Picking up after ourselves!
I want all of us to do this, and to get our families on board too! It is so simple an idea, yet people tend to leave things out of their place, and next thing you know our homes are a mess! If you started your spring cleaning and have been decluttering your home, than this is the next step! You want your home to stay clean! We didn't do all that work for nothing right??
Here is the challenge:
For seven consecutive days, be vigilant with yourself and your family on putting things away when they are done using them. Here is a simple list of examples that you can go by.
- Laundry…when it is folded, immediately put it away. Either do it yourself, or have each family member put their own away. In the drawers, hung up, not on the bed, dresser, or floor!
- Dirty clothes…put in hamper as soon as they are taken off. Now I know that some of us with teenagers, they tend to try on six outfits for school and leave the rest on the floor. Make sure they hang them back up before they leave the room. Otherwise, they will throw clean clothes into the hamper and make more laundry for us.
- Dishes…when the dishwasher is full, run it, when it stops unload it. Do not leave dirty dishes in the sink; they go into the dishwasher immediately.
- Mail…Do not just throw it on the counter or table when it comes into the house. Go through it. Throw out the junk and file the rest where it belongs. Use the "touch it once" rule!
- School papers… I know I receive a ton of handouts from school. Then there are the papers the children bring home to show us, and the artwork. It never ends. Sort through it, keep what you want and toss the rest.
- Shoes, jackets, book bags, and hats…into the closet they go! Do not let your children come home from school and just toss the stuff where they want. Designate a place for them to put it and follow through on enforcing that they put it away immediately upon arriving home.
- Toys…keep the toys to a minimum and in one area. Be sure your child knows that whatever they take out they are going to have to pick up at the end of the day. And follow through. Children of all ages can either help to put away toys or do it themselves, there should be no reason you are picking them up alone! Teach your children young to pick up after themselves to save your sanity later on!
The most important part of this challenge is to have a place for everything. People will know where to put something if you ask them to put it away. You’ll sound like a broken record for a couple of days, saying “please put this away”, “don’t leave that there”, “pick that up”…but sooner or later they and you will just do it automatically. You will have to check up on kids with their rooms, and with their stuff. You will have to go into the rooms and check. Are there clothes on the floor? Call them in and make them put them away. Once your family knows what you expect, you will be surprised at how they will clean up after themselves.
State the rules.
- Leave the room the way you find it.
- When you are done using something put it away where it belongs.
- Remember the biggest rule of all… A place for everything and everything in its place.
- Follow that simple rule and your home will always be picked up, and will be so much easier to clean.