This is a guest post
Have you checked in with yourself recently? Being a mom is a tough job, and if you’re caring for someone else or working outside the home, you have many more responsibilities to juggle. With so much to look after, you may think you need Cinderella’s mice to keep your house from falling apart. Luckily, there is hope.
Here are simple ways single mothers can keep their homes sparkling without sacrificing their time with the kids they cherish.
Prioritize Through Lists
Are you the kind of person who can jump right into something? Odds are, you might feel overwhelmed by a messy household and need to figure out what to tackle first — or you might get distracted by all the things you have left to do. A list can help you determine what to prioritize while focusing on chores. Do you have a mess on your countertop that’s practically inviting pests inside? Tackle any time-sensitive tasks like that before you move on to low-priority items.
For example, if someone in your household is allergic to dust, you may want to find lasting solutions to help you tackle the amount that settles in your home. Daily vacuuming might seem like the right option, but you’ll quickly run on empty. Instead, find out the truth behind these allergies.
An allergy to dust could be an issue with pet dander, which could have decomposed into fine dust now layered on all your items. Always clean pet spaces first — you’ll be glad you tackled them.
Complete a Daily Laundry Load
Kids create a lot of laundry, which can pile up into a mountain that feels overwhelming at the end of the week. Instead of tackling everything on your day off, you can run a daily cycle or two to lessen your metaphorical and physical load.
For example, a washing and drying schedule might look something like the following:
- Monday: Kid A clothes
- Tuesday: Kid B clothes
- Wednesday: Your clothes
- Thursday: Bathroom towels
- Friday: Kitchen towels
- Saturday: Bedsheets
- Sunday: Extra as needed
Of course, if you notice you have fewer things to wash on certain days, you can pair those days up. The greatness of a washing schedule is that you’ll completely customize it to your lifestyle in no time. It’ll quickly become a habit once you start doing laundry daily. If your kids are old enough, teach them how to do laundry to help them keep up with the schedule.
Take Care of Hazards First
You should always ensure your home is safe for everyone who enters. Kids typically make several messes daily, so cleaning up after them should be at the top of your to-do list. A significant part of keeping places like the bathroom clean is mopping up any wet spots, keeping it safe as much as you keep it tidy. That way, you can reduce the likelihood of slipping or falling.
You should also check your fridge and pantry often. Throwing out old leftovers or expired food can help your children stay safe. Not every kid is old enough to understand when food goes wrong, but they may try to eat something within their line of sight.
Make Your Cleaning Supplies Accessible
If there’s one area you should think about decluttering, it’s where you store your cleaning supplies. Most people keep them under bathroom or kitchen sinks, but other items might bury them. You may not even want to make an effort if you have to pull out several things to get to your general cleaning products.
Pick out cleaning supplies you don’t use or aren’t good anymore. Removing these items will make room for the multipurpose cleaners you need. Decluttering might help your mind feel as clear as the cabinets you empty.
Keep Your Hands Full
Having your hands full is likely the last thing you want to do after a long day’s work. However, you’ll lighten your mental load by physically filling your arms with things that need to be relocated in your home. Pick something that doesn’t belong in the living room and return it to its proper place. You can easily remember this technique whenever you’re leaving a room, as it takes around 10 seconds to complete.
You can also enlist your kids by urging them to return things to their rooms when they bring them to shared spaces. Show your children that cleaning up messes can be effortless sometimes, and they may be more willing to follow through.
Make Cleaning a Nightly Routine
Sometimes, there’s no better way to implement cleaning into your life than to make it part of your daily routine. After a hectic move or a couple of weeks of being on vacation, your house may have fallen into disarray you couldn’t have even imagined. Cleaning up every night will help return your home to its old form. Sticking a new habit may take a little while, but 30 minutes daily could be transformational.
Utilize Your Cleaning Time Wisely
The early bird might catch the worm, but that’s not true for single moms who need to clean their houses. It might be challenging to make time for cleaning in a busy schedule, but sometimes, you need the structure of planned tasks each day. Other times, you may need to be as spontaneous as your kids and clean opportunistically.
Kids are a wildcard who can make seemingly endless messes, so you have to remain flexible. Remember, your house isn’t a magazine cover. Your home might not be perfect, but it’ll be full of love.