The Method in the Madness

Type A folks like myself, tend to find rituals, methods, and habits to be soothing. We thrive on order. Type B folks tend to think that habits will force them into a box. I would like to make the argument that we all benefit from habits, even those of us who are more creative than others (I’m not on the super creative side by the way). Perhaps I’ll even convince you that adopting some habits would free you up to be even more creative.

Let’s take for example, the simple task of cleaning the bathroom. Some of us have been cleaning bathrooms longer than others. For example, I started learning to clean one when I was 7 years old. My husband didn’t clean a bathroom until he was in high school working at his first job. I have talked to other women who find cleaning the bathroom a dreaded and overwhelming task.

5-7 minutes. This is how long it takes to do a routine cleaning of my bathroom. I do it the EXACT same way every time. I’m certain that this routine is what makes my process so efficient.

Without a routine, you might start spraying the counter and sink with some all purpose cleaner. Then you would think, “Maybe I should really take a brush to the faucet.” A few minutes of scrubbing there, maybe you wipe down the counter. Moving to the toilet. I’ve been amazed at the sheer number of products people have just for cleaning the toilet. After you’ve attempted cleaning the toilet with five or six of the products you have, you’re feeling rather tired. Twenty minutes has gone by and your arm is all tired from using that pumice stick.

I’m fairly sure this is why people hate cleaning the bathroom and put it off as long as possible. Narrowing down the number of products you are using will help a lot. I have a bucket I keep my three bathroom cleaning products in. Comet with bleach (the kind you shake out of a can), Simple Green all purpose cleaner, and a cheap glass cleaner (I only use that if the mirror is looking rather speckled).

I gather some cleaning cloths and spray down the counter and sink. While that sits for a minute, I spray the entire toilet, top to bottom, pulling up every lid. I sprinkle the Comet into the toilet and use the toilet brush to give it a good scrub. I let that sit for a second while I wipe down the sink and counter. Flush the toilet, and wipe it down, moving from top to bottom. Give the floor a quick spray and wipe it down. Done.

One of my favorite cleaning “gurus” is the Flylady. One of my favorite things she says is, “Housework done incorrectly still blesses your family.” Don’t get hung up on cleaning “perfectly.” Just do it.

When you have to think through what method you will use to clean your bathroom every time, it will take a lot longer than if you have a set, proven method for getting it done.

Are you a Type A or Type B? How do you feel about cleaning your bathroom?



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