An easy weekly house cleaning schedule your entire family can use together.
Easy Weekly House Cleaning Schedule
The house that cleans itself has not yet been invented. Housecleaning can feel like a big chore at times. You want your house to be clean and neat, yet it may seem that every time you walk into a room it is worse than when you left it. (Or is that just me and our home…)
So, how can you keep your house clean with little ones running around, teenagers eating every five minutes, and a busy schedule? It is possible. Two tips are vital: mindset and cooperation. Having a mindset of gratitude for your home and all God has given you and your family is important. Cooperation-everyone in your family working together to keep your home clean and neat is necessary.
Mindset is key.
It may sound odd at first to start a conversation about housecleaning by talking about mindset, but when you think about it, you will see why it is important.
Our mindest is how we look at something: the attitudes, ideas, and thoughts we have about it. These internal thoughts manifest in our actions and our words.
Has one of your children ever said in despair, “I’ll never get it! I shouldn’t even try.”? Do you tell them that they are right, or do you encourage them to try again or give them pointers to help them out? Our mindest can become a self-fulfilling prophecy if we are not careful.
What do you say about housework or about your home? Do you say things like, “I hate housework!” and “Nobody does anything around here. I have to do everything myself”? Or, do you say things like, “I am thankful for our home.” or “We need to take care of the home and things God has given us”?
When we have gratitude in our hearts and minds, we speak and act differently. Housework is not such a chore when you think of how your cleaning benefits yourself, your family, and shows God your gratitude to Him for what He has given to you.
Imagine getting the stomach flu in the middle of the night. Won’t you be glad then that you took the time to clean the toilet? Or when it is time to cook a meal, aren’t you glad that your husband washed the dishes so they are ready to be used for the next meal?
When we show our gratitude in our thoughts, it manifests in our words and actions. This also works the other way around: when we speak gratitude with our words, it helps us to truly have gratitude in our hearts and in our actions. When you thank God for the laundry we are washing because it means you and your family have clothes to wear, you feel more gratitude in your heart.
Remember, too, that your kids are listening to what you say. Do you want them to hear you say “I hate housework!” or do you want them to hear you say, “I am cleaning our home because I want to show God my gratitude for His blessings.”?
See Learning to be Greatful for more on this topic.
Time to clean up! Cooperation is key.
Now, let’s put that mindset of gratitude into action and clean up! Here are some action steps you can follow to include all members of your family in cleaning your home weekly.
Get the whole family involved.
Whoever contributes to the mess, the spills, and the clutter during the week gets to help clean it up. This means everyone who lives in your home.
From toddlers to teens, everyone should be expected to help. Assign each person age-appropriate tasks. Also, you can pair up a toddler with a parent or an older sibling to work together as a team. The toddler can be the helper.
Yes, toddlers are little, but, as you know, toddlers want to do what everyone else is doing! “Me, too” or “I do it!” are common statements we often hear toddlers say. Let them help. Don’t discourage them! If what clean is not perfect, that is okay. This is how they will learn how to clean and pick up after themselves. When they have a partner to work with, they will have someone to help them learn, someone they can copy.
See Establishing Chores for Kids for more ideas.
Plan ahead-what day and time will work together to clean your home?
Set aside a specific time each week when you will clean together as a family. Even though family members will be working on different parts of your home, when everyone is working at the same time, it is motivating.
If you need some more motivation, you can plan a fun activity to do together afterward, like a family game, a walk, or going to the park.
Divide and conquer.
Split up your home into sections. Each person or each group will clean just one part of your home and well as their own bedrooms. When each person or group tackles cleaning a different part of your home, it goes faster. Your home will be clean in no time.
Use your chore chart to know who is doing what in the house.
If you don’t have a chore chart already set up for your home, here is a chore chart post you can read about implementing this simple idea: How to Create a Family Chore Chart. It will make a positive difference in your home!
On a family chore chart, each child is in charge of a certain part of the home for a month. When it is time to clean, each child cleans the section of your home that he or she had been assigned for the month. This cuts down on squabbling over who is cleaning what or who did what last time!
You can divide your home up into different sections and assign someone to be in charge of each section. For instance, some sections you may choose are: kitchen, living room, family room, entryway and porch, and bathroom and hallway.
Each family member is in charge of picking up their own items that are around the home (like those socks in the living room or the stuffed animal in the bathroom) and putting them away. Next, each family member can vacuum and dust (like the living room or family room) or sweep and clean (like the kitchen or bathroom) the room they are assigned to.
It is that simple!
Everyone cleans their own room.
Each person is in charge of cleaning their own bedroom. The kids can pick up dirty clothes, toys, and other items that have gone astray and put them where they belong.
If two or more kids share a room, they can divide up the chores. One can vacuum and the other can dust. Or, if they have divided the room down the middle (like two of our kids have done) they can each vacuum and dust their own section of the bedroom.
What about cleaning during the week?
During the week, you may need to mop up a spill in the kitchen or clean the bathroom countertops. You will probably want to clean off the kitchen counters and stove each day as well as make sure toys get put away by the end of each day. This will make your weekly housecleaning much easier to do since you have been maintaining things during the week. Conversely, keeping things maintained during the week is easier when you and your family are cleaning your home weekly.
The purpose of weekly cleaning is to make the time to get the things done that do not need to be done every day, yet should be done weekly.
What about deep cleaning?
When you schedule cleaning once a week like this, you are keeping your home maintained. Things like washing windows, cleaning the floorboards, or washing dirty fingerprints off doors can be added into your weekly house cleaning whenever you see fit.
The purpose of having a cleaning schedule/plan for your family is to benefit your family and its needs, it does not need to be a rigid schedule that causes you extra stress.
Helpful idea: Make a list.
It may be helpful to write out a list for your home. On this list, you can write out every cleaning chore that needs to be done. Then, categorize your list into four sections: daily, weekly, monthly, and quarterly/occasionally. This way, you will know how often things need to get done and you can plan accordingly.
Enjoy the process.
Make cleaning fun! You can put some music on, race each other, or all race a timer to see how quickly you can finish. When you hear complaints (or catch yourself saying them), you can help to reframe them with words of gratitude for your home and your blessings.
You can all take your shoes off, spray the kitchen floor with soapy water form a squirt bottle, and dance on rags to clean the floor. (Just be careful not to get it too wet so you don’t slip!)
Planning a fun game or activity after cleaning is done is another motivator.
Enjoy having an easy weekly house cleaning schedule.
Show gratitude in how you act and what you say; set the example for your family. Work together. Have fun.
Another resource to help you create and maintain an easy weekly house cleaning schedule
Marla Cilley, aka Flylady, is a great resource for help in how to have an attitude of gratitude and how to clean your home one step at a time. She calls a weekly house cleaning a house blessing because we are blessing our homes and our family when we clean our home. Her book, Sink Reflections, gives more detail about this concept and how starting with one baby step to get and keep her home clean changed her life.