How to do this [what seems like] daunting and monumental task? Use what you’ve got!
You already have established habits and routines - use them to your advantage and make adjustments; build upon what you’re ALREADY doing. Yes, gaining your time back from all the stuff that was sucking it away is very exciting, BUT - implementing brand new systems and routines will be harder to maintain in the long run. Ease into it.
Home systems are the roadmap and routines are the action that will help you maintain a simple, efficient and functional home. These tools are especially valuable for “messy” people [like me] and help establish order, repetitiveness, and most importantly, WILL to get something done and maintain your minimalish efforts.
✨A few ways to get started with home systems and routines✨
🏠 Establish a loose daily routine that you can stick with about 80% of the time
🏠 Habit “stack”; when you do one thing you typically do, ADD something else you also need to get done - this is also great for adjusting bad habits!
🏠 Use a digital calendar that you share with other members of your household so you are all on the same page
🏠 Begin to create systems around one of these four home tasks - Laundry, Dishes, Tidying, Cleaning
Did I help you [I hope]? Please let me know and share with a friend!
Minimal-ish living doesn't mean getting rid of all your “stuff” - it means making the “stuff” you value work best for you.
💙 It’s saving you time, money and SANITY.
💙 It’s getting rid of the noise and excess.
💙 It’s having a home that’s efficient and simple to manage.
💙 It’s eliminating what’s preventing you from accomplishing your goals.
💙 It’s for both physical AND mental “clutter”.
It’s family-friendly, foundation-setting and efficiency focused - perfect for ANYONE who wants to bring what really matters to them to the forefront, but it’s especially valuable for busy, growing families. Spend less time on the mundane and more time on making memories.
Interested in minimalish living? Head to my Instagram at @thetidytot for easy-to-implement home hacks, and tips that you can try TODAY to take back control at home and gain back your valuable time.
Recently, we’ve made changes in routines and systems, evolved with new life stages, and approached challenges with reframed mindsets in our home. Just like this quote, progress is impossible without change [including changing your mind as you learn new things and grow, too!].
If you’re feeling overwhelmed, frustrated and stressed in your home (been there, and still there sometimes!), here is an EASY, fast, 3-step approach to get the ball rolling towards positive changes in your home.
Spend 10 minutes NOW and make a quick VISUAL plan to tackle the worst pain-point in your home:
1️⃣ Establish the most frustrating aspect of your home (pick ONE room, ONE process, or ONE stress)
2️⃣ Write down your goal LARGE on a piece of paper - including a deadline! (‘I will figure out a better routine for school pickup by Friday’, ‘I will rearrange the living room to make it more functional by the weekend’, ‘I will declutter and organize our laundry room by the end of the month’)
3️⃣ Tape it up in an easy to see place close to where your goal is set to remind you
Seeing your goal all the time is to remind you that you already took the first step to making positive changes - NOT to make you feel bad you didn’t yet accomplish it (yet). Often the hardest part is just STARTING. You got this sh*t.
What’s a change you’re putting off that you just need to get started?
Minimalism is NOT a zero-mess solution. LIVING in your home doesn’t mean just sitting around quietly, twiddling your thumbs as no one uses or touches anything. I might wish my kids did this sometimes (HA), but let’s be real - it’s totally, absolutely unreasonable for any family!
The goals of organizing and systemizing your home is to make it EASY to tidy, not to make zero.messes.ever.
As you live more minimally, messes can feel overwhelming and like you’re “going backwards” or you’re “not doing it right” [P.S. - there’s no “right” way to be a minimalist!]. As I’ve mentioned before, I’m not a type-A, neat freak, super-organized person. A few years ago I would have FREAKED if someone called and told me they were coming over in 15 minutes - it could take me an hour or more to just clean up and tidy my kitchen. But now, I can take 10 of those 15 minutes, put a things back in their designated homes and even have a few remaining minutes to go look at myself in the mirror and make sure my shirt is spit-up free.
Embrace the “progress over perfection” mindset as you figure out what systems and routines are working for you and what isn’t - don’t feel like your systems can’t be fluid and change. This week, I’m resetting some of our current systems and daily routines, catching up on work and doing a few creative projects I’ve been putting off.
Your home is decluttered [at least for now]. You own 80% less “stuff” that was wasting your time, space and energy. You feel like you can do anything […you absolutely can]. Now what?
Home systems are the roadmap and routines are the action that will help you maintain a simple, efficient and functional home. Incorporating easy systems and routines that help you maintain your efforts are important parts of a minimalish journey.
