There is nothing I love to do quite as much as scrubbing the toilets in my home.
Seriously. When does anyone enjoy cleaning? And I am not just talking about the toilet, but literally any type of cleaning at all.
Not a single person I am guessing.
When I was younger and had a family along with a full-time job, weekly cleaning was just something that had to be done. Since my schedule was already packed to the nines, that meant I had to do all of it (laundry included) in one frazzled day.
This was my Saturday marathon cleaning day and I would usually plop my kiddos in front of the television with a bowl of fruit loops. Then I would grab my supplies and make the mad dash of cleaning as quickly as I could before any of them needed me.
It was quite comical really.
There I would be running from room to room trying to clean, wash, vacuum, up the cluttered and messy remnants from the week. Washing walls, dusting, vacuuming, and gathering up the debris that made our space look more like a disaster area rather than a room in our house.
This weekly ritual usually ate up most of the day and by the end of it, I was completely and totally spent. Too tired to play with the kids or do anything with my family.
I would just chalk it up to another Saturday of a frazzled working mom.
I remember saying to myself, there really has to be a better way. A way to clean the house without sacrificing a full Saturday every single weekend. I mean, really. Saturdays were meant to be fun. A day spent with my family so we could enjoy each other and laugh and play.
Then it hit me. The answer was so obvious I didn’t even see it at first.
I needed to break it down.
Just like decluttering a home it is best to break a huge job like this down into simple and quick steps. Steps you can weave throughout your busy day without monopolizing it. Daily, weekly monthly cleaning steps you can following along to get your cleaning done in the quickest way.
But before you can do that you need a list of all the chores you usually do. A room by room master list so you know just exactly the things that need to be done, and how often, in order to keep a room clean.
The rest is easy from there. Just take those tasks and schedule them throughout your days and week to break this big bad boy down making it much less overwhelming.
Daily, Weekly, Monthly Cleaning Checklist
Step #1. Make a Room by Room Cleaning List
Grab yourself a clipboard and take a stroll around your home. Use a fresh sheet of paper for each room and make a list of all the cleaning things that you normally do and those things you want to do but never really have the time.
Start at the floor and work your way up to the ceiling. Really look at everything taking it all in. Don’t miss a chore thinking you will remember. Write it all done. Everything.
I am talking simple daily chores to the spring cleaning jobs you tackle just once a year. Get it all down so you have a thorough and complete list.
This part is going to take some time so you may want to do a few rooms a day until your list is completed.
The key here is to not rush things. The list for each room needs to be complete so your master list is complete. That way you will know all the things are getting done and you can finally put cleaning your home on autopilot.
Step #2. Hit Every Single Room
This is important if you want this system to work. That means you want to make a list for the linen closet, the basement, the garage, the back porch. Every single solitary space in your home must have a list.
Step #3. Prioritize
Once you have your lists done you will want to go through them one at a time. With a few colored highlighters go through each task determining if it is a high priority task meaning it needs to be done a few times a week or a low priority task that gets done just a few times a year.
Here is a sample daily, weekly, monthly cleaning guide.
- Yellow – High Priority Task (Items that need daily cleaning)
- Sweeping the kitchen floor
- Wiping down the bathroom sink
- Doing the dishes
- Laundry (If you are a daily washer)
- Feeding the dog
- Checking bookbags
- Pink – Medium Priority Task (Items that need weekly cleaning)
- Vacuuming the carpets
- Washing the kitchen floor
- Dusting the furniture
- Laundry (If you are a weekly washer)
- Green – Medium/Low Priority Task (Items that need monthly cleaning)
- Washing the other floors
- Dusting wall pictures/shelves
- Cleaning kitchen appliances
- Wash floor rugs
- Blue – Low Priority Tasks (Items that need seasonal cleaning)
- Washing bed comforters
- Vacuuming under furniture
- Cleaning the furnace filter
- Washing windows
- Washing trim work
- Shampooing carpets
Step #4. Pick a Day
Each day of the week you will want to “assign” a room in your home to clean. Be sure to always look at your schedule to know your super busy days and your not so crazy days. I prefer to match my more involved cleaning areas for my more laid back days like cleaning the kitchen on Saturday, but you may want to match the room to what you are doing. Like cleaning the kitchen on the day before you get groceries. There is just something about a cleaned fridge when you are putting fresh produce away.
The trick here is to match the room to your schedule so you can more easily get it done without being tempted to skip it due to an overly busy day.
Step #5. Follow Your List
When it’s time to clean just follow along with your daily, weekly, monthly cleaning list you made in step #1. I keep these sheets in page protectors tucked inside of my Decluttering Planner. That way my list is ready to go when I am. I can take it right out of my planner into the room I am cleaning and check each item off as I go along.
D/M PRO TIP: Keep your cleaning list in a page protector and use a washable marker to check things off as you go. When you are done cleaning you can use a tissue to clean the sheet off. This is a great way to keep track of without messing up your room cleaning list.
Step #6. Break it Down (Again)
In step number 3, I had you use colored highlighters to prioritize your list. This is where the magic really comes in to play. Each you will want to do an extra item from those other colored areas. Again this all depends on the time you have available that day or course, but the trick here is to do at least one thing each week from your lower priority colors.
D/M PRO TIP: Be sure you date the lower priority tasks when you complete them. This will remind you of when you did those chores so you can better stay on top of them.
Step #7. Rinse and Repeat
Each week you will want to set up a cleaning plan. if you have a schedule that is pretty routine you can pick a plan for the entire month and just run with it. I like to make a new weekly plan each Sunday. That is planning day in our home and my chance to really map out a week that will be realistic and productive rather than overwhelming and frustrating.
By customizing your daily, weekly, monthly cleaning schedule each week you will be surprised at how you will be better able to match the rooms to your ever-changing schedule.
Remember the trick to anything working is to have systems set into place especially in our homes. This is the key to keeping things simple instead of overwhelming. The prep work may take some time but when the end result is meant to put a job of this size on autopilot isn’t that initial time investment worth it?
I say, absolutely yes!