I used to really hate doing household chores.
Seriously, I HATED it.
For me, it was just one MORE thing I HAD to do – and always felt like it was only ME responsible for cleaning house (regardless of WHO made the mess).
It’s a very common issue for ALL busy moms!
But this year, something changed in me – call it a paradigm shift, if you want… or a EUREKA moment… or even a “something’s gotta GIVE” type of moment…
I stopped looking at cleaning house as an OBLIGATION and instead, I started looking at my household chores as an opportunity.
An opportunity for WHAT?
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It was that change of thought from obligation to opportunity that changed me view on household chores and cleaning house.
I started seeing those seemingly endless, day to day household chores as an opportunity to live the life I wanted to live, in a HOME I WANTED to live in, they way I wanted to do it.
The results of my housework became a sense of accomplishment, pride and ENJOYMENT as opposed to yet another thankless task I was expected to do for my kids and family.
After I put the 6 tips below into action, I cleaned MY way, on MY terms and…
I actually began to enjoy doing household chores!
Here are some tips and tricks to help YOU learn how to enjoy doing the household chores in your home – on your terms (and yes, on YOUR terms is KEY here).
6 Rules For Enjoying Housework
- – You are NOT the MAID
- – No More Passive Aggressive Cleaning
- – Make a List
- – Make a Plan
- – Have Your Family Meeting
- – Don’t Be Afraid To Go On “Strike”
I found that as long as I allowed my kids, husband, family… DOG… treat me like the maid, the more I FELT like the maid (and an UNpaid maid, at that!)
That HAD to stop.
But stopping that required two things:
1) I had to be clear with MYSELF on what I did and did not expect from those I felt I was always cleaning up after, and
2) I had to communicate those expectations to my family in a way I felt heard and understood.
That required a family meeting (yes, even the dog attended lol!).
I sat everyone down and clearly explained what my expectations were AND my plan to get there.
Thankfully, I didn’t have to nag, scream or demand “respect”, I simply made it clear that I expected respect – and help.
What IS ‘Passive Aggressive Cleaning’?
Have you ever been pissed off cleaning yet another mess made by someone else, yet cleaning it anyway? AND you’re still mad and pissed off AFTER cleaning it up… yet again?
But you NEVER say anything about it in a constructive way?
That’s Passive Aggressive Cleaning.
You do it, never feel appreciated for it, bottle up those feelings of anger and resentment…yet never say or do anything to change it (other that lost your sh*t now and then).
If you ever want to get to the point of truly enjoying doing household chores, that behavior has to STOP.
This might sound nuts, but… every time you feel you had to clean up after a family member that you really shouldn’t have to – write it down on a running list.
For example, and this might sound silly, unless you’re a busy mom like I am…
Every damn time I go in the kid’s bathroom, there is at LEAST one hunk of toothpaste in the sink… just stuck there.
Apparently, I’m the only one that can see it?
Perhaps I’m the only one capable of removing said chunk of toothpaste?
That totally went on my list.
Here’s another example…
Every single time a kid poured a bowl of cereal, there was not only milk splashes on the kitchen counter, but said bowl was tossed in the sink without rinsing it out.
That also went on the list.
Now, you shouldn’t be making this list from a place of anger…
Instead, think of it as research for your plan and how you’d like things to be AFTER these changes are made
Now that you have your list, start crafting your plan of how YOU would really love for things to be when you go to do your household chores.
I made chore charts for the kids.
I made a cleaning checklist like one of these on my refrigerator.
Those things really helped.
Now, it’s time to sit the whole crew down and talk about YOUR expectations.
My husband caught on quickly, but I had to be a bit more firm with my kids.
I needed more of the “If This, Then That” type of rules.
If I come in to clean your bathroom, and there are toothpaste chunks in the sink, YOU will clean the bathroom.
Be clear, be fair…. but be firm (and stick to it!)
Changing things in your family and the messes they leave behind for you can take some time to perfect – and there very well might be some bumps in the road.
The biggest challenge I met when first doing this?
“Aw, Mom doesn’t REALLY mean it – she’s just mad”
So, I went on strike.
Not out of anger, but as a clear consequence of what happens if we all don’t do what is expected of them according to MY plan.
The Great Strike of 2020 didn’t last long at all lol!
I literally treated the house the same way the rest of them did.
I made MY food and left crap all over the place… Left my laundry where ever I wanted (perhaps I felt it needed to be piled on my husband’s recliner lol!)…
In short, I did what THEY do – then chilled in my room binging watching my shows and surfing Facebook.
