How DO people keep an organized and clean home????

Hi! I went for a search through yahoo last night and somehow found this site. My search was for housecleaning tips and organization. I found some interesting places, including those that cost money! I'm not sure what to say from here, other than I am seeking a direct path to organization (among other things I'm sure)! LOL

I have a horrible cycle in my daily life, where my intentions are good but rarely do my actions match. I make to-do lists galore. Inevitably, I end up on the phone or at the computer instead of following that to-do list! I have an almost 3 year old dd and a 4 month old ds. So between my bad habits and the kids, my house gets turned upside down. I'd like to blame the kids, but I'm my own worst problem! When I finally decide enough is enough and try to tackle the entire house I get SO overwhelmed. Laundry is stacked to the rafters (either folded in baskets, stacked on dresser tops, or 12 loads of dirty clothes). I've actually had issues as a renter because of my housekeeping *or lack of*. On one side of the coin, I have to say it's not 'dirty' as in filth. It's just clutter and disorganization. I keep the kitchen and bathrooms reasonably clean.
For example: my bills and paper work go in two or three places, my desk, a bookshelf, or an end table by the sofa. I know better than to put themt there cuz when it's time to pay bills I can't find ANYTHING. Or when I need a piece of paper or other information, I search and search.
So far, I've listed laundry and paperwork. Those two are probably my worst. But otherwise, the list goes on. I told my mom one time "I'm a lazy perfectionist!" I want it perfect, but I don't have the energy to keep it that way. Everytime I go to clean, it has to be perfect. But then within a week I'm buried again.....
My husband is a long haul truck driver (owner/operator)for a moving co. He's gone sometimes for a couple weeks. We miss him SOOOOO much. He's really the neat freak of the family. So when he's headed home, say a day or two before he's expected, I do what's called a "Ron clean" LOL And I'm here to say, it's a whole different house when he walks in! I figure he works his tail off to provide for us and makes a huge sacrifice in being gone so much, he deserves a clean house to come home to.
So where am I going with all this? I need a new method or plan. My dh says if I spend an hour a day and do at least one load of laundry a day I would stay on top of it. My bf says she spends four hours on her house most days. FOUR HOURS??? I love her house and would LOVE to keep house like her. But FOUR HOURS most days of the week? I'd be at the nearest bar I'm sure! LOL
We are in the process of finding a place to move, and my objective has been the last week to organize and 'purge'. The last week I have set out each day to do just that and I haven't gotten very far. :( So today I will try again. I've went through the kids room and my own, sorting clothes and toys.
This is my quest and the first step is admitting I have a problem, I guess. I love a clean house, I do. But how can I stay on top of it??
Hmmmm. And the search is on. LOL
Anyone reading this, thanks for listening. I plan to use the diary feature here to keep track of my daily activities, in hopes of identifying my weak points......
TTFN Vanessa

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Comments

Guest's picture

I know this is an old post, but. I found it while ALSO searching for tips and advice for keeping a clean home. I'm the EXACT same way. I'm a perfectionist, and when things aren't staying perfect, I lose motivation. =/

Jana's picture

Second - I am not sure any of us here have an organized and clean home all the time. In fact it may only be a small percentage of the time. But most have a managable house. Mine did not start out that way but I have been here for going on 4 yrs so I have learned a few things. Some I learned the hard way! Like: I HATE to clean my bathroom. But not cleaning it and letting it go means I pay for it when I actually DO clean it. I just HATE scrubbing that tub! But better to do a little at a time then one wipe out session. (in the case of the tub anyway!)

Check out www.flylady.net She has helped alot of us!

Next, just tackle one thing at a time. With kids little like yours it will take you awhile. Just figure out your priorities. Perfectly cleaned house or lived in but managable? Spend time with the kids or spend time making sure everything is perfect? It is a balance. And you will fall off the wagon many times but hey that is what you have this community for. We all fall off more than we stay on and there are tons of us so you are not alone!

Hang in there! And I hope to see you around!

Jana

Lynn's picture

Boy are you in the right place. :) I think pretty much everyone here struggles with this on a daily basis. I started this site not so much because I know everything and can help, but was hoping that we could help each other--because I didn't know, either! And we've done a pretty good job of that, haven't we, folks--helping each other.

The recommendation you're going to get, and probably have already gotten, is to go sign up for FlyLady and then come back here and participate in the FlyBabies forum.

Good luck! We're all of us in the same boat.

Lynn Siprelle, Editor

Susannah's picture

Flylady.net is the place to start! Oh, Vanessa, how I empathize with you. I could have written that post myself a few years ago, and sometimes my house still falls completely apart. My house really does get that way overnight, with seven people living in it.

The good thing now, being on Flylady's program, is that I know how to tackle it. I have a starting block. Set a timer, work for 15 min. in each room. "Something is better than nothing." "You are never behind." Now those words echo in my mind when I get discouraged.

And the miracle is, it doesn't take four solid hours a day! :D 15 min. here and there is all it takes, plus a few well established routines.

We're so glad you joined us! Welcome!

lgunnoe's picture

Most people with toddlers and new babies just don't keep totally clean or organized homes. We trip over duplo blocks, squish strained peas on the floor when we walk, and manage only every now-and-then to toss a stack of newspapers into the recycle bin!!! We read to our kids instead of dusting the lightbulbs and rock our babies instead of washing the woodwork.

FlyLady has a great program. I'm a "modified" Grand Plan cleaner myself, but it took me several years to get the program "just right" for my family. It also helps that our dds are old enough (14, and almost 10) to take care of their own rooms and bathroom, as well as help out with the "family areas." Hang in there....You'll get there all too soon!

I have to tell you this, too: my father was also an owner/operator, and gone for weeks at a time when I was young. I have absolutely NO recall of the cleanliness/messiness of our home, but what i do remember is the excitement in the air when we got that "I'll be home on Tuesday" phone call! It may feel like "crisis cleaning" to you, but your kids will only remember that "getting ready for Daddy" was a really big deal! It will be a pretty special memory at some point in the future for them.

