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How do you get in the habit of picking up after yourself, and how do you get other people to make the effort too?<br><br>
I can clean. My mom definitely taught me how to clean and how to keep things clean. There's a bright shiny house under here somewhere ... I just have to excavate to get to it.<br><br>
As an example, this is how things go in our kitchen. I wake up and start the day with a clean kitchen. But between making lunch, leaving dishes in the sink, and DH getting snacks/drinks/etc, by dinnertime I have to clear space to cook. DH is supposed to run the dishwasher after dinner but usually doesn't. I understand, because he can hardly get to the dishwasher what with DD's toys scattered all over the floor, the dishes piled up, laundry spilling out of the laundry room into the kitchen, and so on.<br><br>
Then I wake up the next morning and I can't find a coffee cup, let alone get to the coffee maker to make coffee. And while I'm trying to do it anyway, DD gets into the still-dirty laundry, and the whole floor is covered within minutes. Then I just don't go in the kitchen the rest of the day because it's depressing and I can't pick it up ... DD screams and cries for me to hold her, but if I try to clean while holding/wearing her, she grabs scissors and other stuff I'm trying to put away. Or if she's on my back she's grabbing at knives in the dish drainer every time I walk past it while pulling my hair. <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="/img/vbsmilies/smilies/eyesroll.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="roll"><br><br>
What am I supposed to do? I don't need help *cleaning*. I can mop and vacuum and scrub with the best of them, and I'm quick at it too. What bogs me down is the picking up STUFF. How do I get DH to pick up after himself? And how do I get into the habit of picking up after myself with my little monkey hanging on me into everything I do?<br><br>
(Since it's the first thing that comes to my mind too, I'll just say, no I can't clean while DD is sleeping. She won't sleep without me, but that's another issue. Her sleep time is unavailable for cleaning or anything else right now.)
 

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I would start by decluttering so you have less stuff to pick up.
 

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We have a lot of baskets and footstools with storage inside. So, I can just toss.
 

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I have the opposite problem. I'm a neat-freak, and cluttered horizontal surfaces make me <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="/img/vbsmilies/smilies/dizzy.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="Dizzy">: so I am constantly putting things away. I absolutely detest cleaning, though, and my kitchen floor shows it. <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="/img/vbsmilies/smilies/bag.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="Bag">:<br><br>
Picking up is an "as-you-go-along" never-ending task. It has taken me a long time to accept this fact, but acceptance is key. <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/lol.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="lol"> Once you get into the habit of doing it, though, it gets a lot easier. When I go into the kitchen for any reason, I take the few dishes that are in the sink and put them in the dishwasher and clear off and wipe the counters. It takes so much less time and effort to do it this way than to wait until the sink is full and the counters are piled up. The same goes for toys. My 2yo and I pick up all the toys several times a day. I keep a toy box in the living room, and we walk around picking up toys whenever they start taking over the floor. He thinks it's fun.<br><br>
As for getting cooperation from other family members, I just ask. Over and over and over again. <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="/img/vbsmilies/smilies/eyesroll.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="roll"> My 5yo comes home from school and throws her backpack on the floor and takes off her shoes and leaves them in the middle of the living room every single day. So every single day I tell her to put her backpack and shoes away where there go. Yes, I'm tired of saying the same thing all the time (and I frequently complain about it), but I have faith that one day I won't have to say it. I hope so, anyway. <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/lol.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="lol"><br><br>
I do think a lot of this is just my personality, though. Looking at a mess makes me literally feel bad. I can't ignore it. I frequently start cleaning the kitchen before everyone is finished eating dinner. I just can't sit at the table knowing there is a big mess that needs to be cleaned up. Maybe there's something wrong with me? <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/lol.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="lol"><br><br>
I just wish I had someone to mop my floors because that is the one job I could really live without. <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/winky.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="Wink"><br><br><br>
ETA: Writing all of that motivated me to mop the kitchen. Thanks! <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/orngbiggrin.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="orange big grin"> (I'm also kind of hoping doing some physical work will put me in labor - my due date was yesterday.)
 

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<img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/lurk.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="lurk">:
 
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