How do you do a clean?

Discussion in 'General Advice' started by a tiny mushroom, Feb 27, 2015.

  1. Aniseed

    Aniseed Well-Known Member

    Well, I'm a fairly clean person, but I still get overwhelmed by huge tasks, so I'll try to help a bit if I can.

    Large tasks can seem overwhelming. If I think to myself "I have to clean the kitchen." it's a really daunting task. But if I think of it in parts as I go like "I have to wash the dishes." "I have to clean the counters." "I have to sweep the floor." "I have to mop the floor." and so on it puts it in the perspective of a bunch of smaller tasks and is less daunting. It also means if I run out of energy at cleaning the counters, I can make a mental or physical note that tomorrow I should sweep and mop.

    Ask for help on large projects if you can. Keeping things clean is easier to do solo than cleaning up a giant mess is. Obviously some people feel really guilty about asking for help, in which case you don't have to push yourself too much on this. Just if you have a close friend or family member who'd be willing to sit in your room with you and help you sort your stuff, it will get done faster.

    If you have a lot to sort through and find yourself with a lot of stuff you feel bad to throw away, consider giving it away instead if it's stuff in decent condition. Throwing things into the trash feels a lot worse than giving things to a friend or taking a box over to Goodwill does.

    Take breaks and reward yourself. Set reasonable goals, either by task or area or just time. Say you'll clean for 30 minutes, and then once you do so, take a break for a few. Eat a snack that you enjoy. Tell yourself that once you clean x amount of your room, you'll treat yourself to a movie or a bath or anything you'd like. Things like that.

    Prioritize unsanitary stuff in your cleaning. Your dirty clothes can sit on the floor for while and not really do much to hurt your health, but if you have old food containers, a clogged toilet, a cat box overflowing with poop, and so on, those tasks are the ones that need to be taken care of first. Take care of them one at a time, and make sure to take breaks if you are dealing with anything seriously dirty or smelly. Properly ventilate the area you are cleaning. Wear a dust mask if necessary. Rest if you feel ill.

    Do stuff as you do other stuff. I'll often empty the dishwasher or wash a few pots and pans while waiting for water to boil or something to finish up in the oven since I'm in the kitchen anyway. When it comes to cleaning your bedroom, put something on in the background that won't distract you too much. I'd recommend just something like music or an audio book, since a video or TV will potentially grab your attention and leave you sitting there and not cleaning. Unless it's the opposite for you in which case, do what works best for you.

    Clean stuff up as it gets messy. This will be easier to do once you've tackled your current major cleaning needs, but it's a good way to keep things clean once you've done that. For example, if I cook something and just pile stuff up as it gets dirty and then go eat, it will likely sit there. If I toss the spoons in the dishwasher as they get dirty, if I wash the pan I browned the meat in when everything is boiling together in the pot, if I wash the last of the dishes while waiting for my food to cool, I have less stuff piled in the sink to sort through and clean.

    This relies a lot on the other people in your life, but talk to the people you live with. Explain that you have x y z going on and it keeps you from being as clean as they might like you to be. Work with them to figure out a way that you can at least get some things done, whether it's a very clear cut with everything broken down chores list or what have you. As some anecdata here I live with someone who is very very messy. I also live with another person who has multiple sclerosis and often can't clean up his messes due to his health. I don't mind having to clean up after my housemate with multiple sclerosis, because I understand that he is limited by his health and is very often in pain, and he also does do some small things on days when he feels okay. The other housemate however has never approached any of us saying anything like 'I have trouble seeing mess.' or 'I feel depressed and it makes me not care about these things' and if she did, I'd feel a lot better about cleaning up after her sometimes, and I would be happy to work with her and put up a list of things she should try to do when she can if she needed that. But as it stands, she gets incredibly angry when you ask her to wash her dishes or make sure her laundry is out of the washing machine, so it's 'easier' for my brain to jump to feeling annoyed and even hurt that she doesn't seem to care that I am always cleaning up her messes for her if I want to cook anything for myself or do my own laundry. Communication and working together can only help both your relationship(s) with the people you live with and the cleanliness of your shared spaces, but it does take all parties being open to that communication.
    • Like x 2
  2. Lissiel

    Lissiel Dreaming dead

    I get that 'clean as you go' is good advice for a lot of people but god lord does it make me rage. I can't tell you how many times ive been down the hole with depression and been told 'well if you just clean as you go you wont have this problem' when actually stopping every five seconds to switch tasks eats 2-5 times as many spoons as just damn well waiting till i run out of plates and doing the whole thing in a chunk. Like choosing to do things that way instead of 'just stay up on it!' Was a moral failing instead of a legit strategy for getting through the day. Fuck that, so seriously.

