I often find it a little bit ironic that some of the most popular posts here at Live Renewed are posts about cleaning. I don’t know if I’m the best person to offer cleaning advice because it’s something I struggle with myself! I wrote those posts as encouragement and motivation as much for myself as I did for you!
But, there’s something about these posts that have really resonated with a lot of people; maybe because you don’t like cleaning either and have a hard time keeping up with your house like I do. Solidarity sisters! (and maybe some brothers too?)
So for all of us who hate to clean but realize it’s kind of an important thing for our families, here are some of my favorite ways to give myself a little kick in the pants and motivate myself to clean when what I really want to do is curl up on the couch with a good book.
7 Ways to Motivate Yourself to Clean
Open Up the Curtains/Blinds
I’ve recently started a routine of “waking up” the house every morning. Once the sun is rising and it’s becoming light outside, I go around and open up all of the curtains and blinds to let the natural light into the house.
This has a double impact for me.
- The house seems cleaner when it is bright and light-filled! It’s like opening the windows and letting the sunlight in tricks your eyes to make things look cleaner overall.
- But, on the other hand, the light and brightness makes it harder to ignore the places that are cluttered, messy, and dirty. And makes you want to actually do something about it!
Clear Off Your Table
Sometimes when I look over the house and it’s such a mess that it feels so overwhelming, I’m unsure where to even start. If this is the case, the dining room table is very likely to be covered with stuff – dishes from breakfast, lunch, or snacks, school papers and mail, toys, things that need to be put away in other parts of the house, and more.
More than anything else I’ve found, taking 5 minutes to clean and wipe off the table can instantly help me to feel better, less overwhelmed about the house, and motivated to tackle more of the mess. It also means dinner time will go more smoothly because I won’t have to be clearing off the table while also trying to cook.
Make Your Bed
In the same way that clearing off the dining table provides an instant boost, making your bed can have the same effect in your bedroom. It helps the room to look significantly better and encourages me to take just a few extra minutes to clear off my bedside table and pick up any dirty laundry littering the floor.
Turn On Your Favorite Dance Music
I don’t know about you, but I personally love to dance! Ever since I was young, I have loved to turn on music with a great beat and just dance around. So, when I need some motivation or a little kick in the rear to get myself up and moving, I will turn on Pandora or Spotify to an upbeat, dancy station. I literally cannot sit still, so I get up and dance around while cleaning up at the same time. My neighbors must find this quite amusing!
It’s so much more fun to clean this way! I can usually motivate my kids to get in on the cleaning up dance party too; although they often spend a little more time dancing than cleaning! I guess they take after their mama, they love to dance too! If you’re a fan of current and past pop music then check out my Cleanin’ Time playlist on Spotify, I bet it will get you moving!
Set a Timer
If I have a limited amount of time, or if I’m trying to get something done quickly, I will sometimes set a timer and try to beat the clock for the chore I’m doing. I’ll tell myself I can take a break when the timer goes off if I’ve finished the job, but often by that point I’m motivated enough to just keep on cleaning! This could also be a good option for motivating you if dancing is not really your thing.
Okay, so I have to be careful with this one, because a lot of times decluttering can end up making even more of a mess and I can get super distracted and off task if I tell myself that I’m just going to declutter this drawer or shelf “really quick” before I dive into cleaning. In my world, decluttering is never “really quick”!
But, here’s how this works: if you make the effort to work on some decluttering projects around your house you will be even more motivated to keep your space tidy. Then when it’s time to clean it will be easier and go more quickly because you won’t have a bunch of junk in your way.
We’ve found this to be really true in our bedroom and our kids’ bedroom where we’ve recently decluttered and reorganized our stuff. It is now quick and painless to keep our rooms from getting messy. When it’s time to do the vacuuming and dusting we don’t have to do a bunch of picking up first, so it only takes a few minutes to keep our rooms tidy and clean.
Invite People Over
My friend and I were talking/complaining about keeping up with our messy houses at the gym the other morning, and a sweet little nun was standing near us. She said, “You know what they say, If you come to see my house, make an appointment, if you come to see me, come anytime!” We all laughed at the truth of those words.
It is true that family and friends really shouldn’t care what our house looks like, but for me one of the biggest motivators to get things cleaned up is to invite people over to our house. At the same time, there’s also something to be said for letting your friends and family see your house in it’s authentic state, so don’t go cleaning crazy and make people believe that your house is always spotless (unless it really truly is!)
Let’s be honest though, most of us do at least a little cleaning up before having people over. It’s the things like clearing off that corner of the kitchen counter that always seems to collect stuff, dusting the blinds or cleaning the mirrors, or wiping crayon marks off the walls that honestly just don’t always get done unless I know people are coming to our house. At this point in my life, if that’s what it takes to motivate me to get those things done, I’m okay with that.
We all want to keep a clean and tidy house. For some of us, this is easier said than done, but it does have to get done! So if your house could use a little pick me up and so could you, stop reading this post, choose one of these tips, and get started right now! Your home and your family will thank you!
Are you overwhelmed by the mess in your home? Check out 28 Days to Hope for Your Home! I have used this book and found it to be EXACTLY what I needed to help me whip my house into shape!