As you work on cultivating a place that you and your family really love, value and connect with, just the thought of adjusting your established habits can be overwhelming. Start small, and alter what you’re ALREADY doing, instead of starting something new. Minimalism isn’t just for organized, neat-freaks - it’s for messy people (like me), too [and maybe most of all!].
🧺 Laundry, 🍽️ dishes, 🧹 tidying and 🧽 cleaning are four of the most important tasks to keep a home running smoothly and efficiently. Use these four tasks to establish regularity in your routine. Remember, minimalism is a journey, not a destination; progress over perfection, always!
Need help establishing home systems and routines? Shop printables at my Etsy shop. My Deep Clean Checklist is a 2022 best-seller, AND I just launched a 14 page Easter Planner!
Let's talk about maintaining the big stuff that you *really* don't want to break.
Most large appliances have filters - these filters catch the crap that could cause major problems if they got stuck further down the internals of your home - pipes, ducts, etc.
Most people know that you have to change water filters in the refrigerator (if it has a water system). Did you know, your dishwasher, washing machine, microwave and many other appliances also have filters?
I recently cleaned our washing machine filter after forgetting about it for at least 6 months. It was gross, but the worst part was the stinky water that came out. I knew when the clothes started smelling it was overdue. Same goes for the dishwasher filter that I clean monthly - if I forget and the dishes are getting gunky, I know I need to clean the filter.
Swapping and cleaning filters are an easy way to maintain the very important stuff that keeps your home running smoothly. Manufacturers make it easy - look up your model number's manual if you need guidance.
Did you know you need to clean or swap these filters? Many people don't!
Ever work in retail? I did quite a while ago! "Go Backs" were a big part of it - anything behind the register that needed to 'go back' to its place - returns, items customers didn't want, etc. I'm sure you know of this system, but have you ever used it at home?
I have a small basket in our living room I use for little things that get left around, BUT, when my kids' stuff gets excessive, they both get a bin, I fill it up and then we work together to put it away (I do most of it for my youngest!).
My favorite things to use as temporary bins are foldable crates - I have a few from both Green Made (InstaCrate) and Clever Made (Clever Crate) (bought at Sam's Club and Costco). See how they fold totally up in that second pic? I usually keep them in the car for groceries, shopping, etc.! They store easily without taking up much room, are stackable and have lids.
Do you have a "go back" bin you use at home? What about a foldable crate? (HIGHLY recommend!)
That nightly cleanup after dinner can be the most tedious, but in just a few minutes, you can get back on track (even if you’re a messy cook, like me!). Let me DISH out a little secret …
🍽️ Dishwasher loaded
🍽️ Items returned
🍽️ Surfaces wiped
🍽️ Hard floors (+ difficult stuff) cleaned
Lots of people love to work in sections in the kitchen, BUT, if stuff is just piling up, it can be helpful to just blitz through tasks; loading the dishwasher / doing most dishes (so you can see your counters), returning things in groups to the pantry and cabinets, wiping off crusty surfaces and then vacuuming up all the remaining/lingering crap, and washing that ONE annoying pot that won’t fit in the dishwasher (ugh).
What’s your preferred method for that last, often tedious, cleanup after dinner? Going to try my “DISH” method?
I walked in the laundry room earlier and was shocked at how clean it looked in here - those towels, rags and other random items had been sitting for a few days.
Even if it's just for 15 minutes, picking up some of the lingering items around your home once the kids are in bed can make a huge difference in your mood and mindset the next day - a quick reset. I don't do it every night, but inevitably, it makes the next day run more smoothly and feel less stressful when I do.
Remember, it's normal to have stuff out! You LIVE in your home! The goal is to make it easy to pick up and maintain so you can do so quickly and not waste excessive amounts of your precious time.
I've got a few tidying hacks coming up this week! What do you struggle with most when it comes to keeping your home tidy? Tell me!
⏰ THE TIMER TRICK ⏰
Works great for kids and adults alike…
On Instagram recently, I shared Jacqueline (@big.family.mom - check her out!)’s reel, suggesting (in a good way!) to be productive during nap/quiet time, instead of zoning out for yourself and then blaming others (kids!) that “I just can’t get anything done”.
Resting is great, but limit yourself so you don’t feel the frustration later - a timer is an awesome tool for this - I use it all.the.time!
Here are a few ways to use a timer when managing your home and family that will increase productivity (great for moms and older kids) and limit frustrations (great for moms and younger kids struggling with transitions):
⏰ Take a break
⏰ Limit screen time or other activity
⏰ Make a quick decision / avoid analysis paralysis
⏰ Challenge yourself to finish a task
⏰ Countdown to a new activity / transition
⏰ Establish a new routine or habit
Have you tried the timer trick?