Does “hey, I am coming over” immediately trigger you and send you into a cleaning frenzy?
Are you usually impressed by other people’s homes and their constant cleanliness?
As a top-notch OCD clean freak myself, I want to share with you all my daily cleaning habits that keep my home feeling fresh and mess-free at all hours. Rather than waiting until the last minute, by taking these small daily steps, you’ll be able to form a complete cleaning cycle that will guarantee a healthy and happy living space for all. Break the cycle of waiting last minute and start your journey today with beneficial habits that will stick with you for life.
According to the author of the New York Times bestseller, Atomic Habits,
“On average, it takes more than two months before a new behavior becomes automatic — 66 days to be exact. And how long it takes a new habit to form can vary widely depending on the behavior, the person, and the circumstances. In Lally’s study, it took anywhere from 18 days to 254 days for people to form a new habit. In other words, if you want to set your expectations appropriately, the truth is that it will probably take you anywhere from two months to eight months to build a new behavior into your life — not 21 days. Interestingly, the researchers also found that “missing one opportunity to perform the behavior did not materially affect the habit formation process.” In other words, it doesn’t matter if you mess up every now and then. Building better habits is not an all-or-nothing process.”James Clear, New Habit
Incredibly motivated by this fact, I am always trying to better my habits and thoughts. By thinking clean, your home will be clean. As they say, you are what you think.
I am going to be your Barry’s Bootcamp Cleaning instructor. If you leave a mess, you’ll feel me in the back of your head screaming to clean that right now.
They make their bed.
When you open your eyes and get out of bed, please do it. Get it over with and quickly make your bed. There’s a lot of studies that focus on the habit of making your bed. Leaving a messy bed will mess with your head for the rest of the day, even if you’re not consciously thinking about it. You’ll be setting up your day for success & will carry on your productivity throughout the rest of the day.
They wipe all the time.
Wipe as you go. If there’s a spot on the counter that’s dirty, wipe it. When you use the restroom, wipe down the toilet and counters. I wipe down my bathroom every morning after my morning skin routine, so I never have to worry about it getting gross. Wipe down the kitchen every time you use it. Wipe down your desk after a long day of work. Keep towels handy, so you don’t have to waste paper towels. I have about 14 cleaning towels, usually using two per day and washing the dirty ones on laundry day. I love wiping down all my surfaces and smelling/seeing all the clean; maybe you’ll learn to love it too.
They have a no-shoes rule.
How do you keep your floors clean? No shoes in the house rule. Super simple. You would be so surprised at how much dirt we bring into the house and how fast our floors get dirty because of it. Keeping some slippers by the door for you and extra’s for guests will save you from having to stare at your dirty floor and regularly mop.
They clean as they cook.
I know this one’s tough. It’s exhausting enough to cook, and then you also have to clean! By cleaning as you cook, you’re saving time and energy by getting it over piece by piece at the moment.
They wash their dishes daily.
If you live with a roommate or partner, try taking turns and sharing the load. At the end of every night, have all the dishes in the dishwasher and run it overnight. The next day, all your dishes will be clean and always ready for use.
They do laundry often.
If you have access to a laundry machine, preferably your own or free, try to do laundry often. Instead of saving a nice giant pile for Sunday, go by slowly doing what you have to do, like folding, ironing, and washing when you need to. Nothing is scarier/intimidating than staring at a giant load of laundry on a Sunday morning.
They vacuum every day.
Vacuum as the sun rises and sets, aka morning and night. Vacuuming immediately makes your home feel a million times cleaner. Try sweeping any dirty spots as you find them because dust accumulates and dirt loves company. Hand-held vacuums are great for small areas that don’t require lugging out the big guy.
They wipe down their bath/shower every day.
Water stains are tough to fight after weeks or months of buildup. Keep a mini squeegee in your shower and wipe it down after use. Your shower will stay spotless and crystal clear, and you don’t have to stress about deep scrubbing once a week.
They get fresh air.
Open the windows every once in a while, especially if you live in an apartment. It can start to feel stuffy and stale air can build up if there’s no circulation. Even if it’s cold out, a few minutes a day will help bring in new, fresh, clean air to breathe in.
They clean the forgotten spots.
Many spots tend to go unnoticed for a while, even if you clean every day. Here’s a reminder to clean: the windows, above & inside appliances, corners, ledges, side tables, open surfaces, remote controls, cabinets, and any furniture that is rarely used.
They multi-task while they clean.
- Jam to some good tunes & practice your singing.
- Listen to that audiobook you’ve been dying to read.
- Call your family and friends to catch up.
- Have a friendly conversation with your roommate or partner.
They keep appliances to a minimum.
You don’t have to store all the appliances, just the ones you rarely use. Air fryers, slow cookers, blenders, etc., are pretty big and can take up much potential open space.
They keep their fridge and pantry organized.
So when one of your guests open up for a snack, they are more than impressed.
They don’t stack the mail.
When you throw stuff like mail on the counter along with other important things, that is when stuff starts to get lost magically or accidentally thrown away. Check your mail regularly and throw away the papers you don’t need.
They don’t have junk drawers.
This is a big one. Does anyone remember that episode in Friends when Monica, the biggest OCD freak, secretly kept all her junk in a closet? Don’t try and relate to that. Keep everything in its place rather than storing it in a drawer that has to be forced open.
They keep air purifying plants.
Every homeowner should keep air-purifying plants around. They help keep the air clean by improving the air quality by removing harmful toxins and softening any space.
If they have a pet, they clean them often.
We all know that pets aren’t the most hygienic after a long day of play outside. One way to keep your home and furniture clean is by keeping your pets clean. Wipe them down after being out and before bed to not get any dirt or stains on the carpets or sofas.
They clean their walls.
Have you ever heard of Mr. Clean Magic Eraser? He’s my best friend. Do a spot inspection of your walls every so often, and clean any dirty spots with Mr. Clean. He’s the best at getting fingerprints, makeup stains, oils, and any other germs we carry on our hands off the walls.
They clean the mirrors.
Have you ever seen a selfie with a dirty mirror? It’s a little distracting. Wipe down your mirrors every day to ensure sparkly selfies and a spotless view.
They empty the trash daily.
No one likes an overflowing trash can. Emptying the trash daily is an easy habit of starting, which is better than shoving down gross food down the can for more room.
They put away their stuff immediately.
As soon as you step through the front door, go straight to your closet, hang up your coat and scarf, and put away any other items you used throughout the day.
They allow themselves a slip-up.
Don’t be too hard on yourself if you forget to clean or missed a habit you’re trying to form. The best thing to do is forget about it & not allow it next time. We are human, and we make mistakes. But don’t let mistakes bring you down, and keep going!
This all may seem like a lot overwhelming. Still, by slowly incorporating these healthy cleaning habits, your quality of life will improve, and productivity will come much easier to you. And let’s not forget, you’ll surely impress your guests.