Modern*Simplicity

Creating a Life Free From Chaos

How to Motivate Yourself to Clean and Organize Your Home

It’s easy to let things go around the house, and before you know it, you’re drowning in dirty laundry, junk mail, and leftover snack plates. A clean, clutter-free home is more comfortable, and it can also boost your self-esteem, enhance your social life, and save you money. When you can easily find what you need, you can avoid buying extraneous stuff, and you’ll feel more confident in your abilities to stay on top of your world. A clean home also frees you up to invite friends over and gives you more time to go out, instead of staying home looking for your keys. Although cleaning and decluttering might seem like a daunting task, you don’t have to feel overwhelmed. Getting motivated is half the battle. With a few simple tips, you can have your home cleaned and organized in no time.

How to Motivate Yourself to Clean and Organize Your Home

Make a plan.

Start with the area that bothers you the most. It can be a small area, such as your desk or bed, or an entire room, such as the kitchen, bedroom, or bathroom. It’s hard to clean an entire home at once, so break it into smaller areas or zones. Grab a trash bag, a box for donations, and a laundry basket for items that belong in a different room. Declutter the area, put things back where they belong, then clean up. Check out this series on did about decluttering and cleaning each area of your home.

Set a deadline.

Give yourself a time frame, and mark it on the calendar. Even better, plan a party or gathering at your place. It will motivate you to get your place clean in time for the festivities.

Enlist friends to help.

If possible, grab a couple of close friends or family members to help sort, clean, and organize. They can encourage you as well as provide extra hands for heavy lifting.

Work in intervals.

Use a timer and work in increments, with small breaks for getting drinks, using the restroom, etc. Try using the Pomodoro Technique to break the time into intervals. Knowing you only have to work until the timer goes off can help motivate you to keep going. Race yourself to see how much you can do before the timer goes off. Turn on some upbeat music to keep you going, and don’t stop to talk on the phone or watch TV. If you can’t finish the entire space in one day, do what you can, and start again in your next pocket of free time.

Just Pretend.

Sometimes, making up a story in your head can inspire you to keep cleaning. If you have too much stuff and need the motivation to declutter, pretend you’re moving overseas into an eclectic loft and can’t fit all your possessions. The fantasy may help you unload a few more items. May sound silly, but I’ve seen it work countless times!

Reward Yourself.

For every area you get clean, give yourself a little reward — a long soak in your newly cleaned tub, a gourmet snack in your scrubbed kitchen, or a new candle for your perfectly prepped bedroom. It’s so much nicer to spend time at home when it’s clutter-free and clean.

How do you get motivated to clean up?

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12 Replies

  1. Great article with plenty of practical suggestions. I liked the suggestion of setting a timer and then trying to beat it. That sounds just like something I’d like doing.

  2. As a writer and creative, I love pretending. Why not make cleaning an adventure? Great tips here to get the job done. Thanks, Sandy!

    1. Thanks Frank! Making it an adventure might get my boys in on the action!

  3. Great article! I can especially relate to the setting a deadline suggestion. I know when I plan a party it will kick my behind into gear. Great tips, especially under the “Make a Plan” heading. Shared!

  4. I like setting a deadline. Sometimes I use a timer. Power clean for an hour and see how much can be accomplished. The results are amazing. Thanks for other actionable tips!

    1. A good timers is one of my best friends 🙂

  5. I imagine what I want my life to look like down the road and I declutter with an eye toward down-sizing.

  6. Tony

    Hi I ‘am Tony. Sorry for such a late hello.

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