Simple Cleaning Routine Tips for Any Schedule

A popular question I get is HOW to fit the Clean Mama Cleaning Routine into different schedules. Here’s the thing – I created my cleaning routine years ago out of necessity. I was sick of cleaning all weekend long and living with the crazy all week long. Once I started using a simple routine I realized that just a little bit every day was helping me keep things clean most of the time. Then came three kids, different work schedules, traveling for my job, running a business…..

My cleaning routine?  It was the constant in the chaos.  I’ve tweaked it over the years and i can assure you that it will work with most schedules.  How do I know?  Because I’ve worked the routine in just about every scenario and it works!  Mondays are bathrooms day, Tuesdays are dusting day….this simple routine helps me too!  If you haven’t tried my cleaning routine or heard about it, go to my START HERE page then come on back.

This post is all about some simple tips and tricks for how to incorporate a cleaning routine into your busy schedule. Let’s not dispute whose schedule is more difficult to fit a cleaning routine into, but let’s talk about HOW to incorporate a cleaning routine because figuring out WHEN to clean can freeze up the progress and stop you in your tracks. You can always find the current month’s FREE cleaning calendar at the top of my free printables page and lots of other free cleaning routine printables.

A little bit about Clean Mama’s Cleaning Routine:

I love a clean house, but when people live in a home, cleaning up is constant.  That’s where a cleaning routine is essential – simple tasks completed daily and weekly really keep the cleaning to a minimum so I can spend time with my family and not cleaning.  With minutes a day and a plan, homekeeping can be enjoyable, simple, and easy to fit into your busy life and schedule.  In case you’re curious, I have been implementing this cleaning routine for nearly 15 years – as a newly married, full-time working gal, a full-time working out of the house mom, a stay-at-home mom, a traveling working in and out of the home mom, and now a work-at-home mom with three active kiddos.  This routine is for anyone that’s busy and doesn’t want to spend a lot of time cleaning.  It may need to be tweaked for your life and schedule, but if you want to spend a couple minutes every day with a little homekeeping.

This free printable explains my cleaning routine in detail – you can find it on my free printable page and here on this post.

Here are some Simple Suggestions for Implementing Clean Mama’s Cleaning Routine:

WORKING OUTSIDE THE HOME
If you work outside the home and get home late or leave early (or both!) and are exhausted and have no energy to put a cleaning routine into place, my best suggestion is to start with 5-10 minutes before you leave for work and 5-10 minutes when you get home.  Start with the daily tasks and work on completing them every day.  If the daily tasks are overwhelming, just start with one – one load of laundry from start to put away, pick up clutter, check floors, or wipe counters.  Add one every week and before you know it you’ll have built a little routine into your schedule.  Once you feel like you’ve got a good handle on daily tasks, start adding the weekly cleaning tasks – Monday is bathrooms day, Tuesday is Dusting Day, etc.  Set a timer for 5-10 minutes and do what you can in that amount of time and forget the rest.  Keep going and before long you’ll have added this step to your routine as well.  If you feel like you can add more time, and get more accomplished, increase your time to 15-20 minutes.

IRREGULAR WORK HOURS/SCHEDULE
An irregular schedule is difficult for so many reasons.  Some irregular schedules are overnight shifts, 3 days on and 3 days off or it might even be that you work 12 hour shifts. My best advice?  A cleaning routine can be accomplished, but give yourself grace while you’re trying to figure out what works best for you.  You might need to double up tasks and tackle two or three on your days off so you don’t have to do much on the days that you are at work.  For instance, if you work on Thursdays but have Wednesday off,  do Wednesday’s task (vacuum) and Thursday’s task (wash floors) on the same day. Some weeks might be weeks where all you do are the basic daily cleaning tasks (make beds, one load of laundry, wipe counters, clutter, and check floors).  Some weeks you’ll be able to conquer the world and get everything done.  Take it all in stride and remember that something is always better than nothing.

