Being a mom of two wonderful girls, I can only attest to how difficult it can be to keep the house clean and stay sane as a family at the same time. Some evenings our dining room looks like a food bomb exploded in it. Some evenings every shelf in the house has been emptied out by my eager toddler, laundry has been dragged down from the drying racks, the beds have been turned into battle forts and toys are everywhere. I wish I was exaggerating. But I’m not. Those evenings, all I want is to reach for that comforting jar of nutella and browse through pinterest. After all, what’s the point of cleaning when it will only get messy again, right?
Yet the realisation that the house will not clean itself sinks in, and I get to work. And in the mornings I am always happy with that decision. Here is why:
1. Much of life is about our ability to grow ourselves back into wholeness after we have been shattered by our experiences. An essential ingredient to staying whole is always remembering that you are worthy. You are worthy of a clean, warm, beautiful place. You are worthy of a garden that will delight your spirit. You are worthy of art that will expand your awareness. You are worthy of comfort. Even if nobody else will provide these things for you, you will still provide them for yourself.
2. As the creator of the environment in which your family lives, you have the power to direct their subconscious towards things that will make them happy. Seeing the right colours and photos, enjoying the right smells, can be just what the doctor prescribed for unwinding from stress at the end of a long day.
3. An uncluttered beautiful house helps expand a child’s imagination. They want to play with the few things you leave out for them. These objects look inviting. When the home is cluttered there are likely to be more games of a destructive nature like tearing and throwing things.
4. A clean home is generally better organised than a messy home. It is empowering to know that any document that you may need (utility bill, tax receipt), is likely to be exactly where you left it a month/year ago.
5. A tidy house is likely to have fewer germs. This point becomes quite important when you live with kids, as they will drag the most unexpected things home.
Probably the easiest way to keep your house tidy is to be in the habit of doing it every day. Start with the things that will have the biggest visual impact, like making the beds and putting away the toys, and move on to things that will be less noticeable, like dusting and sweeping. A family home that is consistently well looked after will require less of a day to day time commitment than a home that is not.