Whereas some people find cleaning a perfect way to relax or canalise stress, I seem to have a congenital aversion towards it. I wouldn't say I'm a true slob, but that is simply because I enjoy the fresh feeling of a clean - or at least relatively orderly - house too much. 'Clean desk, clear mind' is what they say, and I must say, they are absolutely right. Not alone does a nice and orderly space bring out the pretty details of your decor way better, it also makes for less distraction, less irritation and plain peace of mind. And think about the sheer happiness a fresh made bed with white sheets can bring you - my point exactly. The conclusion is clear: stuff - and by that I mean cleaning - needs to be done. But what if you really, really, really don't feel like it?
So, since my natural distaste towards everything that involves houselhold chores, I have become a pro in convincing (i.e. tricking) myself to do them anyway. This is how:
1. Make a monthly cleaning schedule.
Getting the job done just becomes easier if you know where to start right ahead. That is why I have made myself a cleaning schedule divided into four weeks. Per week I listed up the chores that need to be done, so that every spot of the house gets cleaned at least once a month. Week one, for instance, is filled with cleaning the kitchen, vacuum cleaning and changing the sheets. Week two I'll dust off, I'll vacuum clean again and I'll clean the bathroom and the toilet downstairs. On week three, I do about the same as week one, but I added mopping the kitchen and the bathroom. And on week four I leave out the dusting and clean the windows of one room instead. Of course you can change things up according to your liking. Maybe you like the clean the bathroom every week, or prefer to leave your sheets on for a week longer. We all have our own ideas of what's a hygienic minimum and what's going a little OCD overboard, don't we?
2. Buy pretty cleaning gear.
Dusting just becomes more fun if I can look at my pretty merino wool plumeau while doing it, and mopping up becomes easier with my shiny enamel bucket. Call me crazy but it just is so. Compare it to pretty workout clothes! Don't they make going to gym a little bit nicer?
3. Make it a routine.
Yup, here I go again with my routines. I've made a habit out of doing the grocery shopping and the ironing on thursday and the bulk of the cleaning work on saturday morning, together with my beau. Knowing that the first few hours of the weekend will be filled with cleaning and that afterwards I'm done with it and the chilling without guilt can commence, just makes it that much easier to get started.
4. Make it a party (put on some music, duh).
Even the nastiest chore gets slightly lightened if you put a nice tune to it, no? I prefer something I can sing along to really loudly (to my beau's regret), like some Les Misérables or The backstreet boys (yes, my taste can be rather tacky, and I'm not ashamed to say it). When I really feel like it, I'll even do a little dance with the vacuum cleaner (he's really got the moves, you see). Ironing on the other hand is something I like to do in the company of the Downton Abbey cast or a movie, if the pile of clean laundry that I need to work my way through is exceptionally large.
5. Look at it as a free work out.
Did you know you burn 400 calories just by giving the bathroom a thourough clean? Well, in any case I can feel it in my arms when I'm scrubbing those tiles in the shower!
What are your ways to those boring household chores a bit easier to bear? More tips are always welcome!