Blessings,
Lenora
"Well behaved women rarely make history."
~Laurel Thatcher Ulrich

katie forbes's picture

I found this page trying to figure this all out myself. I have 4 children (ages 6,5,2 and two months). I have a very hard time keeping up with my house. It literally gets trashed over night and it is soooo discouraging but I keep trying and keep looking for new ideas. my biggest thing is clutter and I have found there are a lot of things that I can do without. I have been getting rid of as much as possible and sending everything to good will or our local "free place". This way everything I get rid of goes to someone who can use it. Anyway just wanted to let you know you are not the only one who has this problem.
Good luck ;)

jennye's picture

Katie, I'm a mother of 4 as well (5 if you want to count my hubby, who is just as bad as the kids when it comes to picking up. I'm not bashing him, that's just the way it is). Ages 12, 10, 7, and 4. It's HARD! Seems like it's picked up one minute then before I turn around BAM, it's a mess again! I've learned to live with their rooms the way they are, I go thru every few months and do a deep cleaning. The rest of the house stays fairly clean. I just have to lower my standards (or rather, my stepmother's high standards that I was raised with) a bit and rather than stress about it, just have fun with it.

Guest's picture

I am a mother of seven children (including twin boys) so I can identify with the families who struggle with clean houses. Instead of looking at your children as the problem, look at them as the solution. Your children can be your best house-cleaners and all with self-motivation!

Remember the sign on the kitchen that said, "This is a self-cleaning kitchen: Clean it yourself!" ?

My family has adopted this mantra and it creates a "self-cleaning" house. OK, not the grime, but certainly all the dishes, laundry, bedrooms, and clutter.

We call it "The Gotcha Game" and even 4 and 5 year olds can play it. It is a little too long to describe here, but go to my blog "The Classical Life" for details. (joanlandes.wordpress.com) It really works!

Guest's picture

I tried to find "the gotcha game" on your website with no success. I tried searching. I would really like to read about it to see if it would fit in my family. What is the best way to find it? Thank you.

Thomas And Raychel's picture

:O well i ran across this forun or post what ever you want to call it, searching for a way to help me and my wife to keep our apartment clean. She is 24 and i am 27 we have two little girls one year and 6 months. we both have lost our jobs and our vehicles are broke down. so needles to say we have nothing else to do but sit around the house and walk everywhere looking for jobs. our sleep time is so messed up cause the girls. but with nothing to do you would think our place would be immaculate but that is not he case. we keep saying to eachother that we are cleaning the house today but then we dont lol. any one relate. every time i start cleaning i wind up rearranging a room and it gets worse and stay that way for months. i guess i am just talking thank you for the helps here

Guest's picture

I myself struggle with a clean house but not by choice, but I think I've found a solution too. Briefly to describe, find an inspirational que. Clean as you go. Make it a self race.Reward yourself. Find the joy once it's done. Have family help at same time. I'm sure everyone is with me when I say sometimes you look at a room and feel so overwhelmed that you don't know where to start. Your brain literally shuts down because all it see's is a mess. Recently I moved in with my brother, and I have a 6 yr old and just had a now 2 month old. The amount of clothes children need are incredible, as they get dirty so many times a day. My 2 mo old spits up over everything so he's changed at least 5x's, plus all the towels, spit up towel, blankets (phew). my 6 yr old loves to play outside, play in the water, she changes at least twice if not more in a day. Laundry is crazy, and worst thing is I can do laundry all day long, same thing with dishes, no problem. Putting them away is another story because it just seems theres always something else that needs to be done more and its hard for me to -just sit- while I fold though ive tried watching shows. Once folded, the putting away just kills me with all the trips to rooms. Worse, my daughter just literally pulls -everything- out from her drawers till she finds what she wants, the rest end up on the floor which we are working on but hard to do when not watched. She does the same with toys which end up all over the house. Ontop of it, my brother really is not clean and is just fine living in dirt, filth and even his dogs urine. This leaves me with 3 to clean up after. To top it off, if I do not clean and he cant find something, it may be his fault, but to my brother, if I clean (even if the object was -not- in the room cleaned) and he looks for something that is not there, he complains about how when Im not there he can always find things just fine, which I know for a fact is not true as he and my father -both- have the 'loosing everything' issue.(To resolve this everything I clean of his goes to just ONE spot, a shelf but it could be a box to give -him- to put away, or a drawer.At least I know -I- didn't make him lose it. :)
**So, my solution has become the most important thing...CLEAN AS YOU GO. I'm so serious, it helps out a ton. Every couple days, do a quick floor pickkup in livingroom and vacuum, or quick sweep. When I'm cooking, say french toast, i used to use a timer but dont need to, I would put the toast in, then wash 3-5 dishes. then i'd flip, wash 3-5 more. I'd keep washing while I was cooking, but once food was done I stopped the dishes even if they werent done. Then after dinner when its time to wash dishes every other day, there weren't very many too do and it wasn't a huge chore. Same thing if I was going to the bathroom, I'd grab just a couple things to quickly put away. Walking in the living room i'd grab a few things from the coffee table, or floor. You'd be suprised with how many times you walk in and out of a room that your small cleanups can make a huge change. FIND AN INSPRIRATIONAL QUE. It is said that if you do something repititiously at least one a day for 90 days, your brain will remember it automatically and cause you to do it automatically. Find your que to start cleaning, something that when heard, or done, tells you "Yay, cleaning time!" (Yes, it will become a 'yay') This can be anything, mine is music because my schedule doesn't allow a set 'time.' So my que is turning on music and I would always start with the same song. Perhaps yours is Eye of the Tiger, or Black Eyed Peas, or Metalica, maybe some DMX. Whatever your music, play that same song to start and then go to whatever other music you like, even the radio. Another que could be perhaps an alarm set to go off at 11am on your day off signallin cleaning time. Or a large chime clock that chimes the hours. MAKE IT A SELF RACE. Why take an hour, two hours or more to leisurely walk around doing chores unless you really like it? If not, keep in mind when you start that you have something else important to do afterward, like a tv show to watch or to relax (yes, important) The -faster- you get chores done, the faster you can relax. If you make it a race to do everything as quickly as possible, it takes no time at all which makes your mind less unwilling to do it next time. It's true. If you see me cleaning you see me whipping into one room, usually the livingroom, then the bathrooms, then the kitchen, then bedrooms.I choose a different day for laundry and dishes as they take a while and are more of a daily or every other day thing. **!!BIG TIP!!** When you clean a room, start with the floor. If you have a coffee table or counter with crumbs, start there, but then immediatly pick up and put everything away on the floor (I make 'piles' of things that go to same room, so daughters toys end up in a pile by stairs to go up to her room.My daughter has a desingnated play area in living room that toys are not allowed to go out of and it has its own smaller toy 'box' to put away, but sometimes toys from upstairs come down too. Also a pile for garage things that go near garage door etc, kitchen things just go to a counter in kitchen. Then after I clean livingroom I put the 'piles' away, not just in a room but to their organized designated drawer or place) So back to the room you are cleaning, after you've picked up all the objects in the room, vacuum/mop. You will see a HUGE difference in how clean the room looks just with that and it will inpire you to finish cleaning the shelves etc in that room. Once done with that room, ZOOM into the next room (remember, it's a race!! :) ) Lastly, REWARD YOURSELF AND FIND JOY IN THE ROOM. Give yourself a treat, a tiny candy, a tv show that you raced to finish cleaning before it came on(Great inspiration), and remember everytime you walk in the room to actually LOOK at the room and find joy in the clean you just created. Human beings are tidy creatures, we like the joy in simplicity and open areas. Find a plastic bin, plastic container, or a drawer for each thing you own and get rid of things you don't use. This creates less 'clutter', as clutter is the thing that shuts our brains down...even a clean house with a whole bunch of knick knacks all over can shut our brain down. Speedy clean and you'll have a lasting clean house.

DamaMSmith's picture

Wow, you sound so much like me and my daughter. She cleans like a whiz but has too much stuff, me I was perfectionist when my kids were growing up somehow I manage a fairly clean home. My deal every time I went through a room and seen something out place I would take it there or as you said make a pile. My daughter on the other hand and three kids have baskets every where, she will throw everything in a basket and then sort it when she has time, she is a working mother. I am 55 and have a disability and just wanted to see if there were any ways to make my cleaning easier for me. I really love this! Because all you girls made me laugh. The thing is I love
a spotless home but wished I had spent more time with my kids. Do your best girls, but enjoy family first. Hey any of you girls have an idea for a pack rat husband??? I am wanting to simplify my life and he keeps bring in stuff, free stuff, freinds give him etc...I am going to turn my daughter on to this site. I think she would love it, and when I have time I have a few hints of my own...Happy clean Homes Girls!!!

ELISE's picture

I FEEL YOUR PAIN. IT CAN BE SO DAUNTING. I'VE FOUND THE THING THAT HELPS ME IS CONSIDERING THE CHORES AS AN ACT OF LOVE. AS IN "LOVE THYSELF". IF I MEDITATE ON THE THOUGHT THAT KEEPING OUR HOME CLEAN AND UNCLUTTERED WHILE I'M WORKING IS PART OF TAKING CARE OF MY EMOTIONAL HEALTH IT BOOSTS ME UP AND KEEPS ME GOING. NO HURRY ABOUT IT, NO STRESSING ABOUT THE TIME IT TAKES. NO PERFECTION THOUGH EITHER. JUST A PART OF MAKING IT A LOVING HOME. I DUST, KEEP AFTER POSSIBLE CLUTTER, DO THE DISHES, CLEAN THE TOILET, VACUUM, ALL THAT, BECAUSE WHEN ITS DONE, THAT ATMOSPHERE KEEPS ME COMFORTABLE. GIVES ME PEACE.

nanaya's picture

:) This is a great Quote, I have never thought of cleaning my home this way. After reading this quote it gives me hope and a sense of peace and I will use this technique when I am cleaning my home. I am a perfectionist and my home is fairly clean but with two young children it gets messy pretty fast my kitchen and living room are always clean most of the time but like most others on this site the rooms and laundry are always a mess and finding the motivation to clean sometimes can be difficult and I procrastinate until I get fed up and just do a major clean which tires me out and then I dread my next cleaning session.

Bejalady's picture

I just googled "how can I finally get organized and hae a clean house?" just out of frustration.

It's not that I don't know how - I have read so many books - great books. I have listened to tapes, watched dvds, etc... I did start the flylady site - and it was great while I had time - but then I started getting overwhelmed with all the emails from them. I loved listening to the podcasts from flylady - and watching the videos - but there weren't enough of them. So - I'm in the slump again - feeling like nothing has worked...

But, just so happens that the church down the street from me, Evangelical Free of Fullerton, is offering this summer a "Declutter" class - a six week study of the book "Clutter's Last Stand" by Don Aslett. It is $25, and I think maybe what I'm missing is the camaraderie of other 'messies' like myself. I need the moral support, and I need to actually see how other people do it. I have the head knowledge - a huge bibliography from which to pull from -- it's just making it become a real part of who I am that I have trouble with. If I were a computer, I would say to just re-format the hard drive!!!

Anyway, my two cents' worth: try a group approach. But for heaven's sake, make sure there is an organized leader (or at least a truly reformed messie person), or it will just turn into a fun free-for-all where everybody laughs and drinks coffee, then forgets what they're supposed to do when they get home!

Gina's picture

:grin: I have 2 kids ages 1 & 3, my house can be torn inside out upside down and backwards in 2 seconds, even while i'm cleaning, but I am happy to say that I have decluttered my home and came up with a quick and easy solution, I take a laundry basket and slide it through the house and pick up all the dirty laundry laying around, dump it in the laundry room, then I take that same basket and throw all the toys in it and put them in the kids toy bins, then I take a garbage bag and get all the garbage laying around, get all the dishes in the dishwasher, all the shoes put away, do a swiffer sweep/mop, and the house looks "company ready" quickly.

ME-2's picture

[quote=Gina]:grin: I have 2 kids ages 1 & 3, my house can be torn inside out upside down and backwards in 2 seconds, even while i'm cleaning, but I am happy to say that I have decluttered my home and came up with a quick and easy solution, I take a laundry basket and slide it through the house and pick up all the dirty laundry laying around, dump it in the laundry room, then I take that same basket and throw all the toys in it and put them in the kids toy bins, then I take a garbage bag and get all the garbage laying around, get all the dishes in the dishwasher, all the shoes put away, do a swiffer sweep/mop, and the house looks "company ready" quickly.[/quote]

NOW THIS IS A TIP ONE COULD USE. THANK YOU.