WORKING AT HOME
Studies show that taking breaks throughout the day can actually help you be more productive.  Choose specific times to take homekeeping breaks and throw a load of laundry into the washing machine or unload the dishwasher.  These little breaks will get your body moving and might just help you be more productive during the day.  I find it most helpful to get my homekeeping tasks out of the way early in the day so they don’t get pushed to the back burner and not completed.  Find YOUR time to clean – do you get more accomplished with little chunks of time throughout the day or do you do better by getting it all completed before you start working.  Figure out what works best for you!

STAY AT HOME
If you are at home all day with kids or if they are at school, you know that the house is most likely in a constant state of flux and mess or potential mess.  ENJOY it, but if you need to have it tidied up during the day (I do!), my best suggestion is to implement times during the day when the kids tidy up their messes and you do your daily/weekly tasks.  Complete tasks during nap time or when kids are playing independently.  Building time to clean up into your schedule is the best way to find the time to clean.  If you don’t plan cleaning, you’ll get to the end of the day and realize you didn’t get anything done and feel defeated.  I find that seasonal cleaning is really helpful to get that everything’s cleaned all at once feeling.

GETTING KIDS INVOLVED
If you have children, get them involved in homekeeping.  It will make it easier for you to incorporate cleaning and they’ll help make the work a little lighter for you.  A couple things that work well at our house – take one activity out at a time, clean up before lunch/naps, clean up before dinner, quick clean up before bedtime.   Assign specific, age-appropriate tasks – laundry, dusting, making beds, cleaning up after themselves are all simple daily tasks that kids of all ages can complete with a little guidance.

LIMITED MOBILITY/ILLNESS
There are times in your life when your cleaning routine is the last thing you’re concerned about.  I’ve experienced a handful of instances where I couldn’t pull it together to keep up with my routine or I was told by a doctor not to lift or do any exerting (torn ankle tendon and three c-sections).  I understand that feeling of hopelessness because you know what should be done but you just can’t do it.  Each of those instances was 6-8 weeks and through them I learned how to manage the musts and let go of the rest.  My mother-in-law also had an autoimmune disease that kept her from the simplest housework tasks and I feel for you if you are suffering from a disease or disability and are looking for some practical tips to fit a routine into your schedule. Here are just a couple suggestions (I could do a whole blog post):

  1. Ask for help – family members, friends, hire help if you can.
  2. Don’t do things that lay you up for the next day – pace yourself so you don’t regret the time spent cleaning.
  3. Split tasks up – if you have 3 bathrooms and you want to clean them yourself, clean one one week on Monday, the next one the following week, and so on.
  4. Use tools that are easy to use – choose tools that feel good in your hands and that you will want to use.
  5. Go slow and keep things as simple as you can.  Add more when you’d able to but don’t overdo it!

I hope you try my routine and find a sense of calm just knowing that you don’t have to think about what to clean and when to clean it.

What are your best tips for implementing a cleaning routine with your schedule?  What have you done that works?

My book Simply Clean will teach you even more about my cleaning routine if you’re looking for a new way to clean.

Check out the links below – I share daily reminders on social media.  Follow what works for you:
Follow Clean Mama on Facebook
Follow Clean Mama on Instagram
Every month I give away a FREE cleaning routine calendar, find it here.
Join my Private FB group – Homekeeping Society
Follow Clean Mama on YouTube
Want my blog posts and newsletters sent straight to your inbox?  Sign up in the sidebar for those posts!

Have you seen my CLEAN MAMA HOMEKEEPING PLANNERS?  They’re available in aqua and periwinkle and the only thing of its kind available for sale anywhere.

Come Clean – Wrap Up

This month we’ve been doing the Come Clean Challenge to jump start the 2016 cleaning calendar theme – Come Clean in 2016.  Each week this month we’ve been doing simple, daily tasks and incorporating them into monthly cleaning routine.  I hope that you’re finding that your house is cleaner and more organized than it was at the beginning of the challenge.

Come Clean Challenge Wrap-Up

Now that the Come Clean Challenge is over, how can you keep up with your homekeeping in the midst of life?  Start by grabbing the FREE February cleaning calendar here.

