Do you feel like starting a cleaning routine would be nice but that cleaning routines are for…..people that are home all day, people without little kids, and/or people who have a traditional schedule, or for people that are super organized. Not for you. I totally get that and remember that feeling. I was teaching and working a second job when I decided that cleaning all day Saturday wasn’t working. Our little apartment, exhaustion, and piles of laundry reflected that it wasn’t working. What changed?  I started to re-think HOW I was approaching homekeeping. Instead of thinking of it as something I dreaded and a thief of my precious weekends, I decided that I needed to figure out a better way to keep our home clean all week long.

pictured: Glass Spray Bottle | Color Coded Cleaning Spray Bottle Bands | Aqua Bar Mop Towels

Twenty+ years ago, the Clean Mama Routine started to take shape. After tweaking it through different homes, jobs, and with kids of different ages and stages, I started to share it online in 2009. Now? Hundreds of thousands of families have found success with the Clean Mama Routine. My goal? To reach more homes and share how you CAN do the routine when you’re tired, exhausted, over-worked, and busy. Not sure how to start or where you can possibly find the time to make a bed let alone clean a bathroom?  You’ve come to the right place!

If you think you don’t have time for a cleaning routine, but you want a clean house and are frustrated with HOW to get there, you need to start small. Little daily habits that slowly form into a routine is surprisingly, what will get you there. Here are three simple ways to help you get started. Read through them and choose something that resonates with you. Try it and see how it feels. Do it the next day, and the next, tweak and make changes. Keep going and with a little effort and consistency, you’ll be the one with the clean house 🙂  Make sure you read all the way through for links to other helpful posts and for my new Guide to a Flexible Routine.


Too tired, overwhelmed, unmotivated? Choose ONE THING you can do. Instead of getting stuck in what you didn’t get done, think of what you DID get done. If you are too exhausted to even choose something, have your MVP pre-chosen. Just do that ONE THING. For me, it’s the Daily Task of WIPE COUNTERS.

pictured: Days of the Week Towels | Glass Spray Bottle | Premium Bar Mop Towels

If I’m feeling unmotivated or only have a small window of time that I can clean something, I set a timer for 10-15 minutes and get what I can get done, done. I don’t stress about the list, I do what I can. Have 10 minutes and a lot of clutter scattered through the house?  Grab a laundry basket and fill it with the stuff that’s out. Or see if you can do a couple Daily Tasks in that 10-15 minutes. Surprisingly, most cleaning tasks don’t take as long as we think they’ll take, it’s the putting them off that just makes them worse. This post has a whole list (and a free printable) of things you can do in about 5 minutes – keep it somewhere for those days when you have a couple minutes and a mess that you don’t want to deal with. If you have the Daily Tasks down and are ready to add the Weekly Tasks, you can set a timer for 10-15 minutes and get what you can get done for your Weekly Task.

This is a Daily Task, but just getting a load in the washer and going can make a big impact. Get a load of laundry started and if you want to, do the day’s Weekly Task while waiting for your laundry to finish washing. If you have a speed wash option, use it and race it to get the Weekly Task done and maybe a Daily Task too.

Regardless of if you’ve heard of the Clean Mama Routine, tried it in the past, maybe you’re doing aspects of it but need a little help getting fully on board. I took your feedback and comments and turned it into Clean Mama’s Guide to a Flexible Routine. It’s a whole guide designed to help you put it into place around YOUR schedule – I am so excited to share it with you!


The Guide to a Flexible Routine will show you how to implement Clean Mama’s simple and proven methods to clean your home with the least amount of time and effort. Struggling to come up with a cleaning routine that works with your busy or untraditional schedule? This packet is the tool you need to finally get a system in place in your home.

Looking for more?  Check out these posts!

A Manageable, Realistic Cleaning Routine for Any Schedule

Cleaning Routine Hacks When You Don’t Have Time to Clean