The Kitchen: Kickstart Your Cleaning

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Welcome to your kitchen cleaning video. Feel free to play this and listen to my voice while you clean, listen and pause as you work through your tasks, or watch this video through and then clean. Whatever suits you best!

The kitchen is going to require a certain amount of daily attention if you want to keep it in good shape. It gets used daily, so it’s got to be cared for daily. It can be hard to prepare food in a messy kitchen or eat and feel at peace if you are surrounded by a mess. So, if I want to cook, I’ve got to clean. The good news is, it doesn’t need a ton of effort once you’ve got the baseline work done, and that’s what we are going to focus on. I am going to show you how you can have that gorgeous, clean kitchen!

For me, the kitchen can just get piled up with utensils, pots, pans, plates, cups and containers. If I don’t stay on top of the mess, especially after cooking up a meal with multiple dishes, oh my goodness. It’s a frightening scene. Greasy and saucy splatters can land in unexpected places and if they are left to dry, well, my kitchen starts to look like a piece of living abstract art. My counters, sink and floor are the most important areas for me in the kitchen.

Head over to your kitchen now. Have a look around and think about your MIAs or most important areas in here. What makes you frustrate, upset, annoyed or grossed out when it’s a mess? This is the first step of the Maker Method and if you’ve got the book, I’ve got a little quiz you can fill out on page 7 to keep track and delve deep. Take a minute to do this – it’s important to know where you need to focus. Great. Now that you’ve done it, you can start to craft your cleaning strategy and think about the products, tools, techniques you need as well as the areas you are going to spend the bulk of your time on.

Now, close your eyes just for a moment, and imagine what your space would look like ideally, if it were cleaned to your liking. If you can see this in your mind’s eye, you’re well on your way because you’re setting your intention. Having a clear picture of what your space looks like – only as clean as you want it to be – is half the work. What does the countertop and sink look like? What do your appliances look like? How about the seating area in the kitchen, how’s that supposed to look? What about the drawers, cupboards and backsplash, how do you want them to look once they’ve been cleaned? In your mind’s eye, look up, around the ceiling and corners, light fixture, and down at the floor. Sweep the kitchen with your eyes to get a clear picture of what you expect it to look like when done. Remember, it doesn’t need to be perfect. Great. You’ve set your goal, and that’s the level of clean you are going to work toward.

Now we’ll move onto the second step of the Maker Method, PTTs, or products, tools and techniques. Think about your appliances, pots and pans, the kind of sink you have, the material your countertop is made out of. These are all areas for your consideration as you piece together your kit for cleaning this space. Remember, you can do a lot with simple basics like vinegar, baking soda and dish soap. I’ve got so many fantastic recipes listed out which work wonders in the kitchen. If you have the book, refer to page 15 for the products, and page 28 for the tools. There are some crucial techniques to understand for the kitchen cleaning routine as well, and if you do have the book, please pay special attention to page 94 for one of my all-time favorites which has made a significant difference for the quality of my cleans. You can open it up to page 85 to have a look at the chapter and get a good sense of the flow and techniques required to clean this space. Once you get it, you get it. It’s simple, doable and you will start to master this as you go, I promise.

To get yourself in the mood, consider playing music or a podcast and lighting a candle or diffusing essential oils. Open a window if the weather permits. This always helps me get moving. Make sure you’re dressed comfortably, have used the washroom, have a drink prepared and have everything distracting turned off. Right before you begin, look at your kitchen as it is, know that you’re going to turn it around and make it sparkle. Carve out about 30 to 45 minutes, depending on how much work you plan to do. Be jazzed, this is going to be great. It may be hard for you to get to this place of excitement about cleaning, but somewhere, deep down, you know you want that gorgeous, show-room clean kitchen. And you’re going to get it. You can do this – you’ve got the skills, you’ve got the stuff and you’ve got the time. Know that once it’s done, you’re going to be proud, happy and relaxed. Get excited about that. You’re going to nail this!

Head over to your starting point and begin your cleaning. Check out page 89 of the book to learn about the power or pretreating and how to use it to turbo charge your kitchen cleaning. Pay special attention to those hidden areas that collect grime, like cupboard handles, appliances, backsplashes, drains in the sink, etc. Any kitchen décor you need to focus on? As you clean, keep an eye out for any small appliances, kitchen implements, or tableware that you don’t use anymore. Is there something you can part ways with? If so, bonus! Also take note of any special projects you need to tackle in this space, like cleaning a light fixture, overhead exhaust fan, or the inside of a large or small appliance. Appliance cleaning details are covered off starting on page 104. Do you want to think about going through your pantry and cupboards any time soon? If you haven’t done this in a while, think about dedicating some time to this project, it’s worth it. Use the right tool for the right job, and lever up the intensity if required. Pay attention to the kitchen table and chairs; have they been wiped clean? Make sure the floor is clean; no crumbs, no splotches and no streaks.

Remember as you’re working to take a moment and remind yourself how proud you are for dedicating this time to cleaning your kitchen. Cooking, working or being in a clean kitchen is such a delight. It’s a simple pleasure and a cornerstone for a clean home. When your kitchen is clean, it feels like everything is clean! Once you clean this up, you can easily maintain it day by day. You’re going to feel amazing in this space by the time you’re done.

As you wind down cleaning the kitchen, clear away the items you’ve used to clean, replace any furniture that has been moved and put the final finishes on your space. Alright! Now, stand back and observe what you’ve done. Smile, ear-to-ear, pat yourself on the back, let out a little spirited woo-hoo, or do a quick dance. Whatever you need to do, you deserve to congratulate yourself and ride the feel-good vibes of your efforts. Your kitchen looks noticeably better now, and all because of you!

The kitchen must be kept clean on a daily basis or else it’ll pile up with dirty dishes and food containers pretty fast. Spend time establishing a daily kitchen cleaning routine, perhaps you build it in to your after-dinner routine. You can see how this is done on page 259 and see how it can work for you. The kitchen requires many one-off jobs done at a lower frequency, so scheduling them in will be an important thing to do. Take some time to do this; set it on autopilot and don’t think about it again! Look at your MIAs and also at your scheduling charge on page 274 and see what you want to include in your monthly, quarterly and annual cleaning schedule. Scheduling and routines is the third step of the Maker Method – what gets scheduled gets done.

You’ve done it! I am so proud of you that you got through the kitchen and made it look beautiful. Great work, I can’t wait to take you into the den!

Please share your journey with me by using #KickstartCMS and tagging me on Instagram and Twitter using @CleanMySpace and @MelissaMaker, share your photos on Facebook, or send me an email to info {@} cleanmyspace.com . I’d love to know how this is helping you!

Melissa Maker is an entrepreneur, cleaning expert, founder of Toronto’s most popular boutique cleaning service, and star of the Clean My Space channel on YouTube (but she still hates to clean!). Every week, Melissa delivers new videos dishing expert advice on cleaning products, tools, DIY substitutes, and practical, timesaving solutions to everyday problems. Melissa has appeared on the Today Show, and has been featured in InStyle, Real Simple, and Better Homes and Gardens.

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