This Philosophy of a Clean Home: One Simple Mindset to Refresh Your Home-Cleaning Process


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home cleaning

Keeping my home clean has felt overwhelming for years. I look around and see so many areas that need attention, and I’m daunted, so I put it off.

Weeks or even months go by until, perhaps we’re having company or hosting a party, and life necessitates the dreaded duty of cleaning.

Or perhaps I get motivated and finally clean the house one day, simply for the benefit of my family and me. That’s always nice. However, those moments are few and far between.

Either way, the overarching truth for many of us is…

  • We feel overwhelmed by the uncleanliness of our home and therefore procrastinate cleaning
  • We clean in spurts, as we feel motivated, and not nearly often enough to have the clean home we desire
  • We clean for company, making the show of hospitality a massive chore which leads us to avoid it

If that’s you, can I share with you a simple philosophy that has lifted this burden of overwhelm from my shoulders?

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When it comes to cleaning your home, change your mindset about when you expect yourself to do things. Tell yourself,

If you’ve noticed it, the time to clean it is now.

  • The hand prints on the glass door? Grab the Windex.
  • The cobweb on the ceiling? Grab a Kleenex.
  • The grim in the bottom of the trashcan? Run some water and dish soap in it now, even as you take the trash out and pack lunches. Don’t delay.

Rather than letting tasks pile up for some hypothetical “cleaning day,” all while adding subconscious stress to my shoulders as I live with greasy fingerprints, I address them one at a time as they come up.

If I can’t get to it immediately, I do it when I can, within the next few days.

These little tasks pretty well replace the need for cleaning binges.

And I feel more free to offer hospitality. It’s no longer the burden that it once was.

For me, this philosophy has greatly reduced my home-cleaning stress. I’m motivated by goals, so now when I notice something needing attention, I force myself to stop and give it (at least most of the time). I’ll be the first to admit that I’m a work in progress when it comes to housework!

This way of thinking has also infiltrated itself into other areas of my day-to-day life. For example, my flowers actually look quite nice this year. When I’ve noticed them, I’ve watered them.

Put this policy in place, and then do it! Don’t let yourself off the hook.

You’ll find yourself feeling pretty good about the state of your home, and you’ll be right!

What’s your trick for keeping your home clean?

Photo credit

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Comments

  1. Marlene says:

    I always struggled between either scheduling cleaning days and clean along for many years as I raised my three sons to adult hood and now caring for my mother and working as a professional artist. At first scheduling worked but it became a burden. But cleaning along makes more sense.

    Years ago I had read a small booklet along the same line clean as you go. It was written by an older man. Wish I could find it but your post came along.

    Your post is a confirmation of how I have been feeling about cleaning as well as taking life on. Thanks for sharing.

  2. Linda says:

    When you first posted this idea I adopted it (mostly). It helped me and I have liked it. However, today I was helping granddaughters wash windows. It was a Busy time keeping them both going with the right height stool, inside and then outside, etc. As I finally sank into a chair to rest I saw a big cobweb. I will do it later, I thought! That was six hours ago. I opened my iPad to relax and re-read some of your posts and saw This one. So now the cobweb is gone (and all the others, too, that I saw when I looked up!) And I am more ready for God to use my house. Thanks again

    • Linda, that is so cool. Thanks for sharing. It is such a (humbling) privilege that you allow my words to influence you. That is very encouraging to hear as a writer and adds so much worth to the time I spend blogging.

      And in fact, I just saw a spot on my window cushion yesterday and ignored it. I immediately thought about this article and that I should just get it, but I never did. I need to be reminded and challenged to stay the course and stay disciplined too, so you’ve done that for me. Go to get that spot now… 🙂

  3. Brittany says:

    I read somewhere, “Don’t let your hands be empty” and it has helped me greatly! I don’t have to spend hours at the end of the day trying to tidy the messes that were made by my five littles. I tidy throughout the day and that leaves me time relax (a little) at the end of the day. I love your idea of notice it, a dress it!

    • SUCH a great thought! I think I need to create a printable of that and hang it on my wall. Now adding the a third child, I’m realizing I’ve gotta up my game around the home. I’m always searching for new ways to motivate myself. Thanks for sharing!

    • Jess says:

      Brittany,
      My mum says similar – “Never waste a trip” – and this helps me greatly too!
      And Katie, I love your idea of creating a printable that says that 🙂

  4. Michelle says:

    I will say I have struggled with the opposite, cleaning has been a idol! Yikes!! The Lord convicted my heart over 5 years ago and I remember it like it was yesterday. I was straightening up in the nursery and my heart was convicted of not choosing the “good part” as Mary did! I was Martha!! Ouch. I cleaned our home top to bottom every week! I am thankful to say The Lord has used my 3 children who are my biggest mission field and need me and homeschooling to work this out in my heart. I just don’t have the time to do it anymore. Not that I don’t clean, b/c I do, but now I break it down into 2 weeks. Upstairs one week and downstairs the next. Laundry starts over every Monday. Our home is clean, organized and mostly clutter free and I don’t stress nearly as much as I use to 🙂

  5. Martha says:

    We are so right!
    I used to clean every Saturday, and it was soooo hard for me!
    Somewhere I read your cleaning policy and I tried it!
    Now, my house is always clean [at least the basics] and in my cleaning day [it’s Saturday again] i don’t spend the whole day cleaning!

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