“I hate cleaning; so it’s impossible for me to be organised”. A common statement, but a major misconception. Of course, it is possible for you to be organised if you want to be. Everyone can be.
Being organised and cleaning although linked are very different things.
According to the Merriam Webster dictionary, to organise, is to arrange or order things so that they can be found or used easily and quickly. There is nothing about mopping the floors in that definition – but one of my favourite side effects of being an organised individual is that your home or surroundings are also organised, and notably tidier too.
Those who know me very well, know how much I hate cleaning and will do anything within my power to avoid it. This may come a surprise to many of you, as I am personally very organised, I support people to declutter their homes and coach others ways in which to become more organised, yet, there it is, I hate cleaning, especially mopping my floors, as much as the next person.
For years, I looked at the homes of others who where always tidy and thought this would be impossible to maintain. Surely, these people never sleep, don’t have any hobbies or any fun at all… but yes, they do sleep, they have hobbies, they have fun, but they are also organised (and there are the odd few that just love to clean).
So, how is it possible to be organised if you hate to clean? For me, I FOCUS ON DOING THINGS AROUND MY HOME THAT SAVE TIME.
Here are my top 6 tips for people who hate cleaning, but would like to be organised:
1. Creating dedicated homes for all your belongings
I don’t have the time to search for my keys, shoes, phone, wallet and everything else that I need to get out of the house each morning, so I have created a dedicated home for each of these items, as well as all the other items are that are stored within my home. That way I always know where everything is when I need it.
2. Reduce the amount of new items that I bring into my home
I don’t buy anything unless I have a genuine need for it or will use it within the next week or so. For me having things hanging around that “may come in handy one day” make my life difficult today. No thank you! This is great for my hip pocket too.
3. See everything that is stored within a space at a single glance
I have ensured that when I open my pantry, my wardrobe or any other cupboard door in my home, I can see everything that is in there and can quickly grab what I need. Plus, it makes putting things away easier too, as there is a little hole in my pantry where my tomato sauce should be. It means that I’m not looking aimlessly into the cupboard to find the single item that is hidden somewhere in there, not having to carefully open the door to avoid an avalanche of things falling down on me or fight with the cupboard door to close it.
4. Make things as quick and easy to put away as possible, ideally with one hand
For me that means not stacking items on top of each other or behind other items on a shelf or in a cupboard. I like to store things vertically or use baskets for like items. If I need to move something else to put something away, it is too difficult and I know myself, like the many other people who dislike cleaning, if it’s too hard to do right now, it gets put in the ‘I’ll do it later’ basket. The problem is that later rarely comes.
5. Finishing the cycle and putting things away when you have finished
This one is a biggie, probably one of the most important and takes a lot of willpower and dedication to do consistently. It is hard, particularly if it doesn’t come naturally. Through practice, I have found it takes me less than 30 seconds on average to a put away single item away when I am done. This is a HUGE TIME SAVER LATER, particularly when trying to rush out the door in the morning. If everything is in it’s place, my mornings are a breeze, and not spent searching for Miss 3’s hairbrush, Miss 5’s missing school shoe, Miss 8’s homework or my phone and keys.
6. Only have items within my home that I have current and genuine need for, or that I deeply love
By only having items within my home that suits my family’s current lifestyle immediately makes my house appear cleaner. Clutter immediately disappears. I’m not saying go minimalist here, but my cupboards are not overflowing with items that I no longer use or ‘may need one day’. For me less stuff, directly means less cleaning. Less toys to pick up of the floor, less dishes to wash, less clothes to launder and just less things to put away. Win, win!
My house is far from perfect, but when is time to get out the mop and cloth to clean my house (yes, I do clean begrudgingly), my home is already organised, so it is so much quicker and easier to clean and no where near as painful or depressing. My house is cleaner than it has ever been, despite spending less time cleaning than I did before I decided to organise my home (and started using Norwex – but that’s a story for another day).
Some people are born organised, but for many becoming organised is challenging and may take a lot of will power and dedication. It is not easy, but it is worth every effort. You can do it.
If you need a little support to declutter your home or assistance to organise your space, please feel free to contact me. I’m happy to help.
Professional Organiser, Amy Kennedy from The Organising Bee supports Canberra families to organise their home and life.
We minimise clutter in the family home and puts in place organising systems to make daily tasks quicker and easier, so that you have time to enjoy life and have time to create those special memorable family moments. If you would like support, please contact Amy Kennedy.