Thursday, May 10, 2012

It's not just guys that don't like to clean...

A dear friend of ours had shared with us some frustrations she has with cleaning. I asked her if she would be willing to write out her story for us to share on this blog, and below you will find her words. I hope you find her story inspirational in your quest to have a clean home. 

I don't like to clean. It's just not in my nature. It's not that I like being a slob, I actually LOVE a clean environment/dwelling, maybe lightly cluttered, it's just that at any given moment, there's a gazillion things I'd rather be doing than cleaning.
I'm an artist. A single artist, living alone. Well, living with cats. What this means is that I have a full time job to make sure the bills get paid, I have a full time job's worth of work (or more) that I WANT to do in order to scratch the ever-present creative itch, and I have three furry entities/creatures that actively work against me in almost everything I do, with the exception of feeding them and generally paying attention to them. Top that off with a need to just relax once in a while and some friends that I like to spend time with, and you can imagine the battles cleaning has to fight just to win fifth place in my day's priorities.  And that's a best case scenario, I actually have a few creative career visions I pursue (creating comics, chinese brush painting to name the top 2) and a minor hobby developing (basic sewing in the form of t-shirt conversion).
So the dishes often get left in the living room for a little too long. The clothes may stay in the dryer for a few days before spending the rest of their time in the 'clean' laundry basket, before they go on to be worn and transition to the hamper. Many clothes never see the inside of a closet or drawer. The dirty dishes may further pile up in the sink because the dishwasher is occupied by clean dishes.  And every last piece of clothing I have will always have cat fur on it no matter how fresh from the dryer it is/how recently it was pulled from the dryer.
Just to make sure I'm not painting a much worse picture than it actually is, I *do* shower every day and the kitchen is clean enough that I do not fear for food poisoning. I'm not *that* much of a slob. There's hope for me.  
And I'm starting to suspect that hope lies in a schedule. You know, breaking it up into manageable tasks each day so I can think things like "if I just take care of the sink now, tomorrow I'll clean the living room." I think it might play much better than, "ugh, I need to clean, but what should I do first?!" in the face of major build-up. Theoretically, each day would only have a small time sacrifice, each week it would get easier, going into a maintenance mode rather than always feeling like I have to prepare for battle that will exhaust me before I'm 1/4 done and long before I see the results.
There's more than a few websites out there to get me started. I plan on pulling the best (for me) out of each and formulating my own plan.
I'm in good position to start this experiment.  I've transitioned from a "go to work" situation to a "work at home for the most part" one, so my schedule is to a much larger degree in my control. I just moved into a new place and while there's a lot of boxes & such still laying about, I haven't completely messed it up to the point where the national guard should be called. In short, the slate is cleaner than usual and I have more resources. I once again have a place big enough to invite people over, so I have inspiration to keep things reasonably presentable. 
Wish me luck!!

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