Having a cleaning schedule has saved me countless hours. At a quick glance, I can see what needs to be done that day and then add it into my daily task list. And breaking down the chores into small tasks each days spreads out the work and makes it more manageable.
A good cleaning schedule can be the difference between a chaotic household and an organized home. Cleaning house can be challenging when you have a full calendar and task list. Having everyone home more makes this challenge even harder. Doing small jobs every day will help keep it from being a big, energy-zapping chore, and having a clear schedule makes it easy for others to help. Here’s my system.
Creating a List of Tasks for Cleaning House
The first step is to sit down and list everything you did when you cleaned the house. This is more difficult than it sounds. You need to break everything you do into smaller pieces, preferably 15-20 minutes each.
Once you have a complete list, write how often the item is done next to each item. Does this item need to be done weekly, bi-weekly, monthly, or quarterly (I don’t include daily tasks like doing the dishes or wiping down the counters in this list)? Now, rewrite the list by time frame.
Scheduling the Tasks
The next step was to actually schedule items on various days. I started with the weekly tasks and tried to spread them across the week as evenly as possible. The more I looked at things, the more I realized that some tasks that I had considered weekly before (like cleaning out the refrigerator) could become bi-weekly. Spread the bi-weekly tasks on this same weekly calendar.
Next comes the monthly tasks. I suggest creating a 4-week monthly plan and spreading the tasks as evenly as possible. Also, try to group similar tasks together to make it easier to remember what needs to be done, and so you only get out one set of tools.
The final step is the quarterly plan. In the monthly and quarterly plans there are several things that I originally would have done on a monthly or quarterly basis but would have done the whole house at that time, such as washing the windows. To try to make it possible for me to do these chores, I rotated what room I did the chore in so that I got to each room on the original schedule, but I was actually doing it in broken-down pieces across the entire time period.
The next step was getting family members to help as much as possible. My husband has always been great at helping with the housework. My kids, not so much. They said it was because they never knew what to do when they had some time. So, I created a command center for our home using an Erin Condren Planner.
During my weekly planning session, I put the family calendar in the planner so that we can easily check everyone’s schedule. I add the menu near the bottom of each day.
I also enter the household cleaning and maintenance tasks for the week in the daily to do list area. With my health issues this is very important. This is what allows the other members of the family to help out with the chores.
Finally, in the left-hand list column, we keep a listing of household projects that we want to do soon.
By breaking household chores down into bite-sized chunks and creating a command center calendar so that family members know what they can do to help, it’s much easier to keep up with housework. And, better yet, this system can be easily adjusted to accommodate an increase or decrease in the number of people in the house on a regular basis. This system has been a wonderful addition to our family.
Let me know how you simplify your household chores in the comments below or send me an email at firstname.lastname@example.org.
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