Preemptive Strike - Clear the Clutter
Before you get started cleaning, we recommend taking this opportunity to rid your house of unwanted items that have accumulated over the years. If you can make time for this, take an extra day before you dive into the cleaning process and clear your home of any excess clutter. You probably have a closet with some unwanted possessions that no longer serve you or a box or two or items you've been meaning to drop off at the donation center. Purging junk is an easy way to reduce the stress of cleaning while providing you with a more orderly, elegant home. According to a study done by the Princeton University Neuroscience Department*, evidence suggests that the nature of our environment (i.e. cluttered versus uncluttered) directly affects our ability to focus. A messy environment can hinder our ability to concentrate, process information, and can cause susceptibility to distraction. On the other hand, a clean, organized environment can promote brain function, increase our focus, and help reduce stress.
If you aren't ready to start taking stuff down to the Goodwill just yet, then you can at least begin organizing your home. This can be as simple as going through your house and putting things back where they belong; if something doesn't have a designated spot, go ahead and make one. These actions will help prep and clear your mind for the cleaning tasks ahead.
Make a Plan of Action
Preparing your home for guests or parties can be an overwhelming process, especially if you leave everything to the last minute. If you take a few extra moments and plan your cleaning assault in advance, it can save you loads of stress and time. Rather than diving in and mindlessly scrubbing without a game plan, set aside a couple of minutes to strategize your attack. It's an investment that pays off with more efficient progress down the line.
Step 1 - Perform a quick walk through of your home. Take note of all the things you notice that you want to wash or spruce up. Next, begin visualizing all the places you'd like to be clean and the extent of their desired cleanliness. Write down all the different areas and rooms of your project and their individual cleaning tasks.
Step 2 - Depending on how many days you have before guests arrive, break up the chores by area, then break down the areas into their separate tasks. Afterward, assign each area and their task a day to get cleaned. We recommend starting this at least a couple of days and up to a week before your holiday shindigs begin.
Step 3 - Schedule the tough projects and the things that don't need frequent attention, such as deep cleaning the kitchen and bathroom, or washing window and shower curtains, for the early days in your plan. Schedule the tasks that require more consistent attention, such as mopping the floor, vacuuming, and cleaning the toilet bowl, for the later days on your timeline.
Create a Backup Plan
Things don't always go as smoothly as we hope, and sometimes, we just run out of time to do everything we set out to. While you're creating your action plan, highlight the areas and tasks that can be on your 'essential list,' things that are critical for you to accomplish. This list serves as a resource if you do run out of time and only can get to a few, necessary items. This way, when you reach the 11th hour before the holidays, you can revert to your crucial items and clean those most important areas, without any extra panic or wasted effort.
For your priority list, think of where your guests are likely to gather or spend significant time. For example, when preparing to host people over the holidays, you'll remember that folks tend to congregate around the food. A few key things to clean in your kitchen will likely be essentials. So, create your list of areas and then highlight the imperative tasks. Using the same example, if you wanted to cleanse your oven, but you’ll only be using it for baking a few items, it likely won't make the cut. In contrast, the refrigerator will be something often accessed by guests and anyone who's using the kitchen, so it’s reasonable it will be on the priority list.
One of the most effective ways to get cleaning done fast and efficiently is to enroll the others around you in assisting. Your family is a great place to start. Another benefit of having a gameplan, in this case, is you can easily assign different tasks to family members for each day and split up the work in an organized fashion. Another option is to get a maid service to help out at home. Sometimes we just don't have the time or energy to clean and need all the help we can get.
Maintain Your Environment
Once you begin executing your cleaning plan, it will be much easier to keep your home clean. The challenge is to make upkeep a habit. For example, if you've thoroughly cleaned your kitchen, but continue to create crowded, untidy countertops every time you use it, without putting things away, this can accumulate and make the room feel sloppy. Make it a habit to clear your counters immediately after they get cluttered, not to mention any other messes you create. Rather than letting things build up and create an additional big cleaning project, this practice will maintain cleanliness with minimal effort.
Invest in Some Quality Green Cleaning Products
Creating a spotless home doesn't require a lot of fancy products to get started, you only need a few things. In fact, you could probably get away with just one or two. Invest in a couple of quality green cleaning products. Not only are you helping the environment but you're eliminating any harsh chemical residues leftover from standard cleaning products. Your guests and family will appreciate knowing their health and well-being is taken care of at your home. Mrs. Meyers makes an eco-friendly countertop spray and an all purpose cleaner, both in a lovely range of scents. But don't let a lack of ingredients stop you from getting started on cleaning. A solution of water and vinegar can work wonders with efforts such as mopping floors, wiping countertops and even creating streak-free, clear windows.
With the holidays fast approaching and everything to do to prepare, a thorough house cleaning can easily get overlooked. If you can remember to follow this plan in advance, it will help you manage your tasks efficiently and accurately, while significantly reducing the stress of the job. If you need some extra assistance, visit our for a green, house cleaning service. Lotus Cleaning Services is an eco-friendly maid service, and we would love to give your home the care it deserves to get it sparkling clean in time for the holidays.
This guest post was provided by:
Author: Lotus Cleaning Team
Author/ Company Bio: Lotus Cleaning Services is made up of dedicated home and office cleaning professionals, that have used green practices to serve San Francisco, Oakland, Berkeley and their surrounding areas since 2006.