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Conscious housecleaning begins with a quiet clear mind. Get organized with a checklist. Tune in to your intuition. Now go ahead and clean to your heart’s content.
Whether you are cleaning your own home or the home of a customer, the following household cleaning tips will help you get into the right mindset and organize your chores for an efficient, effective and enjoyable clean.
The following tips are based on the lessons I learned from making many mistakes during my housecleaning career. Hopefully they will make your experience easier.
If you are cleaning for others, housecleaning Part V recommends tips for handling your first interview. This is the best time to establish your customer’s priorities from which to prepare your checklist.
If you are cleaning your own home, prepare a checklist that prioritizes your chores and breaks them down into reasonable sized chunks. What is reasonable? Whatever you can do well within a specified time frame, and not overtax or stress yourself out.
invariably found to have evolved
from a simple system that works. Murphy’s Law
Remember to keep your plan basic and simple so you enjoy every moment of cleaning your house.
How to reduce stress, avoid breakage and enjoy housecleaning…
- Prepare an organized checklist that keeps you on track.
- Maintain your conscious awareness in each moment.
- Stay alert, tune into your intuition and follow its guidance, even if it occasionally takes you away from your checklist.
- Let go of your need to be right, and your need to control.
- Detach yourself from the outcome.
- Take nothing seriously.
Reduce backtracking – save time and energy.
Keep your housecleaning checklist in a small notebook, or on a small clipboard, that easily fits into a pocket of your apron.
Important Tip: Your intuition may guide you away from the next task on your checklist. Be sure to get back on track so you don’t leave any task undone.
If the house is large with multiple floors, break down your chores into chunks to be rotated on different cleaning days. Even if you are cleaning for a whole day in one house, there will be chores that require your attention only once or twice a month.
Be prepared for the unexpected…
I prefer customers to be absent while I’m cleaning. But that isn’t always the case.
Out of respect for my customer’s privacy, I begin cleaning in a room they are not occupying, even if it is not the starting point on my checklist. Just adapt your plan accordingly.
If your customer initiates it, sometimes a few minutes in conversation with a customer goes a long way. A great way to build trust is to give 100% of your attention your customer. Be real, and don’t overdo it.
Customers appreciate your eagerness to get on with your work, so it won’t be awkward to politely excuse yourself.
A logical order for efficient housecleaning…
Laundry and beds
If laundry and making beds are on your list of chores, begin them first because they are ongoing while you are cleaning.
Gather up all the bedding and towels and start the washing first thing.
Pull out fresh bedding and make up all the beds.
Be alert for the end of each wash and dry cycle so you can put more loads in as you notice.
Fold the laundry right out of the dryer.
If ironing is on your list, do it after you have cleaned the entire house, but before you wash and wax floors.
Tidy up for easier housecleaning
Empty all trash containers.
Tidy only designated work areas, making sure that all floors, table tops and counters are clear and ready for cleaning.
If your list, that has been approved by your customer, does not include tidying more than just where you are cleaning, you are wasting your time and energy doing what is unnecessary. Don’t do that.
Being consciously aware makes life so much easier than running unconsciously on auto pilot. Be alert, pay attention and consider your customer’s needs and desires.
Over-deliver yes, but do it to please, not to annoy, your customer.
Clear the table and counters, stack dishes in the dishwasher. If the dishwasher and the washing machine can run at the same time, start the dishwasher.
If cleaning inside the refrigerator is on the list do that before cleaning counters. Remember to clean all containers before returning them to your clean refrigerator.
Next, clean all surfaces in the kitchen, except the floor. Don’t forget range hood and top of fridge (make sure they are on your list).
Empty kitchen garbage container and take all the household garbage outside to the trash can. Or if this is not convenient and efficient, at least put it all near the door where you exit the house.
Dry dust before you vacuum because some dust and other particles land on the carpet and floors.
If you have a Blue Wonder micro mop with the telescopic pole, you could use this for ceilings and high corners cobweb dusting.
Complete all of the vacuuming. With a canister style vacuum cleaner you can clean ledges, ceiling vents and door frames, and even venetian blinds.
Move small pieces of furniture to ensure a good clean. Once a month move large pieces if you can manage them. Don’t be afraid to ask for help or recommend a service for special projects.
Vacuum up the little hair gremlins that hang out on ledges around bathtubs, sinks, decorative crevices on the outside of toilet bowls. If the shower stall and the bathtub are dry, suck up the hair gremlins that hang out there. Or spray them away with the shower head.
Clean everything in the bathrooms but the mirrors and washing the floor. Avoid retracing your steps to wipe up the spray from cleaning sinks that are close to the mirrors.
Mirrors, windows and other glass
Clean all the mirrors in one trip around the house. You could also clean the glass on hanging pictures while move quickly through the house.
Note: If there is still residue from commercial housecleaning products remaining on mirrors and windows, rinse your cloth and change the water frequently to avoid spots drying on surfaces.
Next wash all the inside windows that need your attention. Give special attention to windows near sinks and inside doors with inset beveled glass.
Spot clean inside windows, walls, doors, baseboards, etc.
Now,check the entire house for finger prints and smudges on walls and doors, and door frames. Lower your eyes to catch the odd shoe smudge on doors and baseboards.
Once the entire house is clean and sparkling, those little smudges become magnified in the eyes of your customer, or your family and friends.
Before you begin washing floors, take a quick, eyes-wide-open search throughout the house for areas that may have been forgotten – they will jump out at you if you are consciously aware in the present moment.
Watch for cleaning tools, energy bar wrappers, you may have left behind. Double check your list of chores and your customer’s priorities. Attend to the oversights.
The finish line is fast approaching…
Move all of your housecleaning tools and equipment to the exit door.
At this point, you may notice a strong tendency think about where you are going next. Resist the urge. Stay present.
Keep bringing your conscious awareness into the present moment and give your task at hand 100% of your attention. You will then enjoy the wonderful results of your fine efforts.
Floors – wash/wax
Begin washing floors farthest away from the exit door and back your way out to the exit.
If there is a special treatment of floor wax necessary and if it makes sense to do it before washing floors, then do that. But it may be that the bathroom floors will need to be washed before you attend to the waxed floor. Do whatever works most efficiently for you.
Don’t forget to set the security system alarm as you are leaving.
There you have it – the art of conscious housecleaning.
I hope these simple, basic household cleaning tips are of value to you and make your life easier. Happy cleaning!
I would love to hear about your experience with these ideas. If you have other basic and simple recommendations that support our environmentally friendly cleaning style, please keep in touch at Contact Sary.