I love checklists. Creating them is fun. Checking things off is rewarding. Once something is on a checklist, you can’t forget it, which helps keep you from going crazy in the head with too much going on up there.
This particular checklist is a personal achievement. While I do like checklists, I don’t particularly enjoy cleaning. I have used this checklist myself and given it to others to help me tweak and perfect it―”perfect” here meaning not too intense as to stress you out, but not so simplistic as to allow your house to collapse into a complete state of chaos.
My inspiration for the checklist is as follows:
1. Cleaning little by little, and frequently, is less work than letting it all pile up on you.
2. Anybody in the house should be able to pitch in and help, and it should be easy for them to know what needs to be done.
3. People like me have a hard time functioning properly when the house is messy and dirty.
4. But nobody likes cleaning all the time.
5. And even if you did, a house will never, never, never be perfectly clean for longer than 10 minutes. It’s just not possible.
6. We need to make peace with that fact.
7. But that doesn’t mean we stop trying!
8. There is a happy medium.
There are tons of checklists available already. I know, because I’ve researched them and tried many myself. I’ve tried putting my chores on auto-pilot (and then proceeded to never look at my chore calendar). I’ve checked to see what Martha has to say about it (The woman is thorough…but delusional. I will not be fluffing my pillows daily, let alone vacuuming…Every. Single. Day. Let’s be serious.) Other checklists lost me when the list of things I need to do every day can’t fit on one hand. Not cool.
After much brainstorming and careful thought, I created this little housekeeping masterpiece. One month’s checklist fits on a page. There are a three every-day tasks focused on the kitchen, an area which seems to snowball into chaos unlike anywhere else. Next are the three-times-a-week items, which keep the main areas of the house generally picked up and presentable. Weekly tasks which can be done whenever you have a moment to spare, and a short list of bigger monthly tasks cover preventive cleaning and more time-intensive chores.
You better check yourself before you wreck yourself. Or your house.
Happy cleaning! Let me know if you have feedback on the checklist in the comments.
Cleaning Checklist (PDF)