Today I want to share a tip from my friend, Dmitri Bilgere, which has helped me to maximize my efforts when cleaning.
I don’t know about you, but I hate cleaning. I like having a clean house, but I don’t like the process of sweeping, windexing, vacuuming, dusting, etc. So what generally happens is that I keep putting off cleaning, and end up living in a moderately dirty apartment.
Part of the problem is that cleaning my apartment always seems like such a huge undertaking. I don’t often have an extra 2 hours in my day, so it seems like I never have the time needed to do a thorough cleaning job.
Here’s a tip my friend Dmitri shared with me that has helped me to think about cleaning differently:
He recommends that when you begin to clean, look around and identify the task that would make the biggest improvement in the overall look of your living space. For me today, the #1 thing was clean up and organize my mail and papers. (I have a bad habit of letting papers pile up on my countertops.) It only took me 10 minutes to complete this first task, and my kitchen was already looking quite a bit better.
After task #1 is complete, check in with yourself. Do you have the time and energy to complete another cleaning task? If not, that’s okay. Move on with the rest of your day, and feel good about the progress you made. On the other hand, if you do have more time and energy, repeat Step 1. Look around, and identify the task that would make the biggest improvement in the overall look of your living space. For me today, the #2 thing was to empty and take out the garbage in the house. (You know that feeling when you try to smash down the trash in your garbage can, but you can’t because you have already done it a couple times before? That was my situation.) Again, it only took me about 10 minutes to complete this second task, and I noticed an improvement in the overall cleanliness of my apartment.
After task #2 is complete, check in with yourself again. Repeat this process until you feel done cleaning for the day. By focusing on the high impact cleaning tasks, you will maximize your cleaning efforts. Also, because you get immediate positive feedback on your work, sometimes I notice that I get on a roll, and my energy for cleaning actually increases as I go.
Discussion: How do you plan your cleaning efforts? What do you think about Dmitri’s plan to maximize your cleaning process?