This post many contain affiliate links. I may earn a commission if you make a purchase from these links.
Have you ever awoken in the morning just to find a whirlwind of toys everywhere, dirty clothes strewn on the floor and yesterday’s dishes abandoned on the counter?
Maybe you were too tired the night before and just went to bed without another thought about all of those things. Or maybe you just didn’t know where to start and had no motivation to do it. And now seeing it all again in the morning makes it a daunting task that you still don’t feel like tackling.
Don’t fret, today is a new day and we are going to get things under control with just a few simple tasks you can do daily in order to keep the mess at bay. Waking up to a tidy home will transform how you feel in the morning. Instead of feeling stressed and unmotivated, you’ll wake up knowing that today is a fresh start without yesterday’s huge list hanging over your head!
Read below for the 4 things you can do daily that will help keep your home tidy and stress free!
Make that bed!
Once you’ve woken up and climbed out of bed, before you even leave the room, go straighten out your bed!
This will make such an impact, trust me. Get the bed looking tidy, that way whenever you come back into the room during the day you’ll see your neat and tidy bed and you’ll just feel good about it! Another plus is that when it’s time for bed later, you won’t need to make the bed, it will be ready for you to just climb right in and enjoy!
Bonus task: If yesterday’s clothes were left on the floor, pop them in the laundry basket now, so you you don’t have to see that messy pile on the floor all day! If you leave it there, you’re going to get dirty looks from it all day!
Keeping up with those dishes throughout the day!
Dirty dishes left out are one of my pet peeves. When I see a pile of dishes on the counter it completely brings down my mood. That pile starts to feel more like a mountain and you loose all motivation, assuming it’s going to take you call day to work your way through all of that!
Okay, so the bad news is, you DO need to wash all of those dishes first so that we can start with a clean slate for our new daily habits. But once you do that your new habits will keep it all under control so that things don’t get that bad again!
Here is what I recommend to do daily in order to keep the dish chaos at bay:
When you get up in the morning, go ahead and start that coffee maker or heat some water for tea if that’s what you normally do in the morning. AND while you’re waiting for it to be ready, put away any clean dishes from the dishwasher or dish rack. Now everything is away and ready for the day and it only took a few minutes. Enjoy your morning cup of sunshine!
Now throughout the day, as you use dishes, put them into the dishwasher right away after using them, that way they aren’t piling up on the counter causing stress. Make sure to let everyone else in the house know that this is going to be the new norm, and they need to put their dishes away too. Older kids shouldn’t have any problem doing this, although they may need to be reminded a few times before the habit sets in. If you see a stray dish left out, don’t panic! Just swiftly move it into the dishwasher and move on.
*For those without a dishwasher, you’ll have a bit more work to do, but trust me, taking care of those dishes right away will pay off later! You’ll need to wash your dishes right away after using them. Since you’ll be washing as you go, it should only take 5-10 mins each time, which is totally doable! If there is a pan that needs a little more attention, set it to soak in the sink for 20 minutes, and then come back to it. Easy peasy!
At the end of the day make sure all the dishes are in the dishwasher and then turn it on. It can wash while you sleep and then in the morning, just put them away quick and simple. And that brings us back to step 1.
*Again, for those without a dishwasher, you do have an extra step, but because we’ve been keeping up with the dishes throughout the day, it shouldn’t take long. Wash up those last few dishes of the day and set them in the rack to dry. You can put them away when you get up in the morning.
Tackle the laundry!
Okay, so I’ll be the first to admit that I detest doing the laundry. With a family of 5 it just seems to never end. For those of you with bigger families, I don’t even want to think about the amount of laundry you are faced with! But it’s okay, we can handle this problem too!
You’ll need to get the whole family on board with this step. The goal here is to make sure everyone puts dirty laundry directly into the laundry basket/hamper right away. None of that piling up on the floor stuff that I know we’ve all done because we just didn’t want to walk it over to the hamper. It might take a few reminders for kids, but if you can get this habit started then you’re one step closer to coming to peaceful terms with the laundry!
I’m going to assume that if you have at least 3 people in your family, you’ll probably have enough laundry to do at least a small load each day. And don’t forget to wash those kitchen and bath towels often too! If you make sure to do at least one small load each day (maybe more for larger families) then you won’t have a build up of laundry and it will become manageable.
If you’ve got a large pile looming over you, all your going to be thinking about is how long it’s going to take to wash, dry, sort and fold it all. But now that you’ll be doing small loads here and there, you’ll know it’s doable in a short amount of time, and their won’t be all that stress attached to it. Who knows, you may even start to enjoy those short folding sessions!
Now that that laundry is clean and folded, make sure it gets put away and not left out for later. Because we both know that if we leave it for later, it won’t get put away! Call the kids over, and enlist them to take their own clothes and put them away into the proper drawers (or shelf or closet, whatever your system may be). And now your done. No more dirty laundry to stare back at you all day!
Pick Up The Things!
So we’ve got the bed, dishes and laundry taken care of in manageable pieces, now it’s on to the “things” that are creating chaos. With 3 children, someone is always playing with one toy or another in my house. And if I don’t keep on top of them, they’ll move onto another toy without putting the previous one away. My 3 year old will often dump out the bag of blocks or the bucket of cars, play with them for 10 minutes, and then walk away…. *shaking my head right now* No fear, young children are great little cleaners when they have some direction!
If things are starting to look like a tornado blew through the toy box and spread it’s contents through your home, just enlist your children for a “5 minute tidy”. Just give them one specific task at a time, such as “please pick up the blocks and put them back in the bag”, “please put all the cars back in their bin”, “Put those books back on the shelf please”. Most kids will do this without much complaint if its just a quick pick up. Make sure to do this daily, and it will become the norm for them to do these “5 minute tidy ups”.
With the toys all picked up now, it’s up to you to make sure anything else that is laying around is tidy (think things like mail left out on the counter). With the little clutter areas looking neat and tidy, you’re won’t be letting things build up into a hopeless mess anymore. The key here, again, is small manageable chunks.
What should you take away from this list of tasks?
I’m sure you’ve caught on by now to my overall “secret sauce”, right? By breaking down those tasks into short bursts of work, we won’t feel like it’s going to be this all day cleaning event. Who wants to clean ALL DAY? Certainly not me. But 2 minutes here and 2 minutes there? And with the help our or family? Sure we can totally handle that! It’s the mindset of just doing a little here and there that will save us from the piling up of those seemingly never ending chores.
If we can shift our mindset and create these good habits now, things will only get easier from here on out. That stress of “all the things I need to clean today” will lift off of your shoulders and allow you to feel more peaceful and happy about your home. And by including your children you will be setting them up for good habits in their lives as well.