I used to wait until all the dishes and pots and pans in the house were dirty before I washed the dishes.
I hated dishes. Almost as much as I hated doing laundry.
That actually feels weird to say, because now I don’t hate either of those tasks.
When I think back all those years ago to when I was completely overwhelmed with just daily maintenance stuff. I would hang out with my friend Suzanne, Suzanne is one of those people that just naturally keeps a neat house.
She has plenty of things, she has lots of knickknacks and cute decorations, she is definitely NOT a minimalist, and every time I sit in her home I tease her about her “Simplify” sign that sits on a little shelf with a bunch of other cute little things sitting around it.
But Suzanne’s house has always been beautiful.
And I didn’t understand why I was struggling to stay on top of dishes and she seemed to have plenty of free time.
One day we were having lunch at her house, we were visiting, finished eating, and continued to visit while she cleaned up the table, put away all the food, put the dishes in the dishwasher, wiped the counters clean, and then got a cup of coffee and went into the living room.
That was a lightbulb moment for me.
Suzanne just took care of the daily stuff without even realizing she was doing it.
Me, I felt like I had to schedule the cleaning.
Like “ok, now lunch is done, now I need to set aside 45 minutes to clean up.
And I had assumed that that is what it would be like to maintain a home.
Have a meal, spend an hour cleaning and then sit down with the family.
I had made the task too big in my mind, and I hadn’t thought of actually visiting with someone or just jumping in and doing it.
Since my home was a complete disaster, I had to do something.
But the “build a routine” lists I found were too long and discouraging for me.
I was in this predicament because I didn’t want to clean, so the idea of cleaning all the different areas of the house every day, who wants to spend their days doing that?? YUCK
So I had to require LESS.
That’s right. I started out with minimal routines. And I’ve kept them.
Yes, I’ve added more things over the years, but when the day is busy- I go back to just:
- Put things away.
- Do the dishes.
- Wipe off the counters and stove.
I make sure to do this twice a day.
The morning reset sets me up for a successful day. Next time I walk into the kitchen and need to make lunch or dinner, the kitchen is ready, it’s welcoming and it makes my life easier.
It takes less than 10 minutes to clean up the kitchen and get those dishes in the dishwasher. Why did I think it would take an hour before??
10 minutes, is all it takes to have this beautiful, welcoming, clean kitchen.
Definitely a gift to my future self.
Establishing a daily maintenance routine is JUST as important as decluttering.
We have to do both things- declutter and regular cleaning.
If we only declutter, we’ll still have messy habits and the house will feel cluttered and chaotic, but if we work on these daily resets, the house feels more manageable and we have more time to declutter, and when we declutter the excess, it takes less time to do the daily resets- It’s wonderful!
If you would like help establishing these daily resets, I created a full editable chart set so you can track your progress and celebrate your successes.