Spring cleaning all year

Chores that need to be done daily (washing dishes) or weekly (laundry or vacuuming) seem to provide us with a lot of visual reminders; we can see the dishes/clothes/dirt piling up.

The chores that need to be done less frequently- monthly, or even once or twice a year- never seem so urgent, until we’re having guests, or catch “spring cleaning fever.” Then, looking at all these chores together can be overwhelming.

To make it easier on yourself, divide up the chores and spread them around; schedule a little each week with the other regular chores.

Start with a list of all the “once in a while” chores. Some ideas to get you started:

  • appliances: clean the oven, behind & under the fridge,, small appliances such as the toaster
  • wipe down the shelves in the cupboards
  • move the furniture to vacuum beneath & behind
  • clean the light fixtures
  • wash the windows inside & out

Decide how often each job needs to be done.

If you like the idea of a set schedule, get a calendar and schedule one manageable chore per week. For instance, move the furniture in one bedroom to vacuum beneath & behind. Or, clean the oven. Or, clean the dining room light fixture.

Pad of Paper & Pen

If setting a specific time seems too rigid, get a set of index cards and write one chore on each card. Each week or two, set yourself a goal of finishing the chore on the top card, then move it to the bottom of the pile. This way, if you are unable to do a specific chore, it will not be forgotten, just postponed. This also gives you the option of “shuffling” if, for instance, rain stops you from washing those windows; just substitute a different card and the windows will show up next time.

Eventually, the jobs will all get done in rotation, but you won’t need to devote a week to “spring cleaning.”

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