Housekeeping . . . who cares anyway?

posted in: CYJ Blog, Housekeeping, Lifeskills

(Best of Celebrating Your Journey – June 3, 2016)

To all my readers: With 2019, the 14th year of my Celebrating Your Journey blog articles, “From the Heart” byline, I will be offering the “Best of the Best” articles you found helpful through the years. Many thanks to everyone who have given input and followed along w/ each month’s lifeskill—Relationships/Core Values, Time Mgt, Career/Money Mgt, Recordkeeping, Possessions, Housekeeping, Wellness, Meals, Childcare, Recreation/ Entertainment, Reflection, and Celebration. For my new readers, may these lifeskill articles offer you encouragement, insight, and commitment to seek, reach, and achieve your life dreams and goals in synergy.

I love my messy house! I know where everything is in each pile. And who cares about those dust clods in the corners? No one really ever sees them anyway. Is that what you usually say when it comes to housekeeping? Well, I know I still do on several occasions. In fact, I am saying it right now as I write this article. Even when I pass by a dresser, I quickly wipe off the dusty surface with my blouse sleeve. Yes, I confess. The vacuum has also been out for at least four days now. As I pass it, I tell it, “I’ll be with you shortly, I promise!”

You are probably thinking, “This can’t be so for Sharon. She’s just too perfect a lifeskills coach and does everything with precision and perfection!” Well my friend, now you know the truth. I am like everyone else with my more sanguine personality who would rather have fun with a friend, work on one my stories or writings. Anything but housekeeping! Yet, over the years, I have improved from what it used to be many years go. My hubby, John, will attest to that! Also, I found I really couldn’t coach someone else very well who has a “messy” personality without walking my talk. And when I coached one of those “cleanie” personalities, it would have been really hard to even relate to their long to-do list they so expertly checked off as they finished one job after the other in appropriate order!

Do you know there are actually different behavioral bents for us “Messies?” According to Sandra Felton, founder of Messies Anonymous, there are nine types of messies. Perfectionist Messies have very high standards for individual jobs. Yet, they are indecisive about approach to tasks. So, they decide not to decide. Rebellious Messies know what they need to do but refuse to do it. Sometimes they are determined to be independent from the way “Mom” told them to do it way back when.
Relaxed Messies rationalize that the world outside is hostile and home is their place to relax. So things are let go. The home then actually becomes hostile with clutter…actually making others and sometimes themselves feel unwelcome in their own home. Sentimental Messies believes every scrap brought home is precious and valuable. You never know when you will need it. So, the piles grow and every drawer has loads of undeveloped film of precious memories.

Spartan Messies cut out or lock up the things they need because it will just mean more to care for. They usually don‘t get rid of things just exclude them from care. Out of mind; out of sight! Clean Messies feel as long as things are clean they can be left out…like clean clothes in a basket, not folded; dishes washed but left out on counter. But they are clean! Safe Messies leave bed unmade so it can air out better. The floors are not waxed because they might slip and fall. Dishes not dried by hand because air drying is more sanitary; so they stay out. One cannot be too careful.

Then there are the Old-Fashioned Messies just love to do things the old-fashioned way…like scrubbing the floor on their hands and knees. Idealistic Messies have their heads in the clouds…great thoughts and ideas but results either don‘t appear or are disastrous. They are more tuned to loftier things and seldom notice the relationship between their messy home and their fading dreams.

I used to be a combination of Sentimental and Clean Messies. Fortunately for my family I am now a recovering Messie bordering on a full-fledged Cleanie. And I have no plans to make any longer lists of to-dos for me to regret not doing.

What have you discovered about yourself? Include any thoughts or desired changes in routine; and share them with family or a close friend. If you want to make any changes, start small to be easier on yourself. Commit to one desired change in the week ahead and ask someone to keep you accountable to this change. You just may find your “who cares anyway” attitude change to “I care and now enjoy my home even more.” In the next article, Five Starter Housekeeping Tips will be covered.