Deep cleaning is one of those weirdly satisfying things for me. On the one hand it is deeply satisfying and on the other hand, ew. Kind of like popping a zit…just me? Moving on…
Our house has hit one of those, desperate for a good, mama cleaning times. I’m doing my mama duty and training my kids to clean, but they are kids and sometimes take advantage of mama’s ADD. Things get busy and sometimes I just don’t pick that battle. Just being honest.
If you are looking for a perfect mama, perfect kids, perfect marriage, and a perfect home, I can’t help you. What I use this space here on the internet for is to encourage other non-perfect mamas in their homeschooling and homemaking journey. Because we can all use more of that, right?
Today, I want to encourage you to deep clean your house. Or a room in it. Or one wall and pantry, like I did. I started the day thinking I was going to deep clean the whole dang kitchen. What I ended up getting done was the bar and pantry, but man, do they sparkle now!
As I was cleaning, I was writing a blog post in my head because that’s how I roll. So here are some tips for deep cleaning your house…or a room in it.
Tips for Deep Cleaning Your House
Occupy and/or Employ Kids
This is obviously your choice and may vary with each deep cleaning session. When I worked in my kitchen the other day, I chose to occupy them and that mostly involves my four-year-old. The older children often occupy themselves just fine.
I typically choose to have my children occupied when I have a deep cleaning session for two reasons. First, I tend to run through a range of emotions when I deep clean. Yes, I am happy, relieved, and satisfied at the end, but in the process I am often frustrated and sometimes even angry at the state of certain things. It’s easier for me to control these emotions when I have no one to lash out at.
Make it Enjoyable
This is particularly important if you are not looking forward to deep cleaning your house. Put on your super comfortable yoga pants, pour a favorite drink, turn the music up, and get going. Or, if you need quiet, make that happen. I know, easier said than done most days, huh?
Light the House Up
Turn on all the lights in the room that you are working in. Throw open the curtains to let the sunshine stream in. Light has the tendency to brighten our moods. It also sheds light on all the dirt and crud that needs cleaning.
I am all about strategies. I love to create a plan. I’m not so great at the implementation part of those plans, my strength is in the researching and planning. This does me no good when it comes to actually getting the house clean. It seems no matter how many “tips for deep cleaning your house” articles I read, the house won’t clean itself. Shoot.
So what I have found that works the best is to keep it simple. Start in the corner of a room and work clockwise. This works for me because at the end of my session, something is actually clean. This works better than saying I will pick up the laundry and dishes throughout the room because that is 1.) never-ending and 2.) it doesn’t leave anything FINISHED.
To keep my momentum going, I need something FINISHED to look at.
This goes hand-in-hand with being strategic. Looking ahead to see if something needs to be done first or is a bigger job that can be broken down into smaller steps can be helpful.
For example, our kitchen sink is on the opposite wall of where I was starting, but there were more than one load of dishes worth of dirty dishes to be done (were there ever!!). We hand wash our dishes so I washed a sink full and set them to air dry while I started on the other side of the kitchen.
Don’t leave the room for every item that needs to be put away. I don’t know about your house, but things have the tendency to congregate in hot spots and all over the house. I am also highly distractible. So when I leave a room to put something away, I will notice all the things that need done in the other room. This inevitably leaves me mumbling like a crazy person in my head, sometimes an angry crazy person.
So, what I do is to put things that go in different rooms together in a spot away from where I’m deep cleaning. Then when I have a few items, then I will take them and put them away quickly. If things need moved in the other room where they are going (like books need re-shelving in addition to the ones I’m bringing back), then I set them all nicely together in one spot and return to my job at hand.
Resist the Urge to Start Another Project
When I was cleaning my kitchen, I came to my recipe box. Now, my recipe box is in need of a decluttering because I have a ton of recipes we never ended up using or we didn’t like. I could have started cleaning that out because it really was decluttering, but it would not have helped the overall project. The recipe box was going to take the same amount of space no matter if it was purged or not. So I left it alone and finished the wall I was working on.
Sometimes you will come across a project (like my recipe box) that legitimately needs done, but now is not the time. Or you will notice things like paint nicks that need retouched. Don’t stop your deep cleaning session to do this now.
And I don’t know about you, but my brain tends to really start working creatively when I’m cleaning. So I think of all sorts of blog posts (like this one), craft projects, and organizational projects when I am working. Like I mentioned, I am a highly distractible person so I need to put those ideas on paper as I go so I can get them out of my head and focus on my task at hand. Thus, the notes.
Keep Yourself Hydrated
Drink water. Snack on vegetables. Just make sure you don’t end up thirsty, it will make you tired. And I do mean water, that actual stuff your body needs to function.
Resist the Urge to Multi-Task
This may sound a bit redundant, but if you are like me, you need the repetition. Focus on your task at hand, don’t try to do a bunch (or even two or three) things at once. Work on one thing until it is completed. Finished is the goal. Don’t lose track of that and end up with an even bigger mess than when you started with nothing to show for it.
Boom. There you go. Almost 1200 words giving you my best tips for deep cleaning your house or a room or a wall and pantry in it. 😉
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