February 2016 Free Cleaning Calendar - Clean Mama

Make sure you’re getting the support and encouragement you need to keep on cleaning!  Follow along on Instagram, Facebook, and join my private Facebook group – Homekeeping Society – you’ll love the support and other people completing tasks right also side each other.  My monthly subscription – HOMEKEEPING SOCIETY is a great way to keep up with the dailies – go here to check it out.

Then, every day, start with the daily tasks and make sure those get completed – wipe counters, check floors, one load of laundry, clutter THEN when those are completed or started, complete the weekly tasks – Monday is bathrooms day (follow my speed clean plan to get started), Tuesday is dusting day, etc.  I work QUICKLY and get the task finished up in about 15 minutes. Think of ways to maximize your time and effort by adding another task or two to what you’re already working on.

Today is the day for a FINAL SWEEP THROUGH HOME – QUICK CLEAN – Get ready for the week ahead by making sure surfaces remain cleaned off and everything is tidied up.  Relax and enjoy the new habits you’ve formed and the tidy home you’ve achieved this month!

Check out this post with my 3 favorite speed cleaning posts – SPEED CLEANING TO THE RESCUE.

Come Clean Challenge - Clean Mama

New here?  You can still get your FREE Come Clean Challenge worksheet here and complete the challenge anytime!

Catch up on the posts here:

Come Clean Challenge – Free Printable 
Come Clean Challenge Quick Start
Week 1 – Kitchen
Week 2 – Living Spaces
Week 3 – Bathrooms
Week 4 – Bedrooms
Come Clean – Wrap Up

The excitement over Clean Mama HOME has blown me away!  Microfiber is BACK IN STOCK!

Clean Mama Home Microfiber Cloths

Find Out More Homekeeping Society

Free Cleaning Calendar for November 2015

It’s almost November and that means that it’s time for November’s FREE cleaning calendar!

Free Cleaning Routine for November main via Clean Mama

If you’re feeling like you need some help with your cleaning and homekeeping and don’t know where to start, you’re going to love my cleaning routine and calendar. I keep daily homekeeping tasks to 15-30 minutes a day and this simple plan is how I do it! This is a solution for busy households – give it a go, I think you’ll be surprised how a little bit every day can make a huge difference in your home.

Fresh Start Clean+Organized 2015

If you’ve been following Clean Mama for even a week, you know that every day is a chance to start over and so is every week, month, etc. I hope that you find that my cleaning routine is SIMPLE, EASY TO IMPLEMENT, and full of GRACE.

Read on, grab the FREE calendar for November and get ready to see how doing a little bit everyday really is the secret to a clean house.

Cleaning Routine Infographic - Clean Mama

Want to join in on the fun? Grab a FREE cleaning and organizing calendar for November and give it a go. Follow along (subscribe in the sidebar) for motivational posts and tips to keep up with the daily and weekly tasks. I also post daily reminders on Instagram and Facebook!

 

Free Cleaning Routine for November via Clean Mama

Go here to grab your FREE calendar for November 2015! Prefer it in googledocs? Go here.

(Please note: You’ll need to put the calendar in your cart and checkout – it’s still FREE – once you create an account it will save any free printables and you can come back and access them anytime. Upon checkout you’ll see the link for the free calendar AND it will also be emailed to you automatically!)

Find Out More Homekeeping Society

If you like this FREE printable you’ll love my HOMEKEEPING SOCIETY and the organizing printables in my shop!

Clean Mama’s Home Reset – Day 1

Clean Mama's Home Reset Challenge - DAY ONE

I am SO excited to start Clean Mama’s Home Reset with you!  I am working a day ahead on the daily challenge so I have pictures to post for you, but getting just one task completed feels great!  Are you ready to take back your home and feel great about it?  This mini-challenge is designed for you (and me) to concentrate on those clutter collecting areas and spaces that tend to get neglected or put off.  We’re completing the Home Reset tasks while continuing on with the Clean Mama Cleaning Routine – this will ensure forward progress and we’ll get ahead at the same time.  Did you print off your FREE printable guide?  If you didn’t, go here first.

