Find a Cleaning Schedule That Works for You

Having shared some of the messy spots in my house last month, it probably won’t come as a shock when I admit that I have struggled with cleaning my home for my entire adult life.  One of my biggest stumbling blocks, which may also plague you, was that I just couldn’t find the right system for keeping my house clean.

If you struggle with keeping your house clean it could be that you need to try a different cleaning schedule. There isn't a one size fits all approach to cleaning, so here are some ideas so you can figure out what works best for you.

I think, however, I have finally figured out this house cleaning stuff, and I’ll share some tips with those of you that also struggle with keeping your home clean.

My Most Important Discovery

I have tried many systems (too many!) for housekeeping.  From ones that made me put on shoes in the morning to ones with lots of check boxes, from special apps for my iPhone to free downloads from sites — you name it, I may have tried it.  Each would go fine for a while, and then I’d fall off the wagon.  I couldn’t understand why I was always failing.

Then, I finally figured out that I couldn’t use a schedule that somebody else has written. I needed to take the time to write out my schedule, with a mind toward tasks that were applicable to our household, as well as to the general schedule of our days.

This is not to say that you can’t get inspiration from the schedules of others, but you will probably be best off to create your own after you’ve gathered the inspiration.  I have set up a Cleaning Schedules board on Pinterest, which I will keep adding to, that you can browse for inspiration.

Establish a Schedule (or Routine)

House cleaning is best kept up with when you are following some type of routine or schedule.  It’s not be chance that homemakers used to have tasks assigned to certain days, such as washing day.  In general, we tend to work best with routines.  If you can get into the habit of each Monday being the day you clean the bathrooms, then you will have more of a tendency to keep those bathrooms clean.

When I was recently trying to come up with a cleaning routine, this is what worked for me:

1. Write out a complete list of household tasks that must be done each week. Don’t get caught up in things that need to be done less often at this point.

2. Write down obligations that you typically have throughout the week that are reoccurring.

3. Assign your household tasks to specific days, taking care to put more time consuming items on days when you have less reoccurring obligations.  For instance, in our household, we have our homeschool co-op and ballet lessons on the same day.  This is a day, then, when I purposefully have assigned myself fewer household tasks.

Keep in mind: Some tasks may have to happen every single day or multiple times in a week.  On my schedule, I have loading/unloading the dishwasher listed each day.

Find a Way to Display Your Schedule

I’m going to go out on a limb and guess that if you struggle with housekeeping, you’re also the kind of person who benefits from visual aids.  So, your next step is going to be to find a way to display your weekly schedule.

Examples of Ways to Display Your Schedule:

1. Laminate papers with your schedule on them so you will be able to cross items off with a dry erase marker.  (I used my personal laminator for this, that way if I make changes later, it will be easy to just laminate a new page.)  I have a separate sheet for each day of the week, because I also have school and work tasks on each page.

2. Frame your schedule and use a dry erase marker right on the glass.

3. Create your own printable daily or weekly schedule, and just print a new one up each day/week.

4. Write out tasks on index cards and set out the appropriate index card(s) prior to going to bed the night before.

Follow Your Schedule

Now that you have a schedule, it’s time to start following it!  Be gentle with yourself, and allow yourself some time to ease into it, especially if you haven’t been regularly following a cleaning schedule.

Remember, also, that this is your schedule.  Do you know what that means?  Amongst other things, it means that you don’t have to be beholden to it.  You are its creator.  If something isn’t working, just know that you can change the schedule instead of abandoning it.

What are things that you do to help you with your cleaning routine?  Which tasks are typically included in your routine?

Angie, a contributing writer at The Happy Housewife, is a homeschooling mom to three children and writes about everything that happens in their lives between all the loads of laundry at Many Little Blessings. She is also the founder of The Homeschool Classroom, Catholic Mothers Online, Tiny Owl Designs, and Just a Tiny Owl {Etsy shop}.

photo credit

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5 Simple Ways to Wake Up Earlier

I never thought of myself as a morning person, although I found out that when I did wake up earlier I got more done, had more energy and stuck to a routine. Getting up earlier allowed me to fit in time to exercise, which then gave me more energy and I felt better. It didn't happen overnight- it took me a while to get in a routine of waking up earlier and here is how I did it.

I’m writing this article for everyone who struggles waking up early. I know not everyone wants or needs to be an early riser. There were many years when my husband worked shifts that I stayed up later because he worked late.

