I like lists of five. Five things are easy to come up with on just about any topic. Like, what are the five best movies you’ve ever seen? Your five favorite pieces of clothing? Five books you’d need with you on a desert island? Today, we’re going to consider what the Top Five things that need to be maintained in your home for you to consider it “picked up”.
(For the record? 1. Godfather 2, Inception, Memento, Gone With The Wind, the Usual Suspects; 2. Denim skirt, ratty Washington State sweatshirt from 1993, fabulous Calvin Klein red/black/camel dress from this year’s Nordstrom Anniversary sale, the components of my standard uniform, my mom’s cashmere swing coat with the fur collar; 3. Harry Potter #7, Pride & Prejudice, The Buccaneers, Neverwhere, …And Ladies Of The Club.)
In all reality, I doubt if any sane person is able to absolutely commit to an ironclad housework schedule. Calendars aren’t a universal solution. Nothing, in fact, is a universal solution. So if you’ve tried any of the million organizing systems in the world and none has worked, you may feel like it’s your fault. It’s not. Well, not entirely. Maybe you just need to re-examine your approach.
You’ve heard of the phrase “can’t see the forest for the trees”? This means that you’re so fixated on the details, the minutiae, the micro-ness of the situation that you lose sight of the bigger picture. It goes both ways, you know. It’s also very possible to see only the forest, only the whole, none of the parts. Neither is ideal, and changing your perspective is what resolves this trees/forest situation. So maybe you’re looking at your situation from way too far away when you rely on a calendar.
Instead of “what do I need to clean today?”, how about looking at it as “what’s my path of least resistance?” It can be an entire room (like, “clean bathrooms”) or an area (“kitchen counter”) or a task (“laundry”). At our house, laundry and dirty dishes clog up the entire place when they’re left undone. What about you? What are the five quick jobs that, if dealt with regularly, make the rest of your home seem easier to manage?