While we have already talked about how to live a simple life, there are certain aspects that are especially important and often overlooked, namely routines. I know that everyone views homesteading and simple living differently, but I want to elaborate on how routine personally helps me in simplifying my life. Using routines and picking up as I go reduces my stress and make me feel more prepared for the rest of my simple life. Here are some tips and ways to incorporate more routine in your life.
Routine, routine, routine. There is nothing that helps me get my life together more than settling into a routine. There is no denying that there are a lot of chores that need to get done daily around the house—making beds, washing the dishes, preparing meals, etc. This might sound obvious, but I recommend setting up a routine for all of the different parts of your day. I’ve got a routine for the morning, at work, and the evening. If you want or need an extra boost to your daily routines, add in a daily goal and try to get that done first. Try to make your daily goal something you don’t want to do, it’ll encourage you to get it done quickly so that you can start on the rest of your day!
A lot of the things that need attention in the home don’t need it everyday. So, I suggest creating some type of weekly rotation to keep up with it. Here is my example of how I section out the cleaning:
- Monday – Dust and vacuum
- Tuesday – Sweep and mop
- Wednesday – Bathroom deep clean (shower, toilet, change towels, wipe mirror)
- Thursday – Kitchen deep clean (fridge, microwave, counters, organize pantry)
- Friday – Laundry day/Fresh bedding. (I know some larger families need more than a day, so you might consider adding a load of laundry to your daily routine instead.)
- Saturday – Outdoor day! I do everything from yard work to cleaning my car on Saturdays.
- Sunday – Plan meals and grocery shop if needed.
Some chores need to be done on an as-you-go basis, like taking out trash. Others, I try to do monthly or bi-weekly, like cleaning my ceiling fans and baseboards. Once you get into a routine like this for cleaning your home, not only does it get clean quick but it is super simple to keep that way!
Pick up as you go
My mom (wise woman that she is) always told me growing up, “If you spend seven minutes on your room everyday, you would never have to spend an hour on it!!” and while I’m not sure how she calculated that seven minute time limit, she was, of course, exactly right. You can probably guess that this is something I have always struggled with. I have weeks where I get into a bad habit of not picking up after myself, and it makes my cleaning routines a LOT longer. But, the easiest way to keep your house clean is to not let it get messy.
For example, when you’re cooking, don’t just put your stir spoon on the counter, or throw your trash on the counter. Throw things away as you go, and rinse things as you go. When you change clothes, don’t leave your them on the floor—just put them in the hamper right away. I even have a laundry basket with dividers so I can sort my laundry as I go. It’s all about anticipating what you will have to do later on.
I definitely think an organized life and a simple life go hand-in-hand. When I have everything in order, it is so much easier for the rest to fall into place. Establishing a daily or even a weekly routine and picking up as you go can make a world of difference on your sanity! It can also help you save time; as you settle into your routines they tend to become shorter. This can open up extra time to actually organize the stuff in your home! Perhaps room by room…