People often wonder how I have the time to clean, tidy, organize all the time. The secret is: I really don’t. My main solution has been living in a relatively small space, and minimizing my belongings, so that cleaning and organizing can be kept to a minimum. Below I will share my “secrets” for maintaining a home that looks fresh, clean, tidy, and organized with minimal effort.
The Foundation: Minimal Living
Your home has to have a good foundation in order to make cleaning and upkeep quick and easy. Translation: you must put the initial work in to decide what you actually use, care about, and need in your home. Even when our house has crumbs and dust bunnies on the floor, it still has the illusion of being tidy and clean because our spaces are so streamlined. The decluttering process takes time, but the payoff of creating a streamlined home is well worth the initial effort. The less stuff you own, the less you need to keep clean. Studies show that people who have invested the time to de-clutter their homes spend 50% less time cleaning!
Order + Organization
Once you have put in the work to minimize, you will have much less to clean and organize. That being said, you still need to have a “home” for all of your things and put them away when you’re done using them. Create simple, intuitive systems that make sense to you and are easy for your family, or partner, to adhere to. Example: We own a nice camera and some equipment that used to get tossed all over the house. It drove me crazy, and we could never find it when we needed it. My solution was to buy an oversized basket to store the camera and accessories and place it in a convenient place in our living room. Now all of us put the camera in the basket when we’re not using it and know where to find it whenever we need it. Simple, yet effective!
If you don’t have time to clean frequently, or the resources to hire a cleaning service, try my “quick fix” clean routine: Once every few weeks I’ll sweep the hardwood floors, vacuum the carpets and give the surfaces a wipe with an eco-friendly anti-bacterial wipe. If I have time, I’ll also wipe down the mirrors and throw some cleaning solution in the sink and toilet. The whole routine has never taken me more than thirty minutes and makes my house look and smell fresh and clean.
Additionally, we make the beds every morning and do the dishes right after we eat. I think of it like maintenance for a car. If you put in the minimal effort to routinely get your oil changed, tires checked etc. you can avoid the headache of major breakdowns and blowouts. If you pick up after yourself and put things away throughout the day, you never have to deal with a massive clean-up.