One of my most popular blog posts of all time is this post I wrote way back in 2016 about habits you can implement to keep your home cleaner without feeling like you’re doing anything extra.
I spend a lot of time thinking about that post and why it resonated so much with so many of you. I think it boils down to this: we all want to feel like we have our lives together and like our home is organized and clean. But we also don’t want to actually spend the time it takes to clean our house all the time.
We want the pretty, shiny “after” without all of the effort.
And, I get it! I want that too! I can’t tell you how many times I’ve daydreamed about being like Mary Poppins and being able to snap my way to a clean house. I swear, if I could have any superpower, that would be it.
But, alas, none of us are Mary Poppins and we all have to actually put in a bit of effort if we want a clean, organized, and beautiful house. But that doesn’t mean it has to be hard! If I’ve learned anything over the years of having this blog and writing about how to make your house a home, it’s that it isn’t always as hard as you’d think to get yourself organized and make your house beautiful. It just takes a little bit of dedication.
So, I decided that this year I’d be focusing on bringing even more of that kind of content to you – content that will help you get your life, home, closet, and mind on track, clutter-free, organized, and beautiful without feeling like you’re putting in all that extra work. It might even be, dare I say, FUN.
Here’s the plan: once a month, every month, for this entire year I’ll be coming at you with a post all about those little hacks to make your life easier. It might be new habits to try out, it might be a quick-start guide to cleaning out your closet…but it’s all going to be focused on quick and simple ways to help you feel like you have your crap together.
Because that’s all we really want, isn’t it?!
This month, I’m doing a bit of an addendum to the post that sparked this whole idea. Today I’m zeroing in on what is, for me, the three most important daily habits to implement that will make your house noticeably cleaner. They aren’t big or complicated, and none of them will take you any longer than 5-10 minutes. But, I promise you that if you start doing these three little things every single day, you’ll notice over time that your home looks and feels cleaner and you don’t feel like you’re doing any extra work.
That’s the beauty of making something a habit. Once it becomes second nature, you don’t even notice that you’re doing it, and it doesn’t feel challenging to keep up with – it’s just a small part of your day that just so happens to make your entire life easier.
Talk about a simple solution.
So, what are the three habits? Well, everyone will probably have a slightly different idea of what makes the biggest difference in a clean-feeling house, but these are the three things that I find make the biggest difference for me:
3 Easy Habits for a Clean Home
- Make your bed every day. Every day! No exceptions! Make it a habit and just do it. This one is slightly controversial because people tend to fall into two camps – those who make their beds and those who don’t. And it’s really hard to convince a not-bed-maker that it’s important to make your bed. But hear me out – I’m actually not a bed-maker. At all. I hate making the bed and if left to my own devices it would never ever get made. It seems annoying and pointless and I’m just getting back into it tonight so why mess with it? But! I’ve noticed that when my bed is made, my entire bedroom feels noticeably cleaner. Even if the laundry basket is overflowing, the floor needs to be vacuumed, and the dresser is piled three feet high with random junk, making the bed is a 2-minute task that reduces the visual clutter in the room and makes everything feel cleaner. Just try it – you might be surprised!
- End every day with a clean and empty sink. I don’t know what it is about the magic of a clean sink, but life feels just a little more under control when my sink is sparkly and there’s nary a dirty dish to be seen. I’m one of those people who firmly believes that as long as my kitchen is clean the rest of the house feels at least 75% less chaotic, so I’m a huge proponent of taking care of the dishes right away. Depending on your evening routine you may have to play around with when you want to take care of the sink, but the most important thing is that you find the time to do it every single day. Load up the dishwasher, run it if necessary, and then take the extra time to give your sink a quick scrub-down. For us, this typically happens while Jackson is being put to bed – whoever isn’t on Jackson duty is in charge of cleaning up the kitchen and getting everything into the dishwasher. If your evenings are just too busy you could tweak this and plan to start every day with a clean sink – while your kids are having breakfast each morning, spend a few minutes cleaning out the sink and running the dishwasher. Even if you don’t have time to wipe down the counters or clear the crumbs off the table, having a clean sink will instantly make the entire kitchen feel noticeably better.
- Make the two-minute rule an integral part of your routine. If you haven’t read the original blog post and don’t know what I’m talking about, here’s the two-minute rule: if a task can be done in two minutes or less, do it now rather than putting it off. For example, when you walk in the door after work, it only takes about 30 seconds to hang your coat up in the closet – so don’t just toss it onto a nearby chair, take a second to put it away. And after you finish your makeup routine in the morning, it takes less than a minute to put everything back away in the cabinet rather than leaving it sitting out on the counter – and a cleared-off counter goes a long way to making a bathroom feel clean! We all tend to get into a “hurry, hurry, hurry” mindset and push aside little tasks that feel unimportant in the moment, but those little tasks pile up in a hurry and soon you’ve got an hours’ worth of cleaning and no clue where to start. Instead, if you shift your mindset to slow down just a little bit and immediately take care of any little things that won’t take up more than two minutes of your time, you’ll find that everything feels cleaner and more organized – and since you aren’t spending more than 2 minutes at a time on making it happen, it won’t feel like any extra effort to you!
That’s it! Those are, in my humble opinion, the three most important habits you can implement right now to make your entire life feel a little more organized. We all know that January is the time where we’re all feeling motivated to get ourselves back on track, so I challenge you to make an effort this month to make these three habits a regular part of your day. It won’t take up more than 10 minutes or so of your day-to-day life, and I promise you that once you’ve been consistent about doing them for a few weeks you’ll find that your house feels much cleaner on a daily basis – and you won’t feel like you’re even having to work for it!
I’m really excited to be bringing this new series to you this year, and I hope that throughout the course of the year we can all find some simple, actionable ways to make things feel a little more organized in our lives.
If you have any suggestions for specific topics you’d love to get some tips on this year or if you have any awesome lazy-girl life hacks that you’d love to share, be sure to leave a comment and let me know! And be sure to let me know how you’re doing on those habits – I know I’m going to be working on implementing them all month right along with you!
Did you miss one of the posts in our life hacks series? Catch up on the other posts below: