I recently had a baby in January and anyone that knows me knows that I will find any excuse not to have to do anything around the house so what was more perfect that “I just had a baby. I’m too tired to clean my house.”? Let me tell you how not smart that choice was. I was walking around my house dodging piles of dirty clothes, staring at a pile of dirty dishes in the sink, and watching dog hair drift in the breeze and realized I needed to make some changes. I couldn’t continue to live my life in lazy, disorganized chaos… things needed to change. So where do you begin when your entire house is a disaster? How do you begin the process of changing when every room in your house needs work and it’s almost an overwhelming feeling of “There is no way I’m going to fix this”? I’ll tell you how, you start at the beginning: do a 4X4 square until it is completely clean, you never handle something more than once, you pick one room and do it all, give yourself a time frame, have accountability that matters to you, and above all else DON’T STOP YOUR MOMENTUM!
I started this blog for accountability. When you have family yammering at you to clean your house you can pretty much tune them out and ignore the situation, but when you put your life out there for other people to become a part of you tend to hold yourself up to the challenge better, at least I do. So, to take my own advice my goal is to start in the front of the house and work my way to the back. This meaning we have a sun room that currently is in shambles due to it just now becoming spring time and it was used as the dumping ground for shoes, mud, salt (ice melt), dog food bags, and many other things. From there it is merely the process of each room: Front Bathroom, Living room, Master bedroom, hallway, Kitchen, Dining Room, Back bathroom, and kids room. My house does have an upstairs and will take a picture so you can better understand what’s going on, but for a short explanation the upstairs to the house is 20% complete…. that’s as good as it gets until I post the blog about that lol.
Next is since the weather is warming up, I also have the pleasure of owning a home with .75 acres of backyard and front yard. My goal is to work on each yard separately. My front yard is my primary goal since it’s what everyone sees when they drive by or come over. Fixing it up includes things like planting new flowers, cutting down some ugly stuff that is out there when we moved in, raking up the leaves from last fall (I leave them out there to keep my plants warm in the winter), burning leaves, and creating a beautiful landscape I’m proud of. All while motivating my husband to mow the lawn (something he is notorious for not doing).
So let’s review, when you start the process of cleaning up your house, whether you’re spring cleaning or changing your entire lifestyle like I am you have to choose where to start. I am choosing to start at the beginning of my house aka the front where people enter my home. It’s also the second or third smallest room in the house and a place where you can see the most change the fastest which always makes you feel good about yourself. You work in a 4×4 space doing everything you need to do to that space, while doing that you never pick something up and set it somewhere else only to have to pick it up again. That was the most sage advice my mother ever gave me. WHY would you exert more energy to move something two times when you can put it where it needs to go from the beginning and not worry about it again, plus it makes the next 4×4 or room that you move into that much easier to take care of. When I say pick a room and don’t stop till it is done, I mean DON’T stop till it’s done. For me this includes any renovations, painting, or decorating I want to do to that room. That means, have a plan for that room. Example, my sun room is going to be white and black with a hint of red so I need to plan for buying any furniture or carpet or area rug to match that. It doesn’t mean I won’t start cleaning another room when the sun room is clean, but it does mean I’m not buying for any other room till the sun room is complete and pulled together. I’ll be able to better show that off when I take pictures and do the “Sun Room Blog” lol. One of the most important things to do is give yourself a time frame. Don’t get to over the top like “I’ll have my entire house cleaned in a day” because that’s not going to happen. You will get overwhelmed and quit before you even get started. My time frame is a week to two weeks for each room depending on the size (keep in mind this includes painting and renovations to the rooms). That doesn’t mean I’m not going to do the dishes or have laundry going while I’m doing a different room, but it does mean that my primary focus is on the room I’m working on. Next, give yourself some sort of accountability. I’m giving myself several: my blog, my husband, and a few friends. That way I have a need to get it done. If no one is watching or caring you may not care either and personally it can’t be family because I can just tune it out. Your parent has been telling you to clean your room for years, you’re not going to want to listen to them tell you to clean your house as well. Finally, once you start don’t lose the momentum. You can be doing really great and get one or two rooms done but then take a week off and bam you’re back to not wanting to do anything period. Not a good place to be in. So don’t stop once you decide to start. It took me a few days to decide to start my blog, but now I have and I have to follow through or let myself down.
So, I hope you decide to follow me. Today was about setting the goals and making the plans for what I want to accomplish and giving you the tools to follow along. Tomorrow I start the sun room. Check back soon for progress on the house and starting April 28th I will be joining a gym and keeping a blog here about tracking weight loss as well as eating better and in general making the life changes I’ve set up for myself to do.