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  • Writer's pictureEmma Neate

Do you have a cleaning schedule?

Updated: Nov 19, 2018

I do. But for ages I didn't. It has been a game-changer for me.

Being a house person is very different from being an office worker. In an office, people might give you tasks to do, which you can complete and receive acknowledgement for. But at home the bathroom will not present itself to you to be cleaned. Instead, it looks at you in a sad, grubby kind of way and seems to whisper 'clean me, you know you ought to'. In the slots of time between a small person needing my attention, I used to wander about the house, seeing jobs that needed doing, not knowing which one to start, starting some of them, but completing none, before being called away to play trains. The cycle would repeat throughout the day, and whilst I appeared to be engaging with my kids on the surface, my mind was actually distracted by the jobs and mess around me.

It dawned on me that the lack of structure in the day of a house person can actually be a massive hindrance. Also, the decision making process about whether to clean the bathroom or not tends to gnaw on your consciousness, like an app which is running in the background, using memory, but with no positive outcome. So I decided to impose my own structure. I give you my cleaning schedule:

It is also my meal-planner and everything-else-planner. On Sunday nights I print it off and fill in any up-coming playdates, appointments from our shared google calendar. The cleaning jobs to be completed each day are at the bottom in pink.

Having a cleaning schedule has been a game-changer for me because it eliminates the decision making process and gives me a focus. I know that when Monday morning comes, I will take the draining rack off the draining board, spray the whole sink and surrounds with Viakal, leave it to work for ten minutes, before wiping and buffing it. I don't question it, I don't put it off. It takes up far less headspace, and it improves my quality of life, because I get to wash up at a clean sink instead of a dirty one. Here are some other reasons why having a cleaning schedule works for me:

- I can invite friends round on the spur of the moment, knowing that, whilst my home may not be spotless, it shouldn't be embarrassingly dirty because most of it has been cleaned in the last week

- On the rare occasions when I have a spare five minutes I can look at the list and tick off something quick like polishing the mirrors, and this prevents me from reaching for my phone and wasting 5 minutes on social media instead

- I can cross the tasks off the list, and it feels good to have actually achieved something, even if that something is just cleaning the loos

- These jobs really don't take long when you do them each week. Having a schedule means they don't get left to build up into mammoth tasks

My schedule looks rather plain, but if you do a google image search for 'cleaning schedule' you can find some pretty ones which are free to download. I recently discovered The Organised Mum Method (TOMM) on instagram and I am loving her cleaning schedules and meal plans, which are all free to download, here:

Domestic bliss awaits!

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