Ready?  Let’s get started!

Weekly Task for today:

Every Monday is BATHROOMS DAY – first things first, clean the bathroom(s) in your home.  If you are new here and haven’t heard about or seen my 15 minute bathroom speed cleaning routine, go here, follow the tasks, and come back here for the next tasks.

Daily Tasks for Today:

Every day I complete these 4 simple tasks (go to this post for more explanation) – complete them when it makes sense for you and your schedule.  Set a timer for 10-15 minutes if you need to, but don’t get hung up on these tasks, they get easier as you follow my routine:

  • check floors
  • clean counters
  • clutter
  • laundry

Home Reset Task:

Once your bathrooms are thoroughly (and quickly) cleaned and you’ve started a load of laundry or swept under the kitchen table, it’s time tackle today’s task to DECLUTTER TOILETRIES.  Here are your simple steps:

  • Set a timer for 15-30 minutes (whatever you have) and choose your spot to declutter.  This can be a drawer, under the sink, a cupboard, a shelf – choose a space that you know you can completely clear and declutter in the time you have.  Start small, if you get going and want to declutter more, keep going!
    Here’s my BEFORE – it took me 30 minutes to completely clear, declutter, and re-organize this space.  I knew ahead of time that I wanted to use larger storage containers to store toiletries so I had the containers on hand.  I had put off doing it for a couple weeks and this challenge is just what I needed to finally sort and declutter the space.
    Toiletries Before via Clean Mama
  • Completely clear and empty the space.  I put everything on the bathroom counter to sort and declutter it.
    Remove everything from the space via Clean Mama
  • Spray and wipe clean.
    Completely clear space and wipe clean via Clean Mama
  • Decide what you can keep and what you can toss – if it’s expired, toss.  If you haven’t used it in a while or forgot why you have it, toss it.  (Make sure you follow your local recycling rules for what can be recycled.)
    Toss Pile and Re-Grouped and Sorted Toiletries via Clean Mama
  • Group like items together to make organizing and finding your toiletries easy. Put items back in a way that makes sense for you and whoever is using the space.  Here’s my AFTER – I have another post soon that goes into a little more detail about how I organized this cabinet, stay tuned.
    Toiletries - After via Clean Mama

Follow along on Instagram – I’ll be keeping an eye out this week for posts with the hashtag #cleanmamashomereset and reposting some of my favorites!

Each of the posts will have these links to the other days so you can catch up or start this challenge anytime:

Clean Mama’s Home Reset – Introduction
Clean Mama’s Home Reset FREE Printable Guide
Day 1
Day 2
Day 3
Day 4
Day 5

Clean Mama's Home Reset Challenge via Clean Mama

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FREE Cleaning Calendar for July 2015

It’s almost July and that means that it’s time for July’s FREE cleaning calendar! If you’re feeling like you need some help with your cleaning and homekeeping and don’t know where to start, you’re going to love my cleaning routine and calendar. I keep daily homekeeping tasks to 15-30 minutes a day and this simple plan is how I do it!  This is a solution for busy households – give it a go, I think you’ll be surprised how a little bit every day can make a huge difference in your home.

Fresh Start Clean+Organized 2015

If you’ve been following Clean Mama for even a week, I hope you know that everyday is a chance to start over and so is every week, month, etc. I hope that you find that my cleaning routine is SIMPLE, EASY TO IMPLEMENT, and full of GRACE.

Read on, grab the FREE calendar for July and get ready to see how doing a little bit everyday really is the secret to a clean house.

Cleaning Routine Infographic - Clean Mama

Want to join in on the fun? Grab a FREE cleaning and organizing calendar for July and give it a go. Follow along for motivational posts and tips to keep up with the daily and weekly tasks. I also post daily reminders on Instagram and Facebook!

Fresh Start Calendary for July 2015 via Clean Mama

Go here to grab your FREE calendar for July 2015! Prefer it in googledocs? Go here.

