As a mom and a women, I often hear my friends discuss the challenges that come from organizing and maintaining their homes differently than their spouse or children. I have had similar challenges in my home. Recently, I have been thinking about this problem. Wow, it is hard to organize for a family.
Before we move in with someone or get married, we discuss many different things, such as children, finances, religion, etc. We often do not discuss how we are going to cohabitate in the sense of organizing and maintaining your space, organizing for your family. As with most couples, opposites attract. Now as I have said before, I believe everyone is organized in their own way. BUT that leads to many different styles under one roof! This to me is a recipe for conflict, which many of you may have already experienced.
Maybe you find that your spouse is a visual person. So, he sets up the kitchen or needs to have everything on the counter and within an arms reach. Not wrong. But if you like to have clear counters….well we know where this story goes. It leads to conflict. It is leads to stress because you may consistently spend time picking up the counter and putting everything away. Your spouse then comes in and pulls it all back out! YIKES!
This conflict of interest, if you will, can cause one of both people stress, decreased energy, frustration, resentment, etc. Then you add kids into the picture and you have more CLUTTER! The toys are on the floor, the kids clothes are in the corner, etc. It is a never ending to-do list that leaves you overwhelmed and exhausted!
I hear you tired Momma! Relief is on the way.
Like with anything, there needs to be clear communication and compromise. Well, how do you correct this issue?
Are you ready to see great improvement in your home and have a well maintained living space (most days) that both you, your significant other, and your kids?
Through co-organizing, you can create a sustainable, organized environment that will strengthen the relationships you have with your family, increase your energy, and help you thrive instead of survive your motherhood! You can organize for your family no matter the size, your budget, or how different you all are.
What is co-organizing you ask?
Well, let me just unlock this little secret for you! Co-organizing is a simple process that yields results because it clearly helps families identify the life they want to live, their pain points, how each person organizes, and how to organize for your family with sustainable results.
Step 1: Define the your definition of an Intentional Life
Sit down with your spouse and children to determine what they imagine for an intentional life.
How do you want to feel when you come home?
What type of activities do you do in each room of your home?
How does your family work, play, and live together?
What are your values?
Once you know where you want to go, you have a foundation to build on. We will know how to set up your home to fit you and your family.
Step 2: Determine what each person likes or does not like about each room in your home.
Sit down and brainstorm about what is working and what does not work. Understanding each person needs and vision for the areas help us learn a little bit more about how to set up room.
Step 3: Get your Nancy Drew on!
Observe your home for a few days to a week. Make note of where clutter piles up. Do those things have a home? Does their current location make sense to everyone? Could you cleverly add a bin or hamper in this location to “catch” the clutter or create organization?
Look out for those pain points, the sources for opportunity.
Step 4: Determine Each Person Organization Style
- Clutter Keeper: This individual likes to visually have their objects or items on display. They may fear losing something or misplacing things. If these things are put away, this person may feel like they will forget about it or not know where it is. This individual may struggle with throwing things away or getting rid of clutter. They may hold onto objects because they are fearful they may need it later.
- The Piler: This individual likes to keep things in piles. They may categorize their piles similar to how another person may have a file system. Having these piles may feel like their belongings or papers are more accessible to them.
- The Stuffer: This individual likes the idea of having a home clear of clutter. When you visit their living space it appears that everything is clean and organized. When you open a drawer, closet, or bin you may see a lot of things stuffed in a location. They may try to clean quickly and put things out of sight. This causes the person to lose many of their items.
- The Strict Structure Keeper: This individual hates clutter and likes clear counters. They may enjoy color coding, bins, and complex organizing systems. Organizing is their jam!
Remember one person can exhibit multiple trains or fit into.
THAT’S A LOT OF WORK. Almost there.
We know where you want to go as a family, we have identified your pain points, and we know how each person organizes.
Now, we need to start tackling the hard stuff. We need to put it all together.
Step 5: Team work makes the dream work
Go from room to room as a family. Purge, rehome, and organize. Remember what you have learned about the members in your household and involve them in the process. Their buy-in is everything!
Step 6: Develop rules for maintaining as a family
Yes, maintain as a family. Mom you have A LOT to do already. It does not kill anyone to help out around the house. Age appropriate work will help train up your kids to be successful adults. Of course play time is important. Your kids are not housekeeper. There definitely needs to be balance.
Defining the rules. What does this mean?
Well, what are the conditions in which your family wants to keep the house clean. Now, perfection is not sustainable. It is not even attainable, especially when you consider the number of kids you have, their ages, etc. In your current season of life, kick perfection to the curb and realize there is beauty in simplicity.
In my house, our MUST HAVES for daily maintenance to preserve my sanity and his!
- Clean Floors: So, I do not define this as every day we vacuum, mop, etc. This is just not sustainable in our home. We define this as no toys or anything on the ground by end of day.
- Clean Sinks: I really do not like a dirty sink. YUCK! So, that means (most nights) all dishes are done and the both sinks are wiped down.
- Clean Kitchen: I hate waking up to a dirty kitchen. In all honesty, neither one of us feels like we can cook when the kitchen is dirty and cluttered. So, counters are wiped down and things are put away before bed.
- A load of laundry a day keeps the MOUND of laundry away. Self explanatory. With a family, you have mountains of laundry weekly if you let it pile up.
- 20 minute spruce up: Set an alarm for 20 minutes and pick up anything that you see that needs a little attention. For those with young kids, this can be combined with bath time or right before. Let me let you in on a little secret – this 20 minute clean almost always covers step 1, 2, and 3.
TIPS for Sustainability:
BATCH CLEAN Your Little Heart Out:
Create a weekly schedule. If you touch each room in your house every day, then by the weekend you will not have ALL the cleaning waiting for you. Involve every member of the house.
Multi – task with Clean BURSTs:
As a busy working mom, you are cleaning in the margins. You are fitting things into your schedule in briefs moments as the kids are playing nicely, bathing, etc. This is working smarter not harder. Your time is valuable and energy is short some days.
When the kids are bathing, wipe down the bathroom. They are occupied and you likely cannot really go far, so take advantage of this time.
When you are in the bathroom (doubtful you are in their alone), do a quick clean of the toilet bowl.
As you are brushing your teeth, wipe down the sink or the tub.
While you are cooking dinner, you may have a good 30 minutes or so to put things away, wipe down counters as you go, and do some dishes.
While you are binge watching Netflix or your kids are quietly playing (you may only have 20 minutes – so work fast), fold some laundry. It is okay to amuse them for a moment with Daniel Tiger’s Neighborhood or another one of their favorite shows.
Really the possibilities are endless. You may need to be a little creative, but once you start thinking about your time this way, you may be surprised how many minutes of the day you can “save” by multi-tasking.
Now, your weekend can be a true time to relax. These little steps will keep the Clutter tornado away and you in a more productive, joyful state. Your mood will improve and so will your families’ mood. Your relationships will be strengthened because you will be happier and you will have more time to spend together. So, really a little work up front has lasting effects!
Need a little help getting started or building your co-organizing story? I want to help. Go to services and connect with me today. Don’t prolong the survival mode any longer, if you can begin to thrive in your motherhood and your home today!
Thank you for stopping by!