    Edit: Sorry, thats not really directed at you its just. Ugh.
    Last edited: Jun 1, 2015
    • Like x 2
  3. Kaylotta

    Kaylotta Writer Trash

    @Lissiel I have this problem too, when I'm way down in the dumps. It would take more spoons to decide to bring a plate to the kitchen on my way by. In those cases I usually just leave it - it's not worth burning myself out over. When my executive dysfunction isn't down the shitter, though, I do try to do a little bit at a time to stave off the need to crazy-clean. But I hear you: as long as your cleaning style works for you, it's good. No one needs to get on anyone else's back about it.

    @Aniseed: those are some great tips! I use a lot of those in my day-to-day too, and it's nice to see it all laid out like that. :D
  4. Aniseed

    Aniseed Well-Known Member

    In contrast, doing things as I do other things is pretty much the only way I personally can manage to get anything done day to day. If I don't clean the dishes as I go, I'll either end up leaving them there and be gnawed at with guilt for hours (while also not taking care of them) or doing them all in a big chunk in a rush after my food is done and feel anxious about how it's getting cold. It's interesting how stuff can vary for people though.

    Tbh I get a weird thrill out of multitasking if I have the energy to get it going. Going back and forth between tasks gets a lot of nervous energy out of me, but that could just be a Leveraging Your Brain Weird thing that works for me and won't work for other people.
    • Like x 1
  5. Acey

    Acey hand extended, waiting for a shake

    Bumping thread to say that I have a plan for cleaning my room!

    General Stuff

    1. Make bed daily. Wash bedding as needed.

    2. Get up at 5 AM every morning.

    3. Take a half-hour break at least every two hours.

    4. Everything after Day 7 can be delayed if necessary.

    5. Don’t overwork yourself. If it takes longer than a week, that’s fine.

    6. Be sure to eat and stay hydrated.

    Day 1 (Monday)

    1. Make bed.

    2. Section off Section 1 (door to desk, down to end of closet).

    3. Move plushies to bed.

    4. Pick up all trash and recycling; take it out.

    5. Put all clothes in hamper.

    6. Start a load of laundry.

    7. Remove junk from desk.

    8. Put books, DVDs, etc. on desk for now.

    9. Stack shoes under the desk.

    10. Put finished laundry in Section 2.

    Day 2 (Tuesday)

    1. Make bed.

    2. Section off Section 2 (desk to wall).

    3. Move plushies to bed.

    4. Pick up all trash and recycling; take it out.

    5. Put books, DVDs, etc. on desk for now.

    6. Put all dirty clothes in hamper.

    7. Start a load of laundry.

    8. Organize and fold already-clean clothes. Decide what to put in storage, what to donate, and what to keep here.

    9. Organize and fold laundry.

    Day 3 (Wednesday)

    1. Make bed.

    2. Section off Section 3 (desk to closet, closet to wall).

    3. Move plushies to bed.

    4. Pick up all trash and recycling; take it out.

    5. Put books, DVDs, etc. on nightstand or bookshelf.

    6. Put all dirty clothes in hamper.

    7. Start a load of laundry.

    8. Begin organizing books, energy permitting.

    9. Organize and fold laundry; place in Section 2.

    Day 4 (Thursday)

    1. Make bed.

    2. Section off Section 4 (remaining area of room).

    3. Move plushies to bed.

    4. Pick up all trash and recycling; take it out.

    5. Put books, DVDs, etc. on bookshelf.

    6. Put all dirty clothes in hamper.

    7. Start a load of laundry.

    8. Begin organizing books and windowsill, energy permitting.

    9. Organize and fold laundry; place in Section 2.

    Day 5 (Friday)

    1. Make bed.

    2. If books and windowsill were not organized on Day 3 and/or Day 4, organize them.

    3. Dust.

    4. Vacuum.

    5. Spray for bugs, including in the closet..

    6. Air out room before re-entering.

    7. Febreze/air freshener.

    Day 6 (Saturday)

    1. Make bed.

    2. Remove bins from closet.

    3. Begin organizing contents of bins. Decide what to keep, what to donate, what to put in storage, and what to sell at the swap meet.

