’
- Clear and clean just ONE surface. Here’s how!
STRUGGLING WITH MOTIVATION? HERE ARE SOME TIPS FOR THAT!
- Start in the worst area first and keep going with that momentum. This is why I clean bathrooms on Mondays. If this mindset doesn’t work for you, start with something easy first!
- Choose cleaning supplies that you enjoy using. Color coordinate or just choose supplies you like the look of – I find that having cute supplies make cleaning more fun!
- Don’t put it off – get it over with and get on with your day.
- Listen to a podcast, audiobook, or your favorite music – think of it as an escape.
- Call someone and chat while you’re cleaning. Chances are you’ll enjoy the conversation more than you realize that you’re cleaning.
- Make it a game – set a timer and race yourself.
- Invite someone over – you will probably get more done in a shorter period of time.
- Reward yourself with something that motivates you when you accomplish your goal.
- Be consistent. If you decide that it’s helpful to do a quick clean up before rest time or nap time every day, take the 5-10 minutes that it takes to do that little clean up. Being consistent helps to build habits and it helps to make it easier to clean up when you’re doing it regularly.
- Write it down. If you feel like you get to the end of the day and you didn’t get anything accomplished, start checking things off a list. I use my HOMEKEEPING PLANNER and love being able to reference it all year long.
- Don’t sweat the small stuff. It’s trite and overstated but really, it’s so true. So what if you have to order pizza because everything went south. Didn’t do the laundry every day this week? No big deal! This is why I built Fridays as a Catch-All Day into my routine. A grace day built into a routine that has room for LIFE. It’s refreshingly simple – just use the next day to start over, or the next week – there’s always room for the unexpected.
Ready to give it a try? Start with these 3 free printables – you’ll find them at the top of the Free Printables page you’ll find the Calendar of the Month, a how-to guide and tips and tricks for incorporating the Clean Mama Routine.
find these and all my free printables here
Ready to get started?
Check out the links below – I share daily reminders on social media, follow along!
Start Here page – this page will help you get started!
Read my latest book – Clean Mama’s Guide to a Peaceful Home
Grab the Homekeeping Planner
Join my subscription, Homekeeping Society
Follow Clean Mama on Instagram
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Cleaning Pro Says
I’m 100% on board with this! While professionally I’m very methodical and organized to a tee, my at-home life is often in disarray simply because I don’t have the time. For me, I developed a “5-minute rule”- If I see something on the ground; there is dirty laundry to put in the hamper; if the counters are messy, etc.; if it takes less than 5 minutes to take care of the task, I simply do it! It literally has changed my life and with regards to organization and being neat- It makes the biggest difference! Great article!
Rachel Michaels Says
These tips hit me the right way today! Thank you for your positivity and flexibility in your approaches. I have always appreciated your free printables (even though I struggle with following them perfectly!).
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