But there are many of you who want to wake up early but struggle, I struggle too.

I don’t consider myself a morning person or an evening person. My best hours are from 9 am to 2 pm.  I am also not one who feels energized when I wake up super early.

To be honest, I feel tired.

But, when I wake up early I am able to accomplish much more in the morning hours than I am ever able to accomplish by staying up until midnight or one in the morning. So even though I am tired later in the day, I’ve already had my most productive hours in the morning, so I don’t have to be “on” at 8pm.

Since I have struggled in this area I figured I would share some of things that have helped me make the change to become an earlier riser. And if we are being honest, when I say early I mean 6 am. I will never be a 4 am person, I have teenagers, and they seem to want to do all their talking after 10 pm.

Quit the Caffeine

I don’t drink it after 1pm, no matter what. If I do I can’t fall asleep even when my body is exhausted. My mind can’t relax enough to fall asleep.

Turn Off Technology

I’m guilty of surfing the web before I go to bed, especially now that I have an iPad. For many months I even read my bible on the computer in the evenings. I have found that computer, television, tablets, and video games do not help you fall asleep.

Not only do they keep you awake, it is easy to turn on the television to catch the end of a show and end up watching another hour or two because we get sucked in! If you need to do something before you fall asleep try reading a book.

Go to Bed Earlier

Sounds simple, but for some reason it is so hard. I often find myself looking at the clock and realizing it is almost midnight! Give yourself a bedtime and set a timer to remind yourself it is time for bed. If I want to fall asleep at 10:30 I try to go to bed at 10pm and give myself a little extra time for reading.

Reader tip: Set your alarm on your phone for an hour before you want to go to bed. That will remind you that you need to start getting ready for bed and winding down so your bedtime doesn’t sneak up on you.

It is hard to fall asleep earlier if you are waking up later. There will be a few days in the beginning where you have to force yourself to get up early even though you were up late. Pretty soon you will be tired enough to fall asleep at the earlier hour.

This year since we had a change in our school schedule, I need to get up before 6am. This was a huge adjustment since we were really enjoying our lazy days of summer. I eased into an earlier schedule by setting my alarm clock 15 minutes earlier every few days. Now I wake up before my alarm several days a week because my body is use to the new schedule.

Get Enough Sleep

You know how much sleep you need to be a productive person the next day, so make sure you get it! Some people only need 6 or 7 hours, and others need at least 8. Figure out how much sleep you need and create a sleeping schedule to accommodate your needs!

Get a Routine

This is the most important thing for me. I need about 7 hours of sleep, so I try to go to bed around 11pm and wake up between 6 and 6:30. It is important to go to bed and wake up at around the same time every day.

If you are just starting to change your routine I would recommend going to bed and waking up 15 minutes earlier every day until you reached your desired wake-up time. (see above)

Don’t Get Discouraged!

I recently started adjusting my schedule to wake up a little earlier, after two successful days my family was hit with the crud. I wasn’t going to bed until after midnight most nights and was up with sick kids numerous times throughout the night.

I turned off my alarm and got some extra sleep so I didn’t get the crud too! I was discouraged to be thrown off track so quickly, but I realized that the crud would soon pass and I could get back on schedule.

Don’t let little setbacks discourage you, just pick up where you left off and work on establishing a good routine.

I never thought of myself as a morning person, although I found out that when I did wake up earlier I got more done, had more energy and stuck to a routine. Getting up earlier allowed me to fit in time to exercise, which then gave me more energy and I felt better. It didn't happen overnight- it took me a while to get in a routine of waking up earlier and here is how I did it.

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Make Over Your Mornings 14 Day Online Course: Get the 1st Day Free!

I’m often asked the question, “How do you do it all?”

Well, I don’t do it all, but I do get a lot done every day and the only way I’m able to do it is because I’ve had a morning routine for many years.

Your morning sets the tone for the rest of the day, so I’m convinced if you get that right, you’ll get the rest of the day right too.

If you need a little “kick in the pants” to get your mornings off to a fantastic start my friend Crystal as a great course and you can try the first day for free!

