How to Get Motivated to Clean

As a homemaker, I frequently find myself in a rut. The daily routine sometimes seems daunting despite the tasks being relatively simple. Laundry, dishes, tidying, dusting…it seems never ending. I know others feel the same way. Here are some guaranteed ways to beat the demons of “laziness” and “procrastination”.

Get dressed

While it may seem that you can accomplish the same tasks in lounge pants as you can in blue jeans, it’s not that simple. See, I love my sleep pants. They make me feel warm and cozy…which is not conducive to being productive. Get dressed. Ratty jeans and a t-shirt are fine, as long as you aren’t ready-for-bed comfortable.

Read blogs or watch videos about cleaning and organizing

Yes, I realize that this seems very counterproductive, but I’ve never wanted to clean more than after watching an episode of Hoarders or reading up on some new organizational and cleaning tricks.

Crank up the music

My mother listened to one CD for cleaning while I was growing up. To this day, Michael Bolton’s “The Hunger” album still jumpstarts me on my cleaning spree. I can’t listen to it without picturing her dusting, sweeping, mopping, or any other household task. My personal favorite is the Hair Bands station on Pandora. I LOVE 80s music! So find some upbeat music (think workout music) and crank it up! It’ll get you moving and make the chores get done so much faster.

Enlist help

For the love of all things holy, don’t try to tackle it all by yourself! There are various chore lists for children in different age groups. If they can use a smartphone or tablet, they can help you clean, whether it’s folding laundry, sweeping, or loading the dishwasher. Teach them until they can do it the right way. As far as husbands, I’ve found it’s best to give them one or two tasks on the dreaded “Honey-do” list. Giving Mr. Cozy Cottage just one task usually gets him out from being underfoot, gets him moving, and he does a thorough job of it. I assume the role of cleaning the house, but his jobs including vehicle maintenance, keeping the porch/workshop area tidy, and mowing the grass. On top of that, if they get something out, they should be putting it away. If they dirty a dish, they should be putting it in the sink. Everyone cleaning up after themselves is a guaranteed way to make your workload much lighter.

Start small

Mount Laundry is pretty daunting, and I only wash for two people. The dishes pile up. The dust covers everything almost as fast as I can wipe it off. It’s all pretty overwhelming. Start with a small and simple task. Make your bed. Put away that pile of books next to the couch (unless you’re in my house, out of shelf space, and that’s their home). Fold up those blankets you were snuggling in with your morning coffee. Getting one small task done often motivates you to clean more.

Or start big

While starting small may work for some people, other may find it too overwhelming, as they find other things that need done to add to the list. Find your most dreaded task (mine is dishes…I hate them) and do it. You’ll likely feel a lot better and less stressed out knowing the worst is behind you.

Make a list

This too can seem overwhelming, so break it down. I love my lists. Seeing all those checkmarks on completed daily tasks makes it easier to relax at night. It may not all be done, but I accomplished something instead of feeling like I wasted my day. I’ve started assigning tasks to certain days. I know what to expect and it breaks up the monotony.

Don’t declutter

Ah, those rabbit holes. Aren’t they fun to chase? You start putting away laundry and suddenly you’re struck with an urge to purge half of your clothes? Don’t give in to that urge! I mean it! Add it to the list on a day where you will have more time, and stick to what you set out to accomplish for that day. If you have time after everything is done, feel free to start on any decluttering task you want, but get the “must dos” out of the way first.

Think of why you’re doing it to begin with

The one thing that usually gets me is guilt. Mr. Cozy Cottage, as I’ve mention in previous articles, works 12-hour days so that I can stay home and take care of the house. I picture his face at the end of the day, when he comes home. I want our home to be a haven, a place of relaxation and tranquility, where he can relax before it’s time to go to bed and start all over. He’s working hard, which means I should be too.


I love learning what motivates people! Post in the comments below if you have anything that works for you and your family.


3 thoughts on “How to Get Motivated to Clean

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