Where I Confess….I Suck at Cleaning.



Product of my new improved cleaning skills.  It looked like this for five minutes. 

I am a cleaning dork. A friend was over helping me organize my house, Lord knows, I need all the help I can get. She is a clutter clearing guru, plus a drill sergeant and I totally need that. I am pretty sure I have ADHD (not joking). I have never been diagnosed officially, but I Googled it.  I have the attention span of a fly, particularly when I am doing something that I hate, it takes a small breeze to distract me to more interesting things.

While my friend and I  were working together,  she must have noticed how lost I was, because she said something to me that changed everything and I will get to that in a second.

Let’s talk about why I am lost. Aside from my self diagnosed ADHD, I seem to have also missed the get organized, keep your house clean gene. This could also be to do to a good amount of laziness and procrastination.

This would be my typical cleaning attempt: 

  • Start with doing morning dishes.
  • Then check my email midway through
  • Remember I haven’t brushed my teeth yet……that’s why my mouth tastes like yack.
  • Run upstairs, while brushing my teeth, wipe out a sink with other hand.
  • Notice Oliver’s toys are piling over and sort them out, leave a pile to go down to the basement at the top of the stairs. I will trip over this repeatedly for the next two weeks.
  • Suddenly get inspired for a Facebook post and go downstairs to find my laptop,
  • Notice dishwasher is still half unloaded and start over…..

My house is typically a mess. Not from a lack of effort, because I am cleaning…all the time,  I just never really getting anything finished. This gives me a massive headache. Plus add a three-year old to the hamster wheel of the redundancy of housework and it can all feel utterly hopeless.

The only time I really shine is the three hours before company arrives. I then have an out-of-body experience, and let me tell you, that other girl who shows up can really move her ass.

So what did my wise friend say to me?

“Danny, work each room in a circle till it is clean. Start in one spot, work your way around till it is finished.”

She so gets me. 

I know this seems ridiculously simple, I feel kind of dumb for sharing it,  but it has revolutionized my cleaning.  If I apply this to tidying my house, eighty percent of the time I actually get the room cleaned, but I really have to focus (ADHD). All the cleaning books I have read, the money spent on magazines that promise me a cleaner home,  none of them ever said this. Not. Even. Once. It’s always about mystery stains and disgusting grime, that I hope I never have in my house. Doing this get’s the room to being super tidy, then the cleaning part is a breeze.  I still need to get more personally organized, but I will take this for now.

Please don’t tell me I am alone in this. I would love your input in the comments below! 

How do you clean a room?

Do you get easily sidetracked……SQUIRREL!

Do you keep a schedule? Or BETTER have an app?




8 Responses to Where I Confess….I Suck at Cleaning.

  • Yvonne Ayres says:

    Dani .. we all excel in one thing or another. I’m an organizer. [it’s so easy when it’s someone else’s house. You are a great Mom and a beautiful writer. I can’t put my words down to save my soul. I think great things [ so I think] but just can’t get there. I love what you do.

  • idelette says:

    I love that I feel so comfortable walking into your home. I don’t have to be anything but myself. You are a wonderful friend who allows me to see her “not perfect yet” house … which is a HOME.

    I think that makes the difference. It’s not just a clean, beautiful house. It’s a loving, inviting home. Plus: Your creativity floors me.

    I definitely have a hard time cleaning. I like clean, but my clean never feels as clean as my mom’s clean, for example. I do think some people have that cleaning anointing … :) That’s just not me. That’s why dear Carolyn comes and does her magic in our home. I’d much rather be writing or reading or preparing dinner or working on my computer or have life group girls over. :)

  • Rachel says:

    I learned from an Internet Safety seminar that every time you answer the “ding” of a text message, or the “whizzzz” of an email, it takes 5 minutes to refocus and get back on track to what you were doing before then. That’s my problem…and then I have no idea what I was doing before that “ding” happened! Those distractions are a huge distraction to accomplishing anything in my house!!

    Implementing the “10 minute tidy” is also very effective. Give yourself 10 minutes to actually run around and put your house away, and its amazing how much you can accomplish in such little focused time. (not that I do that very often either…but it DOES work!)

    • I just read somewhere about the ten minute tidy and completely forgot about it! You are right and if the boys are home we all do it together.

      I really do need to put my phone away when I am working, but then I worry the school could be calling. We have no landline. I guess this is where self discipline come in. I wish I had more of that.



  • Heather says:

    I’ve been attempting to do FlyLady. She’s got some exercises that are different – like the 27 item fling – that may work for you. She’s also got a calendar you can follow.

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