(Please note: You’ll need to put the calendar in your cart and checkout – it’s still FREE – once you create an account it will save any free printables and you can come back and access them anytime. Upon checkout you’ll see the link for the free calendar AND it will also be emailed to you automatically!)

 

300x300 CMP ad

If you like this FREE printable you’ll love my HOMEKEEPING SOCIETY and the organizing printables in my shop!

Clean + Organized 2013 – FREE May Cleaning Calendar

Ready for this month’s cleaning calendar reset?  I can’t believe that it’s almost May!  Can you?  If you’ve been following along since the beginning, at the end of every month I put up the next month’s free cleaning calendar.  Each day has simple daily tasks listed and one rotating cleaning task.  I find that with a crazy, busy life and schedules all over the place, this is the easiest way to ‘keep up with it all’.

Does every single thing get completed every day?  Not always, but most days.  It works for me and I am so happy to share my ideas with you!  So grab the calendar, print it out, put it somewhere where you’ll see it.  Do a little bit everyday and I promise you  every week will get easier and you’ll see a remarkable improvement in your home.

You can go here to grab your FREE Cleaning Calendar for May!

Need a little more instruction on the schedule?  Here’s a little infographic that explains the schedule a little bit:

Check out the links below:

Interested in my Cleaning Routine? – you can check that out here.

Monday – Bathrooms

Tuesday – Dusting

Wednesday – Vacuum

Thursday – Wash Floors

Friday – Catch-All Day

Saturday – Sheets + Towels

Don’t forget to like me on Facebook and/or Twitter for daily reminders in your feed.  If you’re a Pinterest-er, you can follow me here.   And if you haven’t subscribed to posts in your inbox – just go to the little white box on the sidebar and enter your email address.

Have you seen my shop?   You can click here to go straight to the shop – I’ve added lots of great new products!

Clean + Organized 2012 – FREE December Cleaning Schedule

Can you believe it?  The last cleaning schedule for 2012?   We’ll still be getting ‘Clean and Organized’ around here in 2013.  Look for a continued FREE cleaning schedule every month and some other fantastic happenings around the blog, one of which is a little blog revamp.Heads up to all you Google Friend Connect followers, I’m switching to WordPress so you will need to follow in a new way….may I suggest through email/feedburner (see the little box on the right hand side?  fill your email in there and you’ll never miss a post.)  Or you can always follow on FacebookTwitter, Pinterest, or just by clicking over every once in a while.So…..how about a little cleaning routine for December? If you’re new here, I clean a little bit every day and I share my schedule and tips here on this blog. If you’d like to try my routine this month, you can go here to grab it.

Looking for some other fun forms to help you with your cleaning and homekeeping?   Check out my Etsy shop, Clean Mama Printables.   I have two Cleaning Kits – aqua + lime and brights and I have a brand new Clean House Kit – it’s introductory priced through the week.

Clean + Organized 2012 – FREE November Cleaning Schedule

Ready to reset the ol’ cleaning calendar? How about a little cleaning routine for November?    If you’re new here, I clean a little bit every day and I share my schedule and tips here on this blog. If you’d like to try my routine this month, you can go here to grab it.
Follow me on Facebook and get my daily picture reminders in your feed!

 

Clean + Organized 2012 – Free October Cleaning Schedule

Ready to reset the ol’ cleaning calendar? How about a little cleaning routine for October?  If you’re new here, I clean a little bit every day and I share my schedule and tips here on this blog. If you’d like to try my routine this month, you can go here to grab it.

Monday (October 1st) is the big kick off for 31 Days to a Clean House – if you are ‘in’, you can do this October cleaning schedule right along with the 31 Days challenge.  I have it planned out so our days will correlate with the daily cleaning routine, with the intention being to not create more work.  Work smarter, not harder, right?  It’s going to be a month of little things we can do every day to get your house clean and figure out how to keep it that way.  I don’t know about you, but when the house is tidy, it feels like home and it’s just more relaxing to be in.