The Make Over Your Mornings Course will help you:

  • Develop a morning routine and before bed routine
  • Streamline your morning tasks
  • Learn how to make to-do lists that support your day
  • Create realistic, but stretching goals
  • Discover the power of accountability and how to implement it into your life
  • Establish internal and external motivations to create perseverance in your new routines
  • Find time to refuel your tank and make space in your day for things you love
  • Experience much more focus, organization, and clarity in your daily life

How is Make Over Your Mornings Set Up?

The course has specifically been set up so that each day’s reading and assignment can be done in just 15 minutes or less!  Each of the 14 days, you’ll read a short chapter, watch a short video that includes practical tips and encouragement, and a project to complete to help you implement what you’ve learned that day.

How Do I Access This Course?

The course videos and materials can be accessed via any desktop computer, laptop computer, smartphone, or mobile device. You can choose to print the workbook or download it to your computer or phone.  And, it is all self-paced!  Begin and end as it works for you as there are no deadlines.  Plus, you’ll have lifetime access to all course downloads upon purchase.

Can I Try Out the Course Before Purchasing?

YES! This is the reason I’m telling you about it today.  Right now, you can get the first day of the course for FREE!  This is an awesome opportunity to see how beneficial the course will be for you to make sure it’s valuable for you before buying.  See below for how to get the first day for free.

When I Decide to Purchase, How Much Is It?

The Make Over Your Mornings Course is normally $17. However, on August 25th, you can purchase this 14 day online for course for only $10!  One day only though, so don’t delay.  I’ll remind you about the sale on Tuesday.

See more information and sign up to get the first day of Make Over Your Mornings free here!

This post may contain a link to an affiliate. See my disclosure policy for more information.

Make Over Your Mornings: a 14 Day Online Course to Increase Your Joy

I’m a total morning person, but that hasn’t always been true! I use to sleep until the kids got up (sometimes later) and spend the rest of the day catching up.

Getting my mornings under control was a huge factor in my becoming more organizing and productive during the day. If you struggle with feeling behind all day you’ll want to check out this sale from Money Saving Mom, Crystal Paine.

Make Over Your Mornings Course — a 14-day online course that includes videos, a workbook, and step-by-step projects.

This 14-day course is designed to help you revolutionize your productivity, streamline your routines, invest your time in things that truly matter, and find more joy and peace in the process.

Worried about having enough time to complete the course?  DON’T!  The course has specifically been set up so that each day’s reading and assignment can be done in just 15 minutes or less!  Each of the 14 days, you’ll read a short chapter, watch a short video that includes practical tips and encouragement, and a project to complete to help you implement what you’ve learned that day.

The Make Over Your Mornings Course will help you:

  • Develop a morning routine and before bed routine
  • Streamline your morning tasks
  • Learn how to make to-do lists that support your day
  • Create realistic, but stretching goals
  • Discover the power of accountability and how to implement it into your life
  • Establish internal and external motivations to create perseverance in your new routines
  • Find time to refuel your tank and make space in your day for things you love
  • Experience much more focus, organization, and clarity in your daily life

When you purchase this course, you’ll get immediate access to all of the following:

  • 14 high-quality videos with motivational encouragement
  • Short video clips that give you a behind-the-scenes peek into Crystal’s everyday home and life
  • A comprehensive workbook with 14 chapters filled with practical ideas and inspirational encouragement
  • Daily projects to guide you on your 14-day journey and help you implement and apply what you learned from the daily video and chapter
  • Printable worksheets to walk you step-by-step through some of the projects and motivate you to follow through
  • Additional links and resources for each day, if you’d like to dig deeper on a subject

How to access the course:

The course videos and materials can be accessed via any desktop computer, laptop computer, smartphone, or mobile device. You can choose to print the workbook or download it to your computer or phone.  And, it is all self-paced!  Begin and end as it works for you as there are no deadlines.  Plus, you’ll have lifetime access to all course downloads upon purchase.

Cost of the course:

The 14 day course will normally retail for $17, however, there is a HUGE sale to take advantage of to get all of the help you need for less!  Starting tomorrow, June 2nd, you can save by ordering early:

  • 12 a.m. to 7 a.m. ET on June 2, 2015 – just $5!!!
  • 7 a.m. to 12 p.m. – just $7!
  • 12 p.m. to 5 p.m. – only $10!
  • 5 p.m. – 12 a.m. – only $13!

Click here to purchase the Make Over Your Mornings Course now or purchase it tomorrow for the above prices!

This post may contain a link to an affiliate. See my disclosure policy for more information.