    4. Pick up closet floor.

    5. Hang up shoe rack; move shoes to rack.

    6. Move bins outside.

    Day 7 (Sunday)

    1. Make bed.

    2. Finish closet organization, assuming it was not finished on Day 6.

    3. Dust closet.

    4. Vacuum closet.

    5. Hang up any shirts and jackets that don’t quite fit in Section 2.

    Day 8 (Monday)

    1. Make bed.

    2. Clean off current desk; get it removed from room.

    3. Move new desk to room.

    4. Organize new desk.

    Day 9 (Tuesday)

    1. Make bed.

    2. Get table, TV, Xbox, etc. from storage locker (along with cosplay stuff, of course).

    3. Move table to room.

    4. Move sewing machine to room.

    5. Move TV and Xbox to room and hook them up, if possible.

    Day 10 (Wednesday)

    1. Make bed.

    2. Get any miscellaneous cool room shit from storage locker.

    3. Move miscellaneous cool room shit to room.

    I have a few things in mind to help me focus (energetic music, sage incense, stuff like that), and I'm not gonna put too much pressure on myself--I realize that getting all of this done within this short timeframe might not be realistic. It's just a rough goal.

    If anyone has any suggestions on thing that might be improved, do let me know!
    • Like x 3
  6. missoyashirou

    missoyashirou Someone please give me a tiny dog to play with

    If it's alright to offer up a switch, maybe moving the table into the same day as moving in the desk from the storage locker and moving in all the cool shit at the same time as you move in the TV, XBox and sewing machine? It would cut out one more driving trip to the storage facility and back, which might help save some spoons at the the tail end?

    Other than that, it looks like a good plan to me, and I wish you the best with accomplishing it!
  7. Acey

    Acey hand extended, waiting for a shake

    That makes sense, yeah! I dunno that I'll bring the cool stuff in at the same time as the TV and such, since it'll be a lot, but that's definitely a good plan. :) The desk is actually just upstairs, though, so that's a nonissue...
    • Like x 1
  8. Ink

    Ink Well-Known Member

    That sounds great.

    My only advice: be gentle with yourself over the closet bins. :)
  9. Kaylotta

    Kaylotta Writer Trash

    My general rule when culling stuff: if I hesitate on what to do with an item immediately, I leave it and come back. If I am still hedging on the second go round, I keep it until the next culling.

    Plan looks solid! You can do it!! :D
  10. rats

    rats 21 Bright Forge Shatters The Void

    further advice on your schedule: if you are not a morning person please for the love of god don't force yourself to wake up at 5AM
    • Like x 1
  11. Emma

    Emma Your resident resident

    Totally agree with @rats. Getting up at 5am is ridiculously hard when you're not a morning person.
  12. Acey

    Acey hand extended, waiting for a shake

    The only reason I picked 5 AM is that it's my usual wake-up time nowadays. Of course, I forgot to set an alarm last night and so I just got up half an hour ago today...
  13. a tiny mushroom

    a tiny mushroom the tiniest

    *ressurects this thread*
    *laughs that I started it in February and I've only just started seriously sorting out my room*

    We're renovating my house which means I need to clean my room so it can be packed up before the walls stop existing which is STRESSFUL AS HELL but I've been chipping away at it by telling myself it's okay to just tackle one portion of my room at a time, which is what other people in this thread have said. Also playing music while I do it helps. I now have a kinda clear floor! And I threw out the broken shoes I was still hoarding bc I get stupidly attached to inanimate objects! Yaaaay!
    • Like x 2
  14. Acey

    Acey hand extended, waiting for a shake

    I've made MAJOR progress.
    Here's a Before pic. As you can see, it was unlivably bad.

    I started by clearing a space for my new dresser and desk.

    Then I jury-rigged a place to hang some of my clothes.

    Upon receiving my new (well, hand-me-down, but still) desk, I moved some of my photos and figurines over there, as well as my laptop and some other stuff.

    I took to making my bed daily.

    Here's my new dresser. That blue bin is full of trash; the bag beside it is recyclables. I also put together a place to store my shoes.

    Here's my nightstand. Area around it is a work in progress, obviously. :P

    And another desk shot.

    I plan to move my nightstand and bed a foot or two to the side once that area is cleaned up, so I'll have space to move my desk away from the corner a bit. :P

    I'm so proud of how far I've come!
    • Like x 6
  15. cleverThylacine

    cleverThylacine cuddles for the weird and the fierce

    I''m proud of you too @Acey!
    • Like x 1
  16. Acey

    Acey hand extended, waiting for a shake

    I hope you'll be able to come down here once March rolls 'round, since I'm hoping to finally have that sleepover...and with my room clean (I plan on implementing a daily regimen to keep it that way) you'll be able to see that, too!
    • Like x 1
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