Follow me on Facebook and get my daily picture reminders in your feed!

Clean + Organized 2012 – FREE September Cleaning Schedule

Ready to reset the cleaning calendar?  How about a little cleaning routine for September?  If you’re new here, I clean a little bit every day and I share my schedule and tips here on this blog.  If you’d like to try my routine this month, you can go here to grab it.  (update:  there was an error on the original calendar (oops) – this has been corrected on the free download and on the picture below)
You’ll notice that Fridays are a ‘catch-all day’ – I usually pay some bills and plan the menu for the next week on Fridays, but I also like to use it as a day to get caught up on anything that needs to be done before the weekend.
If you follow me on Facebook and get my daily picture reminders, you will see this one for Fridays in your feed….

Clean + Organized 2012 – Free Cleaning Schedule – August

If you’re like me, I’m starting to feel the end of the summer upon us and new school routines looming in the future.  I’m also feeling the need to get a couple things done to prepare for the upcoming busy-ness that a change in season can bring.  Hopefully if you’ve been following along (even slightly) to my cleaning routine, that’s one less thing that you have to worry about.  If you’re new here, I’m all about simple routines and no guilt.  If you don’t vacuum this week, you can do it next week – NOT A BIG DEAL.  Or at least that’s how I roll around my house.  So today I present to you the cleaning routine for August – follow along on Facebook for little reminders and get on the Clean Mama bandwagon where if you fall off, you can hop back on the next day, week, or month.
You can go here to grab your free August cleaning schedule – come back on Monday, I’ll be kicking off an end of summer project series!

Clean Mama Blog Homekeeping

Every once in a while, I feel like I need to update you on some happenings behind the scenes here at the blog and in my shop.  Summer is so busy and I know that you are busy too, so I’ll keep this brief.

If you’re interested in creating a Homekeeping Binder, I’ve updated this post to include the new kits that I’ve been slowly adding to the shop.  If you are inspired to create a binder for yourself or add to a binder that you’ve already made, you can use the code 20HOME for 20% off your entire order through 7/21/2012 at 8pm EST.  (I have added a few new kits and calendars if you are interested in taking a peek.)
Just out of curiosity, is there anyone out there that hasn’t purchased on Etsy because you don’t want or have a Paypal account?  I’m looking into adding the credit card option, but want to make sure it’s something my customers would be interested in.
And for a few social media updates…..
If you don’t already subscribe to the blog via feedburner, you can hop over to the subscribe box on the sidebar and add your email address to get new blog posts delivered straight to your inbox.
How about Facebook?  Make sure you add me to your daily feed if you want to see the little daily cleaning reminders, like this:
You can find me onPinterest and Twitter as well.
Anything else you’d like to see?  I have a freebie for you later this week and a summer menu planning idea for you too.
As always, THANK YOU for coming here to this little spot – my hope is that I inspire you to make homekeeping a little less work and a bit more fun!

Clean + Organized – July’s Free Cleaning Schedule

It’s time for July’s monthly cleaning/organizing schedule!  July is a  great time to re-evaluate goals you set back in January and start fresh if you need to.   I hope that my schedules give you a little guidance and direction on where to start when it comes to cleaning and maintaining your home.

Why would a person want to establish a cleaning routine?  Here’s why it works for me:

You cango here to grab your own July Cleaning Schedule – Happy Cleaning!  Don’t forget to ‘like’ Clean Mama on Facebook for daily (morning) reminders in your feed.  You can also follow along in your inbox with posts emailed to your inbox by entering your email in that little box to the right.If you like my cleaning routine, you’ll love my New Cleaning Kit!

Clean your Bathrooms in 15 Minutes (or Less)

Life Your Way

Today I’m over at Life…Your Way with my method for cleaning all my bathrooms in 15 minutes.  (Yes, it can be done, and yes it’s really cleaning them!)  You can go here to see for yourself.

Overwhelmed? Find success in your homekeeping with my latest book, Simply Clean! Dismiss