A few weeks ago I wrote a post about 5 little tricks you can try to get a tidier house, if you’re not a naturally clean and tidy person.
If you liked that post, then hopefully you’ll enjoy this one too.
Here are 5 more things you can try to trick your way to a tidier house.
1. Create a cleaning playlist
There are two main reasons having a cleaning playlist can help you on your way to a tidier house.
Firstly, if you pick upbeat, cheery music it’ll help to get you moving and motivate you to start cleaning. In fact, the first song on your playlist could quite quickly become your trigger to start tidying up, which is something I wrote about in the previous post on this topic.
The other great thing about having a set list of tracks that you listen to when you tidy is that it gives you a natural time limit.
You only need to clean for the duration of your playlist. And that in itself can be enough to help get you going.
2. Bribe yourself
Ok, maybe bribe isn’t quite the right word.
But make a deal with yourself that if you get the washing all put away you can sit and have a cup of tea and a biscuit afterwards.
Or if you get the lounge all picked up, dusted and hoovered then you can watch 2 episodes of the show you’re binge-watching later on.
The rewards don’t have to be much at all, but giving yourself something to look forward to once the tidying is done can help get you through it and get the job done.
3. Work with the way your life works
Stop fighting your habits and work around them instead.
So if you always plonk your keys down on the table when you get home, instead of hanging them on the key hook, then make a point of actually designating the table as your ‘key spot’. Get a nice little bowl or dish that can live on the table where your keys, small change, hand sanitizer and so on can all go when you get home at the end of the day.
Spend a bit of time thinking about the things that always get left out in your home, and then work out if there are better homes for these things that would work better for you and your habits than the homes you’ve currently designated for them that hardly ever actually get used.
4. Light a lemon-scented candle
This is an interesting one based on a study carried out in 2005.
A group of Dutch researchers gave people really crumbly cookies to eat, either in an unscented room or a room that smelt lemony. They found that the people in the citrus-smelling room stopped eating the cookie several times to clean up the crumbs they’d made, while the people in the unscented room, on average, only did this once.
What’s really interesting is that only one person actually mentioned noticing the lemon smell in the room, the others seemed unaware of it, and none of the people in the study said that they were concerned about tidying while they were eating the cookies.
So it seems like the decision they made to clean up the crumbs was completely subconscious.
Behavioural scientist Paul Dolan explains this by saying, “the brain looks to make associations to assist in decision-making. So the smell of cleanliness primes the desire to be clean.”
Most of us do associate a fresh lemon scent with cleanliness, so lighting a lemon-scented candle or using a lemon wax melt to fill your home with that scent may well prompt you to start cleaning.
5. Create a sense of urgency
If all else fails and you still can’t get motivated to tidy and clean, then find something to create a sense of urgency for yourself.
Normally this would be something like inviting someone over to your house who you wouldn’t want to see the state it’s in at the moment. With all the lockdowns and restrictions this year though, this might not be an option.
So see what else you can do to create that motivation to tidy up. Having a zoom meeting might be enough, if you don’t want your cluttered lounge to be in the background of the call.
What do you find motivates you to get up and tidy up, when you really don’t want to?
Which of these tips do you think will help you the most in keeping on top of the tidying when you’re not a naturally tidy person?