Do you have unexpected free time on your schedule?
Perhaps the meeting of your local church, school, or sports team has just been canceled. Maybe your vacation plans have just changed and now you will stay at home instead of leaving for the next few weeks. Or maybe your local stores no longer have the necessary supplies, so it makes no sense to leave the house.
I think we all want to stay productive. Maybe an extra time at home could do us some good – if we use the time wisely.
I have seen some conversations lately about people who have been at home for long periods of time. Tasks like cooking, cleaning, and debugging seem to be high on the list of goals.
And because Untidy, the first app that has everything you need to own less will not be released until next week. I thought it might be helpful to make a list of debugging tasks you can do with your family today (or today) every day if you plan to be at home for so long).
14 achievable tasks that you can use to clean up your home
1. Accept the 12-12-12 challenge. The rules are simple: Find 12 items to throw away, 12 to donate, and 12 to return to your real home. That’s it. Repeat if necessary.
2. Fill an entire garbage bag. Get a garbage bag and fill it with things you can donate to Goodwill as soon as possible. Ann Marie houses a 40 bags in 40 days Challenge every year during Lent. You can still get in late and join the community of people who master this challenge every day.
3. Sort a stack of mail or paper. Junk mail piling up on your kitchen counter or on a stack of paper where it shouldn’t be? For this challenge, look for stacks of paper in places they don’t belong to (kitchen counters, dining tables, coffee tables) and tackle these stacks first. Work on getting through quickly and easily.
4. Set a physical limit for toys. I’m not a big fan of getting your kids to disappoint their stuff unless you set a good example. So don’t start with this challenge. But when the time is right, look at the toy collection in your house and create a helpful physical boundary for it (a shelf, a closet, a wall, etc.). Then help your child to curate the toy appropriately.
5. Clean frequently touched objects. It is always important to keep frequently used surfaces free of germs and infectious viruses and other things. Maybe now more than ever. Take time with an effective cleaner to clean countertops, taps, doorknobs, drawer pulls, light switches, remote controls and keyboards. You know all the things that should be kept clean to shorten your time at home.
6. 15 minute family challenge. If your whole family is fed up with the interiors, try persuading them into a fun game. Take 15 minutes as a family and see if you can find 100 things to remove from your home. Give them directions to disperse, only delete things that belong to them, and check that your total stack contains 100 things by the end.
7. 20-minute cleaning of the linen cupboard. You can probably dissolve all old towels and bed linen in your closet in 20 minutes. Set a timer and get it done. You meant it anyway, now is your chance.
8. Troubleshoot a room in 45 minutes. Take a look around the house and see if there is a living space that you can completely dissolve in 45 minutes. Maybe your living room, family room or dining room. Work hard to question your assumptions about what needs to be left in the room and remove as much as possible. When it’s done, take a break and enjoy the tranquility of a clear room. Maybe tackle a new room tomorrow?
9. Skip a TV show. I mean, really, you can only watch TV so much before you feel terrible anyway. So skip a show that you would normally watch (if you like doing sports, this is already done for you) and use the time to debug. That’s 30 minutes (or maybe even 60) of progress in creating a new living environment.
10. Clean your car / vehicle. Too often our vehicles are filled with unnecessary things: old CDs, sunglasses, happy meal toys, receipts, coins, empty water bottles, paper waste. Grab two bags: one for garbage and one for items to be relocated. Quickly fill them with anything in your car that doesn’t need to be there. You will be surprised how quickly you can free your vehicle from unnecessary clutter.
11.Clean up clothes that you are not wearing. Open your closet and drawers and notice how you normally wear the same things every day? Now is a good time to get rid of the others: clothes that don’t fit, clothes that are too old, clothes that are out of fashion, clothes with holes, clothes that just don’t complement your figure the way you want it to imagined …. Tidy them up and open your closet (and in the morning).
12. Search your pantry. It seems like now is a good time to get a good overview of what important things you already have at home and what you still need. So take an afternoon to sort your pantry this week – remove anything that is old, expired, or unlikely to get used to it.
13. Food storage containers. Your kitchen doesn’t have to be a punch line for Tupperware lids and the fact that they never fit the container you need. We declared Tupperware bankrupt many years ago, got rid of our entire stack and replaced it with Rubbermaid containers that are easy to stack. Do the same.
14. Delete your desktop. A clear desktop is a wonderful place to get your work done – whether it’s work or personal. So find some time and finally clarify yours. Process stacks of paper and remove unnecessary supplies to create a whole new work environment. Who knows? Given the free time you will have at home in the next few weeks, you may be surprised at the new opportunities you are paving the way for.
We live a busy life – maybe too busy from time to time. Spending a few extra hours or days at home with the family in the coming weeks could be just what we need as a company. If for any reason you are, I hope you find the list above helpful to make the most of your time and make your home as good as possible.
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