Overwhelmed by House Cleaning and Organizing??
Crystal Miller

One year, right before the holidays, I set out to do some major house cleaning. I had family coming and I wanted to get my home in shape. I looked at all that needed to be done and suddenly felt very overwhelmed. It was not like things were a disaster but they were not where I wanted them either. I thought to myself, “How did I let it get this far out of balance”?

In order to overcome the overwhelming feelings I was having I decided the better way to handle the job was to break it down into ‘bite size’ pieces. I made a list of all the rooms that needed to be cleaned. I had family that would be staying in bedrooms and they needed to be prepped. I had a house to decorate and even the nicest Christmas decorating would be lost and unappreciated if surrounded by dust and clutter. And I had food to prepare for what would be up to 15 people at times in my home.

With that in mind I started with my kids’ bedrooms. I enlisted their help to not only deal with their own rooms, but to help the younger ones too. If I am overwhelmed by the mess, then sending my young child into the room without any help or direction is more than overwhelming to them; it can seem impossible. I gave those that needed it direction and assistance. After the clutter was dealt with we deep cleaned. I moved furniture, vacuumed, washed and rearranged some of the rooms and even painted one room.

With the bedrooms under control I moved onto the rest of the house. I took this job one step at a time. By the time I had moved through most of the house all I had left was my bedroom. As I had been cleaning the house if I came to something that I did not know what to do with it I would put it in my room. If my kids came to me and said, “Mom, what do I do with this?” I would tell them to put it in my room. Well when I finally got to my room to deal with it I had a room that was a major issue to tackle.

But I started the job by focusing on one area at a time only. I brought into the room a few boxes and some bags. I had boxes for books. I like to read and I had several stacks of books. I decided that I would put all the books I came across into the box and then back on the book shelves and pull them out at a later date to read. I had a box for items that I may come across that I just did not know what to do with. I could toss these items in the box and deal with them after the room was in order. I had a bag for garbage and a bag for give away items. I had some cleaning rags, spray cleaner, my vacuum, and I was ready! I began at one point in my room and worked my way around the room. The goal was to get that area completely cleared and whatever furniture was in that spot moved so I could vacuum. It took me a day and half to clean it all, move things, wash bedding and curtains and set it all back up. It seemed having a plan for dealing with the clutter in the room helped the job go much more quickly.

Clutter in any room is always our number one enemy when it comes to cleaning, keeping things clean and keeping us from feeling overwhelmed by the process. When the clutter is dealt with the rest of the job is usually fairly easy to do. The best habit you can establish in this area is to keep the clutter under control in your home. Make a daily routine of clearing off flat surfaces, throwing away unneeded items, and a habit of picking up after yourself. Teach your children to pick up after themselves too. Have them learn to clean up their toys, put away food after they make themselves something to eat, put their shoes and coats away where they belong. It can take time to give kids a consciousness about keeping themselves and their surroundings neat and orderly, but it is worth the effort!

When you tackle an overwhelming house cleaning job remember to make small goals to accomplish as you work. If the job is very overwhelming to you then choose to clean at one time only one half of the room or even small spots in the room if it is a very big job, and focus on just that. Also sometimes as you are working at an overwhelming job it helps to walk away from it every now and then. Take a break, have some tea, or play with your babies and then go back. When you enter a room that is in need of lots of attention be armed with boxes and bags and cleaning supplies so that you are ready to take on the challenge in a more efficient manner.

Remember that a home is always going be enjoyed more if it is clean and orderly. The process to get a home clean and orderly and maintain it is often not enjoyed by all but the end result is a blessing to your family. One of the things that I always do when I clean is to finish a room by adding something of beauty to the room. It does not always have to be something new. When I finish cleaning my dining room for instance, I will put a new or different table cloth on or change the table center piece. In the living room I may put down something simple like some new coasters, some flowers (real or artificial), or try a different picture on the wall. These can be just little things that give added pleasure to you and help give added incentive to keep the room clean.

The bottom line is yes; organizing and cleaning your home can sometimes be overwhelming. But take it one step at a time and give yourself ‘bite size’ projects to work on, take breaks when needed, be prepared for the clutter and items you will need to deal with. You and your family will be blessed by your efforts!



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