I have a couple tips...some of them you guys might love and some of them you might hate :LOL
First, go back to the beginning. If you've fallen off the wagon, feeling burned out and overwhelmed, chances are, you've been doing too much. First, get dressed to your shoes (this DOES work, I swear it), and then shine your sink. And that's it, just shine the sink. Find out what zone we're working in, and spend 15 minutes in it, doing something; a 27 fling boogie, a hot spot fire drill, SOMETHING. But, just 15 minutes.
Go back to the beginning and start small; BABY STEPS.
Don't beat yourself up for not getting your house clean immediately. It didn't get messy overnight, it sure isn't going to get clean overnight.
Take care of YOURSELF. Shine your sink, hit the current zone for 15 minutes, and reward yourself that night by taking a bubble bath, or bringing the kids to the park, or something else that recharges your spirit.
Be proud of what you've DONE; don't worry about what's left to do!
No, you don't have to follow the flylady program to the letter. You should certainly adapt it to fit you and your family. But there are certain key points that cannot and should not be looked over:
The getting dressed in the morning, really. Don't hang out in PJ's all day. Dressed to the shoes? I was amazed at how well this worked for me. But it might not work for everyone, I don't know.
Shining your sink. It sounds like a little stupid exercise. But if you haven't done it yet, DO IT! The amount of pride you'll feel from looking at your sparkling sink is just amazing. It's the weirdest thing in the world. And, other people in your home may start to show pride in its appearance as well! My DH doesn't dump his leftover coffee in the kitchen sink anymore, because he doesn't want to "mess it up" :LOL
Not whining. This is a biggie. You can't make excuses and get you house clean at the same time. There is a challenge here. Everyone has something that they can use as an excuse. I made excuses last week, and this week. "I'm seven months pregnant. I'm tired. I have a cold." I made plenty of excuses, and my house suffered for it. The truth is, yes, I'm pregnant, i'm tired and I have a cold. But that didn't stop me from throwing the ball in the yard for the dog for a half an hour. It didn't stop me from shopping with my SIL. If I could do those things, why couldn't I run my dishwasher? Excuses don't do anything but get in the way of your clean home. Don't make them.
Let go of your perfectionism. Remember an earlier post by me, where I said that I coudln't do the dishes because the dishwasher didn't have enough room for all the dishes in the sink? Okay, I was being a perfectionist. Because it wasn't going to get done exactly the way I wanted it done (i.e. everything going in the dishwasher at once and getting clean together), it wasn't getting done at all. I overwhelmed myself with my perfectionism and let it roadblock me from doing what needed to be done.
Perfectionism works in another way against us, too. Let's say you shine you sink, and it looks great. But now you look at the counter next to your sink and it looks so not great. What's the point of having this gorgeous sink if it's surrounded by blech? So you scrub the counter. And what's the point of cleaning the sink and the counter if the range is speckled with pasta sauce splatters? And, wow, how did I miss that hand print on the fridge. Before you know it, you're in full frenzy cleaning mode. Your kitchen gets spic and span, you get tired and burnt out and when you child comes in and dumps a glass of milk into the sink, you don't even have the energy or inclination to clean the cup and rinse and dry the sink. Sure your kitchen's clean NOW, but it's not going to stay that way, because you've burnt yourself out. Perfectionism took over. Either that, or, you find yourself, after three hours of scrubbing and organizing, on the floor of your kitchen, surrounded by the contents of one of your cabinets, when you husband comes home from work and wonders if you've made any dinner. You shove the stuff haphazardly back into the cabinet and make a quick dinner, leave the dishes in the sink, and then collapse on teh couch. I've been there, too.
And lastly, Stop being a martyr. Thoughts like, "I'm the ONLY one who does ANYTHING around here" and "I am so unappreciated! I clean and cook and no one cares" and "No matter how many times I clean things, they just get messed up again!" don't do a thing to bless your family. In fact, I'd say they probably do whatever the opposite of "blessing" your family is. It's hard to stop these thoughts. Believe me, I know. But I am so much happier since I've been able to get a handle on them. I don't think of it as a negative thing anymore that I'm cleaning or doing laundry. I think of it as helping my family by doing these things. I don't resent them. I show my husband I love him in hundreds of little ways; like making surethere's toothpaste, washing his socks, making him dinner.
It's also been easier for me to see the hundreds of little ways he shows me he loves me, since I've stopped playing that negative record in my head.
And my house is usually pretty darn clean.
What's cool is that all this stuff is on the flylady website. There's nothing that I just typed here that you can't go read there. When I'm feeling uninspired, I go check out Kelly's mission and if that doesn't work, I go find some testamonials. If that doesn't work, I think about blessing my family. That usually does it.
Good luck guys!