I get asked all the time, “Melissa, after all of these years cleaning stuff, how do you still hate cleaning?” Well, the truth is, it just hasn’t grown on me! I can, however, say that I know how to clean quickly and efficiently—so at least I don’t have to waste any time when I do have to clean! With that in mind, I wanted to share some expert cleaning tips to help you speed up your cleaning (and cut some corners) so you can spend less time cleaning and more time doing the things you love!
Tie Cleaning Chores to Other Tasks
I had a professor who always told us, “Guys, you cannot do two things well at once.” and while I agree with him when it comes to serious work, when it comes to cleaning I think he’s dead wrong. I like to find ways to sneak in little bits of cleaning when I’m doing other things so I can get more done in less time. For example, while I’m boiling hot water to make tea, I like to unload and/or load my dishwasher. If I throw a pan on the stove to heat up, I can clean up any of the mess I’ve made during meal prep. Always think about how you can double up on a task and get two things done at once!
If you have a dishwasher at home, there IS a better way to load it! What this means is loading it properly to make unloading more efficient. The key is grouping all like items together—all of your forks in one part of the cutlery basket, all of your cups on the same rack. This way, when you’re unloading, it’s so much more efficient to take things out one pile at a time and put them away. It’s little things like this that start to add up in aggregate and really save you time. Oh, and if you’re interested, we made a video all about how to load a dishwasher properly.
Garbage Bag Storage
We recently got a new garbage can here at the CMS HQ—exciting right? Not! But, it was a big deal for Chad and I since our last one was a major PITA! We decided with this garbage can that we were going to leave a bunch of extra bags at the bottom to make emptying and changing out the garbage a little easier. Wow, was this a good idea! It not only speeds things up, but Chad is that guy who throws out the garbage but never replaces the bag—well, now he has no more excuses!
Do Less Laundry
To save yourself from having to do extra laundry, and to prolong the life of your clothing, I have a little tip for you! If all you need to do is freshen up your clothes between washes, spritz your garment down with some D.I.Y. fabric refresher and throw it in the dryer on the Fluff/Air Only cycle. You can run this for about 10 or 15 minutes, and if you have wool dryer balls and some essential oils, toss them in too! Breathe some new life into your clothing by freshening them up, and… you’ve saved yourself a wash!
Practice Makes Perfect
Having a system or routine—doing the same thing time after time after time—will eventually start saving you time. It’s a simple truth that doing the same thing over and over again makes you more efficient at it. If you have no plan of attack, and you’re trying something new each time it’s just going to take you longer to do it. So, figure out a system or routine when you’re cleaning and repeat it each time, making slight changes when required for efficiency, and you’ll see that you’ll become a lot quicker at this task over time.
Don’t Clean All The Stuff
Simple right? Remind yourself that you don’t have to clean all the things all the time! Some people feel compelled to clean everything every time they clean. That’s overwhelming, takes a lot of time, and can often be overkill. Instead, really think about those M.I.A.’s (most important areas) and focus on them. If you can hone in on the actual jobs that need to be done, you’ll find that cleaning is a lot less daunting and you don’t need to spend as much time doing it. Check out this video for some examples of things you may be cleaning too often.
The Dishwasher: Not Just For Dishes!
If you have a dishwasher, you need to learn how to put that thing to work! Your dishwasher can clean a lot more than just dishes! It can clean things like baseball caps (with plastic bills), plastic toys, shoes, tools, switch plates, vent covers… the list goes on! Suffice it to say, you can clean a lot of stuff in the dishwasher—as long as it can tolerate a little bit of heat and it’s safe to go in there, why not?