Oh, and the bedroom door was locked haha!
It didn’t take long before the kids and my hubby started texting me asking what was wrong, why did I have messes everywhere, etc.
Heck, I think even the DOG texted me lol!
I simply replied:
“Clean up MY messes and agree to go back to The Plan and the Strike will be over”
It took about an hour – haha!
Going “On Strike” will be a HUGE test of YOUR resolve for things to be different, so be prepared for that and do NOT cave in.
Now that you have removed the messes you should NOT be cleaning, it’s time to learn some ways to have fun… yes, actually ENJOY doing household chores.
How To Have Fun When Cleaning House
If you are a woman who complains, “I hate housework!” or “I am tired of cleaning the house!”, these 10 ideas below might really change things up for you.
Feel free to ‘steal’ all 10 of my ideas – or only one or two – just try them all to see which help you enjoy what you’re doing.
Won’t be long before you’re cleaning like this:
10 Ways To Make Cleaning FUN
- Music, Music, MUSIC
- Clean When YOU Are Motivated To Do It
- Pay Yourself
- Make a Game Of It
- Clean Alone
- Take Before/After Pictures
- Check It Off
- Appreciate ‘Clean Enough’
- Get Cute Cleaning Supplies
- Have a Day Off
Music is my KEY to fun house cleaning. I crank up all those up-beat songs that get me moving… and make me HAPPY. And yes, I also sing at the top of my lungs.
My kids have told me:
“Whenever I hear “Shake It Off” start playing, I know that vacuum cleaner is gonna start going next”
Need some cleaning music to motivate you?
I listen to this playlist ALL the time – it’s fun, upbeat… and keeps me moving (and singing!)
I have read so many ‘experts’ say to only clean in the morning…
Girl, I am NOT a morning person – It’s cool if YOU are, but I am not… at all.
I clean best at night – so that’s when I do it.
My rules =)
If you have to force yourself to clean when your body is NOT motivated to do anything, you will NOT enjoy the process.
You don’t work for free! Your time is just as valuable as everyone else’s time, right?
So, pay yourself!
It doesn’t have to be money – it could be something you want, like a certain pair of jeans… or even a nice, long bubble bath ALONE.
Or heck, every day when you’re done with the household chores, put a $5 bill in a jar (yes, even if it’s YOUR $5 bill) – then, after a set amount of time – spend that money on YOU.
I like to set a timer and push myself to do as much as I can in that amount of time.
Yep, I push that button on my phone and say:
“Hey Siri, remind me in one hour that I am DONE cleaning for today”
It sure works for me =)
I know, everyone says to get a friend to help you clean, or have the whole family clean with you….
I prefer to clean alone.
It makes cleaning harder for me when everyone is under my feet.
Ultimately, I prefer to clean when I am totally alone in the house and just do my thing MY way.
I don’t do this often, but I have taken before and after pictures of areas I have cleaned.
It’s usually areas like my linen closet or kitchen cabinets or the pantry, etc – but SEEING the results of my work really inspires me to clean more.
If you’re a list maker, like I am, make a list of your cleaning chores for that day.
Don’t go BIG with items like “clean the kitchen” – break it down into individual and specific areas to clean.
__ Clean Microwave
__Wipe Off Kitchen Table
That way, you will have a LOT of things to check off when you’re DONE – and checking chores off is FUN.
These 4 words really changed the way I go about cleaning – it was like a light bulb moment that took ALL the pressure OFF and enabled me to truly enjoy doing household chores and housework.
This idea might sound silly, but it works.
I had this broom and dustpan that just sucked.
The broom was too bulky and ugly and didn’t sweep well – and the dustpan never laid completely flat on the floor – just SO annoying.
One day I thought – “If I HATE my cleaning supplies, of COURSE I’ll hate cleaning with them!”
So, I bought new, cute and USEFUL cleaning supplies that helped me enjoy using them.
Everyone gets a day off – including YOU.
Part of my plan with my family was that I get a day off every week.
On that day off, THEY were in charge of the daily cleaning and household chores.
Nope, they didn’t do things just as I would – but they cleaned well enough that the next day was not a total disaster and harder to clean.
And ohhhhh, how I look forward to my days off!
It sure makes the other days I’m cleaning house MUCH more enjoyable!
I sure hope something here will help YOU enjoy doing household chores and have FUN doing them!