‘Tis the season for a lot of things – especially messiness. For this Type A gal, the messiness drives me a bit crazy. What to do? Embrace it! After all, life itself is a bit messy at times.
Disclaimer: This is not a free pass to let your dishes pile up disgustingly high or bathe only once a week.
I have a tough time resting if even one thing is out of place, but I must let some of it go. Some tidying up is good, but I tend to take it to a new level of organization. Guidelines are a must.
Take 15 minutes per day to just pick up. Put things away, or at the very least, in piles. Immediately toss trash. Then, when you have free time after the holidays, tackle one area of the house/apartment at a time. I typically start with my home office, since lots of clutter gravitates there.
Floors need to be clutter free but during busy times, mopping them regularly can be optional. When vacuuming, hit the highlights and come back to the nooks and crannies later. Dusting is unnecessary. If you must, swiffer the most visible areas or just blow the dust off. The one non-negotiable area to clean is the bathroom. Just clean it. Use Clorox wipes (may be purchased at my favorite store, Target!) and the strong toilet cleaner and call it good. Clean, but no sweat required.
Next, the on-the-go busyness: We could double the day to 48 hours, and I still wouldn’t have enough time to do everything. And I don’t even have kids! Remind yourself that being busy is a good thing. I’d rather be busy than bored. Of course, less busy is desirable. During this time of the year, being less busy is often not optional. Accept that you are only one person, prioritize, and hang on tight.
Be smart with your time. Use a checklist. Knock out a few errands on your way out to shop. Select your holiday recipes during commercials while watching The Office (yes, watching this show IS a priority). Ditto with wrapping. And the recipes and wrapping need not be Martha Stewart quality. It’s also resourceful to let the stores wrap for you, as well as cook for you. Have fun, but don’t stress yourself out with being perfect.
It’s OK if you are gone all of the time and the house is a semi-disaster area. Just block out a little bit of time once a week to clean the main areas. It’s better to have a messy house and lots of friends than to have a sparkling clean house and no friends. The two don’t have to be mutually exclusive, but if a choice must be made, choose the fun and socializing over the need to clean.
Finally, enjoy the moment. Stop thinking so much about tomorrow and the next day and your to do list. Listen to the people around you, drink a glass of wine, and RELAX. As Lexi, my former roomie for 3+ years, used to remind me, “What cannot be done today can usually be done tomorrow.”