Guest's picture

love ur laundry basket idea! trying it in the am!!!! just figured out a map for financial peace last month with a dave ramsey book(total money makeover!) i have$800 saved in emergency fund and on way to paying down cc debt!i have never saved a dime for the entire 12 yrs ive been married. simple plan for everyday working ppl. now for tackling the house chores!!!! if anyone knows a Map to success other than flylady....pls advise. !!!! overwhelmed with kids stuff & just pplain messes.!!!!! i loooooove entertaining!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! i c ant have anyone even best friends or my mom stop over for a coffee...i have soooo much cleaning to do everytime!! its positivly ridiculous!!! help! again gina that idea is simple enough for me to get. the floor is always the worst part(kids 5 & 6) husband is worst offender!!!!!

Guest's picture

keeping a clean and orderly home is really much easier than you give yourself credit for. It's the absolute self that gives you space to breathe.

First of all determine what would make your home appealing for you.

What and where in your home break down what you want to accomplish, and what do you want to do in that space. Even if it's a comprimised space.

Children's toy's and play things should be kept out of that place, and adult time established,and organized. Children enjoy being made responsible for their items, and designated time..it will become a habit...and save you time.

Once that's determined, really think where can I go for my Mom Cave experience? and where I can make his his Man Cave experience.,To develop the slow down part of the day...a place for both of you to begin retrieve...

There is a lot of simple ways to break down and organize that space..so that your home, humble, and carefree space, easily to assemble, keep in charge, and clean.

Think Space...and let's break that down first...

Guest's picture

I am so happy I found all of you!! :) Before I had kids my house was always clean actually my friends and family NEVER saw my house even a little bit messy...lol Well now 3 kids and 7 years later I dont know whats wrong with me!!! I read though several of the commets from above and got tears in my eyes because I realized I am not alone!!!!! :grin: I am so tired all day long with so many responsibilities I get very overwelmed very easily!! I am a stay at home mom, my husband works long hours running a large constuction site. We have 3 kids (7.5, 5 and 2 ) 3 dogs, 4 cats, chickens, 2 horses plus a couple furry little critters in a cage.... :P lol And caring for them all is lil ol me!! Dont get me wrong I Love Love Love my kids and all our furry friends but its allot to keep up with!! :O Anyways enough with my complaining!!!! lol After doing some reading I feel motivated to get organized and clean!! And the first thing I think I will do is make a list, Thanks to all youo ladies who shared your story you have helped me ALLOT!!! :)

Guest's picture

I used to believe I was a "messie" and hopelessly disorganized. But a friend introduced me to a book titled "Sidetracked Home Executives" by Pam Young and Peggy Jones. It taught me how to get organized and to keep a clean home. It really works!!!

macie hicks's picture

I got married back in 2010 to a wonderful man named nate but he is the clean one in the house... lolz... i can clean all day long and he comes in saying why aint this done??? what did you do all day??? and on top of him hurting my feelings i get mad and as we all know; that never fixes anything. i need help seeing the messes he sees or something? lolz... thanks for letting me vent. and please help if you have any ideas!

ladysteele's picture

so i have an almost 3 yr old ds and i am a sahm. my husband works nights so we really only see him on the weekends. by the time he gets home we are long since asleep and when we get up he is in bed for the afternoon till work. so i try and try to keep my head above water with my housework but it seems whenever i am able to get serious cleaning done that is the times my ds decides he must cling to mommy (usually i barely exsist unless i need to do something then im all he sees lol) and at first i wanted my home wonderful for the weekends for him but i would also enjoy it being nice for me and my ds. i cant keep the livingroom floor clear i have conceeded to that as my ds must have toys out ALL THE TIME so i pick up after he goes to bed but laundry is heck!!!!! its all clean i just never have time to sort and fold and hang and put away as my hubs is in bed during the day and after my son goes to bed im soo tired myself. i LOVE the idea of this site!!!! i hope to make friends and learn ALOT!!!

Guest Keyauna Lee's picture

Hi im a 29yrs old house wife and I feel like my husband and children don't appreciate me. before marrying my husband I kept a clean home. I had 3 children before I met him now we have 4 children all together and my home is a mess.I don't like it one bit.I try to do all the cleaning by myself but I found myself having break downs because it never seems to get clean.I ask my hubby to do his part
but he does it months after I have asked.once I tried to go on strike and the house got so bad that I had to give in. Having no help is starting to affect my health.What should I do?

Lynn's picture

Flylady and/or hired help. Flylady doesn't work for everyone, but she does work for a lot of people. And tell your husband that he can help you or you'll hire help.

SMe's picture

With two kids and making everything work is a bit of hard work. Finding time to cook as well as clean,clear and look after two kids, seems to take all day. I used to feel guilty about not maintaining an orderly space, but now I try and not feel guilty, and clear as much clutter as I can at least once a week.

I am in awe of all of you ladies with more than two kids and having a routine clearing everyday, it doesn't matter if it isn't picture perfect as long as it works for your family.

AbbyK's picture

We just listed our house and need to purge and keep the place show ready. It feels like my life has been changed out of necessity. I don't know how I'll do after we move but I really want to keep up with the clean house. I am learning a lot on what to do right away to keep things in order.

Nynancy's picture

OMG! The original post is me plus a few of the others combined! I have 3 kids, ages 8,7 and 6. Plus I usually count my hubby as one too cuz I am expected to clean after him too. He works long hrs so I am responsible for it ALL. I am overwhelmed, under appreciated, stressed and depressed. I can't keep up with it all and would never let anyone in my home for sheer embarrassment. I have also read and researched many books, magazines and websites for advice. I am such a perfectionist that if it can't be done perfectly it either doesn't get finished and is a bigger mess or won't get done at all till I think "I'll tackle that when I get the time" and that never happens. We just moved to a new home 9 months ago and still haven't finished unpacking cuz I already have such a mess I cannot bring myself to bring anymore stuff into the house. So I have the rest of my house still stuffed in the garage. I just don't know what to do anymore. I catch so much crap from my mother in law. She only had one child so she doesn't understand how hard it is to keep up with 3 kids all a yr apart. I don't have the money to hire someone to help. I wish. I have piles of clean, wrinkled clothes in baskets. Always at least 2-3 loads of dishes ready for the dishwasher. I feel depleted and frustrated. I can never find anything and have no help. I am alone. Both my parents are dead and my husband works long hours and doesn't understand how hard it is. I bust my a** cleaning and then by the time he gets home it's a mess and he thinks I just sit around all day. He works 80 hrs a week. I need a plan. I had no role models of cleaning growing up and moved out at 15 so I will take any advice. I also tried flylady but I can't keep up with the emails either. Thx for letting me vent. I hope I can soon find some kind of solution.

Guest's picture

Stop being lazy would be the best bet. I don;t have kids, but I work full time. As soon as I get off work, I have 4 dogs, 5 cats, 2 snakes, and a hamster to take care of. After that, I do SOME cleaning, then I treat myself to some gaming/TV until my girlfriend gets home. Don't tackle it all at once, clean some and take a break... Then get back to it.

Guest's picture

[quote=Guest]Stop being lazy would be the best bet. I don;t have kids, but I work full time. As soon as I get off work, I have 4 dogs, 5 cats, 2 snakes, and a hamster to take care of. After that, I do SOME cleaning, then I treat myself to some gaming/TV until my girlfriend gets home. Don't tackle it all at once, clean some and take a break... Then get back to it.[/quote]

Maybe when you have a few kids close together, then come back and comment. It's not laziness at all. You have no idea what it's like! Read some of the other posts and you will see that it's not just women but also men that are dealing with these same issues. Have some compassion, please. We all deal with enough guilt

Hurt's picture

[quote=Guest]Stop being lazy would be the best bet. I don;t have kids, but I work full time. As soon as I get off work, I have 4 dogs, 5 cats, 2 snakes, and a hamster to take care of. After that, I do SOME cleaning, then I treat myself to some gaming/TV until my girlfriend gets home. Don't tackle it all at once, clean some and take a break... Then get back to it.[/quote]

You have never walked one day in my or any other persons on this forums shoes. In fact, you shouldn't even be commenting since you have no children. I feel sorry for your girlfriend. If you get married and have kids, she will experience what all of us here experience but she has you, who is missing a compassion chip, to deal with. This forum is for people to express themselves w/out judgement from people like you. You owe me and everyone else here an apology but I'm sure that would never happen. So go play your video games and come back when you have had some more life experience please.

anatidaeV's picture

Terribly sorry, but I think the commenter simply meant that his method of housecleaning is to take it a bit at time. It is good to get another view. I moved in with my partner, and it turns out working two full time jobs takes up more time than we thought it would! I finished university a year ago and he took this year off to work full time, so it is our first experience at being "adults". I have to say, though I don't have children these tips are great for someone just learning to have a household!

[quote=Hurt][quote=Guest]Stop being lazy would be the best bet. I don;t have kids, but I work full time. As soon as I get off work, I have 4 dogs, 5 cats, 2 snakes, and a hamster to take care of. After that, I do SOME cleaning, then I treat myself to some gaming/TV until my girlfriend gets home. Don't tackle it all at once, clean some and take a break... Then get back to it.[/quote]

You have never walked one day in my or any other persons on this forums shoes. In fact, you shouldn't even be commenting since you have no children. I feel sorry for your girlfriend. If you get married and have kids, she will experience what all of us here experience but she has you, who is missing a compassion chip, to deal with. This forum is for people to express themselves w/out judgement from people like you. You owe me and everyone else here an apology but I'm sure that would never happen. So go play your video games and come back when you have had some more life experience please.[/quote]

Guest's picture

You have some kids with a husband who's gone all the time! It's very frustrating ooh I work the big full time job yea as a mom my job is never done u get to relax I don't I feel for Ur gf I hope Ur nice to her if u ever do have kids it's not easy with everything moms do and lazy men take for granted

Guest Jenni's picture

Did you or did you not chose to have children? You cannot complain about something that you likely begged your husband for. You are using your children as an excuse. There is always some reason or another not the clean. But my grandmother had 6 children ( 1 she lost to cancer at 6 years old) her husband drove a truck cross country. She canned, gardened, froze, could sew, knit, washed clothes and dishes by hand, and kept up with everything the kids did. Maybe you should raise the kids with some discipline and some consistency and they wouldn't be an excuse for you any more. It is laziness, you chose to do other things than clean, everyone is guilty of that at some point.

The point of this post is to find ways of making cleaning easier to mentally handle and yes to stop being lazy about it.
I work 40-100 hrs a week, am the only one who drives in my family, and my fiance works part time and goes to college, I handle all of the bills, most of the house work and I am not blaming others, I know I get lazy and tired and it gets messy.

Do something proactive instead of bashing someone for not having children, children are hard but they are not the only difficult thing in peoples live. IE I work as a first responder and my job lets me in a on the most disgusting awful pieces of human life that make you want to take a scalding shower and never come out, then come home (after a 8-14 hr work day some times 7-9 days a week) and STILL have to do the laundry, walk the dog, and cook.
So children are hard, but have you ever worked a job like that? No? Then stop comparing and playing the one up game when you don't know the rules.

If your children are messy and take all of your time why are you on the internet instead of cleaning it up?

Guest's picture

I totally agree! If you have the kids, husband, job etc. you are responsible for the upkeep of all of them! My children were always clean and well cared for. My house was and is spotless and I also had pets who were the same! If you love your husband and kids you should show them by giving them a happy, healthy clean environment to live in! They should never have to be embarrased to bring over a friend, coworker or relative![quote=Guest Jenni]Did you or did you not chose to have children? You cannot complain about something that you likely begged your husband for. You are using your children as an excuse. There is always some reason or another not the clean. But my grandmother had 6 children ( 1 she lost to cancer at 6 years old) her husband drove a truck cross country. She canned, gardened, froze, could sew, knit, washed clothes and dishes by hand, and kept up with everything the kids did. Maybe you should raise the kids with some discipline and some consistency and they wouldn't be an excuse for you any more. It is laziness, you chose to do other things than clean, everyone is guilty of that at some point.

The point of this post is to find ways of making cleaning easier to mentally handle and yes to stop being lazy about it.
I work 40-100 hrs a week, am the only one who drives in my family, and my fiance works part time and goes to college, I handle all of the bills, most of the house work and I am not blaming others, I know I get lazy and tired and it gets messy.

Do something proactive instead of bashing someone for not having children, children are hard but they are not the only difficult thing in peoples live. IE I work as a first responder and my job lets me in a on the most disgusting awful pieces of human life that make you want to take a scalding shower and never come out, then come home (after a 8-14 hr work day some times 7-9 days a week) and STILL have to do the laundry, walk the dog, and cook.
So children are hard, but have you ever worked a job like that? No? Then stop comparing and playing the one up game when you don't know the rules.

If your children are messy and take all of your time why are you on the internet instead of cleaning it up?[/quote]

Ms.Brisby's picture

when the cats let the hamster swim in the toilet, then track broken blush across tile and carpet, and the dogs and snake fingerpaint on your walls with condiments, I might take your post a little more seriously. It sound like you have some grand ideas, but I'd love for you to post when you have a family. Unless your girlfriend is going to take care of it all. Then I'd like to hear from her.

Guest Jenni's picture

Solution... put make up out of reach and no unsupervised paint time. Also lock the pets cage and teach kindness to animals before you get them. If you aren't watching them that's when the problems start, and if you stay at home and cant supervise them then maybe you didn't need so many kids.

Guest's picture

:) O wow! U are me!! :D

Dee ray's picture

I have noticed over the years that women are afraid to let another see how they keep house which adds to our overwhelming pressure of it needing to be done. Why do we have to have it look like the magazine anyways? Why is it healthier to teach the next generation that we clean because we are expecting someone, or that we have to live with anxiety from our un-realistic image we are to uphold. Are we less than because majority of households with children keep their homes as is?

With that said there is not much better than a clean house, but I guess I decided somewhere down the line that if I am stressing out to do the upkeep than I quit. Now if I am stressing because the lack of, than I am all in! Sometimes my home is a mess and other times it looks nice. If I am expecting someone the house remains as is. With the exception of available space, I do have to accommodate. :)

Guest's picture

So i am a stay at home mom of 4! Three boys 7,8,9 and girl 2. My house used to be immaculate but the 4th one put me over the edge! I cannot keep up, everything is sticky, food all over kitchen floor, carpet stained from baby bottle, and lost power for over a week due to storm so laundry is litterlt spilling out of the laundry room! Hubby owns nis own company andworks 100+ a week. Sometimes he takes off sundays. He has ocd and its a constant battle about thehouse, especially since it was awyas spotless. He helps out when hes home and the kids help alot, but not as much as whsn hubby is here. He doesnt even yell but they practically ignore me sometimes. I am deprssed,unmotivated and just dont care anymore! How sad is that! I have no family to help, mom is practically my child, dad in another state,mil from hell! I need a break! Anywayi hae decided i am going to have a yard sale! Each day i am putting things in garage and waiting until ive gone threw entire house.from the profits i have a ton or ideas from pintrest and im going to buy everything to organize! Hope this works ill let u know how i make out. Anf its nice to know im not alone so feel free to contact me and thanks for letting me vent!!

Guest's picture

Keeping house is WORK! So, make sure you have the energy before you start or you will be so frustrated that you will give up and look a it as a hopeless cause.

My first wife (now deceased) raised 5 children 2 were twins. The house was always kept clean. BUT, she WORKED at it. You cannot do all this social stuff on the computer and always be on the cell phone and expect to get the house work done.

My son and daughter in law are great examples of what I am saying. She is constantly texting or when she gets home making excuses as to why she can't keep house because of the 2 children and is overweight. He is just lazy about being neat but has the ability and energy. So, the combination is a lose lose.

You can't use the words "you don't understand" or "you haven't been there". They are EXCUSES for not doing the house work not REASONS.

Women (and men) suck it up. Keep the place where you live clean by working at it and if it is still too much live in a tent.

Guest Jenni's picture

I liked your post. The excuses on that forum were enough to make me leave. No real solutions to cleaning easier from the housewives who don't understand full time job( 40-100 hrs a week) + housework is actually harder than just being a housewife and they need to "suck it up"

Pauline0336's picture

When I walk into my house, I want to turn back around and run to the nearest hotel. My house looks like no one lives there. I am 28 years old. I go to school full time, and im married with 3 girls (2, 5, 7). At one point I was working and going to school until I got laidoff this summer, which was to me God saying "your doing more than enough. My husband has two jobs, he drives a truck for one company and an armor on the weekends for another company. He claims he's just trying to build up his account so that we could by a building (but thats another story) ;) Anywazzz.... My home house is a complete diaster from hell. There is cloths everywhere in the house. There are clean cloths mixed with dirty clothes lying about the stairs, hall, dresser, bathroom, closet, even kitchen. there's dishes under the bed in every room, (3 bedrooms) there is always something spilled or getting spilled, the floor is sticking and sometimes even wet (dnt knw why) :? There is left over food stuck to the table and even stuck on the chair, Dishes on the stove, in the sink, even some in the microwave with old meatloaf stains from the roof to the tray. The bathroom have tooth paste stains on the sink and floor, the toliet bowl will make you vomit :sick: and the tub is cluttered with my kids toys. My house does not feel like a home unless its clean which is raley and even when I clean it, its back worst than before. So why do I feel cursed??? Believe it or not, I stay cleaning up my house, from the momment I get in the house I wash dishes, while at the same time cooking, and helping both my kids with their homework. My 2 year old is tugging on my pants screaming "MOMMY I BOO BO" seems like if she could say that much she could go to the toilet (yeah I thought the same thing :? ) So I am a multi-tasker. I run around like a chicken with my head off doing 20 things at once with high demands.I am always rushing, especially in the morning. I rush leaving the house, and I rush entering back in. I must be driving my kids crazy :O I know Im driving myself coco. After a long and hard day of work, I still see absolutely no results. I wonder if God is mad at me, or if im being punked by the angels lbvs :grin: It is really stressful to put in 24hr hard work and not see anything get done. I am so dizzy from spinning around and around on a roller coster of work. I feel like a slave to my kids, husband, and my home, the very thing that makes me happy also makes me very sad. The very thing that keeps me sane also makes me go insain. I've prayed, I've purged, I've moved, and still same owe same owe. Pray for me, pray to God that this curse be removed cause I have never been a pig and dont like living like one. I worry that my kids may too pick up this bad habbit as I see them doing so now. I dont know what to do or where to start :(

Rose Anne's picture

I stopped myself from trying to do 20 things at once (and never finishing even one thing)!
Here is what I did:
I decided that I would do the daily stuff (cooking, dishes, caring for the children and I would put in 30 minutes a day putting a dent in the "big mess." I started with the bathroom. I used the Flylady site for ideas. It took me a week to get the bathroom clean and organized (including closet and cabinet) but it got 100% done.
I refused to even think of the rest of the messy house; I just did the bathroom,
Now every AM I do DM(Daily Maintenance) on the bathroom. It takes 2 minutes using the Flylady way. My best investment was a box of blue surgical disposable gloves. I use them and they are cheap!

Lime-Away will clean the inside of any toilet..that is what landlords use.

The next week I started on the kitchen. I started with the floor.It took me a full week to get rid of the dull brown glaze from using that blue plastic-bottled floor shiner/cleaner....I used generic blue window washer fluid and a scrub brush.

I felt like a nerd sitting in a lawn chair doing about a 2 foot square a night but it got done.

I found out that the only way out of the mess is to start somewhere and totally focus on that job until it is done.

From what you posted, I suggest that you and the kids do the half hour together on Saturday AM and start with garbage bags for dirty clothes from every room and a laundry basket for dirty dishes. It's putting a dent in the mess.

pauly d 's picture

:) my husband works on cell phone towers and is not home during the week and sometimes gone for 2 weeks at a time . i started off one of those mothers who cleaned all day everyday and quickly relized "this is crap " ! i was overwhelmed everyday and very tired with no outsid etime for my kids or myself . so i make a list for the week of my top 10 prioritys and cross off 1-3 items per day . you will definitly feel like you have done something with your day without it consuming your day . i am not running a boot camp here so i dodnt want to be the mom that is always yelling at people because they are not superstar clean by the time my husband gets home on friday the house is clean he is happy and i can spend time with him not worried i have 100 things to do in a day .

Guest's picture

Just a quick addition to the great comments. I recommend researching ADD/ADHD symptoms in adults. There is plenty of information out there to determine whether you would benefit from seeing a medical professional. I have taken stimulant meds for years now (mother of 4 boys) and although the meds don't solve all my problems, my life is SIGNIFICANTLY better because of them.

Guest's picture

I am a mother of 3 girls. The youngest is back at home and soon to turn 24. She is a responsible and sweet girl, pays her bills, likes nice things and is totally involved in her church and youth groups. Here is the problem, it is like pulling teeth to get her involved in cleaning the house, even the basic upkeep. I leave lists for her and how often it needs to get done and they get done once and never again. I have to say that I am 51 and work full time in a very physical job and being that it is 2nd shift I have time during the day to myself to get things done but all I seem to get done are the everyday basics for me which comes down to dishes, trash, litter boxes,bathtub,and toilet. To do much more before work overwhelms me. I also am trying to turn my AAS degree into a BS so you can see that my time is tight. I have been told by my friends that it is just because she is my babygirl and I have spoiled her that is why I get now help. On top of that one of my 3 cats is indoors and is schizophrenic and 12 years old and has taken to destroying my wood floors systematically. Putting her down is not an option for me(my daughter or the cat). I get up everyday to some sort of destruction. I am just tired. I have gotten to the point where I don't have visitors anymore I am so embarrassed. I am on a downward spiral, I really want to get everything clean and organized, but lack time, energy, and help.

Ms.Brisby's picture

Firstly, congrats on continuing your education! My mother got her college degree in her 50's and I'm VERY proud of her accomplishment. You post caught my eye because of the mirror to my own situation. Part of the reason I'm here is because I know my mother has similar feelings to you. Perhaps you may listen, where she does not...

Though your frustration about your daughter's behavior may be well-grounded, she is an adult, not a child. By leaving notes and treating her like a child, you are, however unintentionally, showing her that you don't see her as the responsible WOMAN that she is. If your family dynamics are as similar to mine as they seem, her neglect of the home setting may be a passive show of her anger/frustration. Chances are she loves and respects you very much, but doesn't see that you value her efforts.

If you want to see a change in her behavior, then you need to treat her like you want her to act. She may always be your little girl, but she is an adult, and it's insulting to have another adult leave you a list of how they want you do clean your home. Respect that she may have other plans/visions of how things should be. Sit down and speak with her like you would a roommate and come up with a plan TOGETHER.

Guest Jenni's picture

If she isn't cleaning your house its a sign she needs to move out or that she has moved out and is used to taking care of herself. I did this to my mother and my reasoning was that I cleaned up everything... after myself... its your house and your mess that you need to take care of not mine. I did my own laundry, cooked my own food, and cleaned dishes with them... all while working full time and living at home. But she said I didn't clean... I didn't clean up after her my little sister and my dad. My dog was walked and fed and bathed (i even bathed hers) my room and bathroom were clean. I was able to take care of myself, so we got into arguments, and I was trying to explain at that age I am a roommate not a child. So I moved out at 21 and now I worry about my own house, even more when my mother in law makes surprise visits.

brenna's picture

i too stumbled on this by searching 4 organization help ! ur post made me cry... i couldnt have written my life journal better myself ! help ! we are foster parents and range anywhere between 4 and 10 small children @ a time... i am burried, and cant dig my way out alone : ( ... when the caseworker is coming, im tossing things into rooms i know she wont visit ... i am a horder, but 4 good reason... i like to give. is that an excuse, or a reason? lol... we have too much of everything, and i have a hard time purging... be it cus someone can use it, or because i lost everything in a fire before... ? i dont know, but i gotta get it together... how many of grammas things do we keep? i so loved my grammy... but i think she purged to me, so she could have a spotless house, lol... gonna chk out links, thanks for sharing all !

Misty's picture

:O
Hi-
I myself am Obsessive about cleaning my home. I have a 3 year old and a 5 month old as well. Seems as if the job is never fully completed, like ever. My husband also have two older kids who have habits of constant disarray.Just remember it is difficult to make things perfect all the time, especially when your home is actually lived in, joking. Just try and routine yourself to placements and make sure those objects stay in that place when not in use. Draws, tubs, labels, toy boxes, schedules all help the most. Make sure your flexible to change with kids, but teach them early in make a great deal of difference.

Ms.Brisby's picture

I'm a 34yo single mom of one with a disabled "messie" mother that lives with me. OCD runs in my family to extreme degrees I've never been diagnosed, but I show many symptoms of adult ADD on top of the OCD. I work full time third shift. The state of my home is a constant source of friction, and all parties are responsible. My mother and I go through this song and dance of effort and blame. I found this site looking for a solution, and I was brought to tears by step one. My grandmother is a "cleanie" and extremely OCD. One thing she has NEVER been able to do is go to sleep with anything in the sink. I have reservations because of the extreme desire NOT to give in to my OCD impulses, however, obviously grandma was on to something. I've never seen things out of place in her home.

Guest's picture

You sound just like me! I'm also the wife of a truck driver. I have two daughters ages 10 and 12, and I homeschool. My husband is gone 4 to 5 days per week. I hate cleaning and would much rather be doing anything else. Yet, when I let the house get dirty and messy, I get stressed out and overwhelmed and never want to have anyone over because I'm embarrassed. It causes lots of anxiety for me. And just like you, I try to cram months worth of cleaning into a day or two, which kills me. It's a never-ending cycle. I don't have solutions or suggestions for you, but I just want you to know that I completely relate to you and understand exactly how you feel and what you struggle with because I struggle with the EXACT same things. I literally thought you were in my head when I read your post. Hang in there!

Eric's picture

I have the same style of motivation - it is called "away-from" motivation instead of "toward" motivation. In other words, you are not motivated to clean by the feelings and mental pictures of HAVING a clean and organized home in your future. You are instead only motivated to clean and organize when stuff piles up and becomes enough of a problem that exists in your present. It's an "away from too much pain until I hit a neutral equilibrium" versus "towards lots of pleasure". It pretty much means "chronically messy house" when we ONLY get motivated in this fashion.

Motivational styles are primarily the reason that some people are super-successful and some are barely scraping by. Their motivational styles are completely opposite.

Go-getters and Achievers are DOERS not just PLANNERS (of empty promises) and endless LIST-MAKERS of what they 'want' or 'need' to do sometime in the future like you and me. They see a crystal clear vision of the end and they race towards it with ACTION because they are rewarded by the accomplishment itself as well as the 'feel good' they get for doing something about -and then- reaching their goal.

If we FINALLY muster up enough willpower to reach the goal of cleaning house by pushing away from an overwhelmingly messy house, we are still not satisfied when the house is clean! Instead we say 'it's just going to be like the pig-sty it was in just a few days and I'll have to ATTEMPT to muster up large amounts of willpower to ATTEMPT it all over again'. Exhausting huh?

So, we suck at not only getting the place THAT clean, but also maintaining it. We'll wait until it begins to grate on us again (piles of laundry, stacks of paper, etc) and then the situation FINALLY gets bad enough to motivate us to do something about it.

Doesn't that SUCK?! I HATE IT!

Our vision of how we want things to be isn't strong because we've been fighting a mess for so long. Until we get REALLY CLEAR in our mind's eye about how we want our house to BE ALWAYS, and DO DO DO everything to get it there and then easily maintain it by staying in a "toward" motivational style, to make the vision and the PRESENT the same reality, we will struggle with motivation.

If you can think of anything in your life that you use a "toward" motivational style to accomplish, then the REASONS you are motivated to do whatever it is MAY help you overcome your "away from" style. Usually a "towards" style is linked with the PLEASURE you get from accomplishing the goal vs. just mitigating PAINFUL situations constantly.

Think of the difference small consistent steps will make in KEEPING the house looking sharp ALWAYS and how proud and pleased you can be because the house always looks fantastic, as opposed to allowing large chunks of time to go by before you actually DO something in response to a now messy house and how embarrassing and depressing that is.

It's not procrastination. It's just how you and I are motivated. We must do everything we can to focus on increasing the PLEASURE in our lives instead of trying to just decrease the pain. See the difference?

We must also become MUCH MORE SENSITIVE to the picture in our heads of how we want the house to BE, because in a big way, it is an extension of how we want OURSELVES TO BE. Otherwise, we'll let little things go again until they pile up into big things... you know what I mean!!

Momma G's picture

Hi! I have 3 little girls, 6, 3 & 1. I am always looking for organizing ideas and tips on keeping up the house. I found a few good tips here but also wanted to share a few that have helped us with containing our mess. Laundry basket in the main living area for shoes. The days of missing shoes are over! My 17 month old even knows where to find/put her shoes! Throw an occasional dryer sheet in with them for freshness! Another mess saver is a file box for everyone in the family - they stack nicely in a corner or closet. Any artwork or school papers you just can't toss goes directly in your box. Ottomans are wonderful for stashing the toys! No eating or drinking except in the kitchen or dining area! No exception! Force yourself to entertain at least once a month so you don't get overwhelmed with your mess!

Lynn's picture

Ha! That's what we do! :)

Guest's picture

I was raised to keep the house clean. Only child for 12 years. Mom and Dad worked full time. I can tell you, I did my best. Housework has got to be the dullest, most time-consuming, irritating thing in the world. But, I do it. As a result of the never-ending tedium associated with housework, I have learned to treasure the great outdoors. I will do just about anything out there. I try. My husband says I am the most unorganized person he knows. Well, that may be so, but supper gets put on the table every night. And the kitchen gets cleaned, (by me). I have aunts who have pristine clean homes anytime you walk through the door. Beats me.
Now what if we had to draw water from the well and wash our clothes against a washboard or rock? Or fire up the woodstove just to cook a little breakfast and coffee? It must be in our attitudes. I lived in a trailer home, (yes, that what I called it.) Because it was a home in my growing up years. You HAD to keep it neat and clean, because there was no space for messes. I think I was actually delighted to live in that trailer because
well, I did not have to clean a big old house. Yep, every Friday night/Sat. am was inspection time. And there was heck to pay if everything was not in order. My house these days is usually decent looking, but the closets and cabinets leave a lot to be desired. So, if somebody like myself who was made to do the cleaning growing up has problems as an adult with housework, I can see how it's a problem for a lot of women. It is a rather dull thing to be doing.

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