The quick-clean method. Dividing your home into sections and using your timer!
Today got away from me, I woke up late, got 2 kids dressed, fed and packed lunch bags & back packs in 50 minutes. Once the kids were loaded onto the bus I sat down to take a breath at the computer and got an email reminding me that it was my day to read to and bring snack to my preschoolers room. Ugh! That meant making cookies and trashing the kitchen even more.
After being at a conference all weekend I’ve got piles of laundry that need to be folded and dishes to do. My kitchen cupboards were bare, so after putting my preschooler on the bus I hit the grocery store. I stopped home to unload the groceries (more mess) and headed out to school to read to the preschoolers. By 3:00 in the afternoon our home looked like it had been burglarized! Wednesdays are my night off so I didn’t want to welcome Tom home with a “hi/bye honey, welcome to the dump!” and run out the door.
There I was with 40 minutes and 5 rooms to straighten up before getting the kids off the bus. So I divided my time by the number of rooms and set out to do 8 minutes of cleaning in each of the rooms. You’d be surprised by all I got accomplished in that amount of time, I know I was! When you’re in a hurry to clean your home, whether it’s for company, you’re getting ready to go on vacation, doing your night time routine, or you’ve found yourself way behind and just need to inspire yourself to start cleaning, you can bless your home in a very short amount of time.
The idea of breaking up the house into zones and using a timer isn’t a new one. I’ve been following the “Fly Lady” for years. You can visit flylady.com for lots of great ideas to get your home to work better for you and your family.
If you’re going to give this a go I suggest you:
- Get out a cleaning caddy full of your favorite cleaners and have your vacuum out and ready to go and possibly a steam cleaner if you have one. That way everything’s ready to grab.
- Play some of your favorite music or some sort of inspirational or teaching CD so that you can be inspired while you do your job.
- Next, put a water bottle by your timer so you can grab a drink each time you reset your timer. You’ll be moving at a quick pace, might as well refresh yourself and get your daily recommended water intake at the same time!
- Finally, figure out how much time you have to work with and how many spaces you need to clean then divide the amount of time by the number of rooms and off you go!
When you’re cleaning:
- You are NOT going for perfection. Just do what you see needs to be done and do it quickly. This is not a time to “spring clean” and get to the nitty gritty. This is time to make a visual impact that will inspire you!
- When your timer goes off finish the last thing you’re working on then quit!
- Don’t get side tracked and end up in another room. Stay in the same room until your timer goes off.
- Don’t work in one room for more than 15 minutes. If you work for 15 minutes in each room and you still have time and energy then repeat the cycle again. You don’t want to spend so much time in one room that you tire out and don’t get to the other rooms.
Here’s what I was able to accomplish in each room with 8 minutes on the timer:
- Table cleared and wiped down.
- Floor swept
- Floor steam cleaned.
- Dishes loaded into the dishwasher and washer started.
- Toys and clutter cleared
- Mantle, side table & coffee table dusted
- Floor Vacuumed
- Load of laundry folded
- Floor vacuumed
- Clutter cleared
- Floor vacuumed
40 minutes made a huge difference for me today! I got all that done on my own, imagine what a family working together one day a week could accomplish in an hour! Because I was in this quick pace mode and inspired by what I had accomplished I was energized to help my kids with their home work and get the back packs and snacks ready for tomorrow so tomorrow morning won’t be a repeat of this morning!
How about you? How do you get your house cleaned when you’re in a hurry?