Two things that are imperative to get your family to join in on home tasks – little changes can make a big impact with efficiency and help you stay on top of chores and upkeep.
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Full Episode Transcription (not edited):
There are many reasons. The day-to-day has you stressed out, but being responsible for everything at home and not having any help from the people that live in your house is not helping you to reduce the overwhelm. Little changes in the day-to-day stuff can make a big impact with efficiency and it will really help you stay on top of chores and the general upkeep that we have to do to keep our homes clean and orderly and functioning how we want. Using these simple strategies that we’re gonna talk about today, the simple changes, if you formulate a plan with them, it will help to make sure everyone in your house is contributing to, Hey, friends, quick tips that make a big impact in your daily life are my favorite ways to implement systems around the house. I’ve been sharing easy strategies and my go-to organizing products for Tip Tuesday on the intentional edit Instagram feed for a few years now.
I’m excited to bring it to the podcast with sure episodes, answering your questions every Tuesday. If you want me to answer your questions, go to the podcast page on intentional edit.com and submit your questions there. Let’s get started on this Tip Tuesday episode of the Intentional Edit Podcast, the things that need to be done on a daily, weekly, monthly basis in our home, whatever timeframe that we’re talking about, we have a lot that has to be done and there’s things that have to be done every day. There’s things that can be done less frequently, but to manage a home and to keep it as clean and orderly and picked up as we would like takes the effort from every single person that lives in that home. Everyone contributes to making the mess, so everyone needs to contribute to the upkeep and picking things up. I’m gonna answer a listener question today. It’s a quick one, but let’s hear what she has to say and what she’s struggling with.
What’s the best way to get your kids to help you clean without making it sound like a chore or getting frustrated with them for not helping?
Thank you for submitting that question. This is a common question. Before I get into the answer the way that I want to answer and some solutions that I’d like to offer, I want to remind you guys how easy it is to submit your questions. On Tuesday episodes, I like to answer listener questions, and my favorite way to do that is when you leave me a message just like this one, all you have to do is go to intentional edit.com and a little button that says record now will pop up. You click on that button and it will ask you for your name, and then you leave a message just like you leave a voicemail. If you were leaving a message for anyone else, all you have to do is talk. So say what your struggle is, say what you want me to fix, the problem, the solution that you’re looking for, what the problem is, share that, and all you have to do is talk.
You just leave the message. It is super, super easy. You don’t have to type anything out, you don’t have to send an email. You just click on that record now button on intentional edit.com. I will plug in the question that you leave or the problem that you are looking for a solution for. I will answer that on a future tip Tuesday episode. It will go in the queue to be answered in the future, and you will get the information that you are looking for. So click on the link in the podcast description where it says, ask Lauren a question or just go to intentional edit.com. Click on that record now button. It will pop up on your browser when you go to intentional edit.com, and you can quickly and easily and simply leave me a message so that I can answer your questions on a future tip Tuesday episode of the Intentional Edit Podcast.
Now, let’s get back to the question of the day. We do a lot in our homes, and if you think about the way that they function, most of the rooms are really multipurpose. We have a lot going on and a lot of the things that we do make a mess, whether it is crumbs on the kitchen floor, dirty dishes in the sink, toys out and about, or just general things that we use throughout the day, taking them back and not being in the habit of putting them away. Every person that lives in the home, your guests, your visitors, your full-time people, anyone that is coming and going is contributing to the mess. They’re potentially making a mess. That’s life. If we are living and having fun, we want to use the space that we have in our home. We want to use the supplies that we have gathered, the toys we want your kids to play.
We want to interact. We want to have fun and enjoy life and make memories and really truly enjoy our homes. And what happens when we don’t have systems in place and we don’t have good routines or we don’t have the proper organization set up is things get out of hand. Things can get messy and it feels dirty, and it feels like a place that you are stressed out in. You are overwhelmed by, especially when the majority of the household tasks usually fall. Statistics show they usually fall on the mother. It is a lot. What can we do to combat some of this? Well, there’s two things that are imperative to get assistance from those people that live in your home. Routines and consistency are the key to having success with these things. Now, I know in the question today you said, how can we get them to help without these things feeling like chores and that all is in your approach and your mindset and the way that you tackle this.
Sometimes a family meeting or even a brief sharing session or a conversation needs to happen to kick this off. If your kids are older, you can be brutally honest with them, present them with the things that you need help with and ask them where they are willing to help divide up these tasks and assign someone to the ones that no one signed up for if that’s needed. Sometimes you have a child that doesn’t mind taking the trash out two or three times a week. It’s something that is not a big deal for them. Sometimes you have a kid that actually likes to load the dishes or unload the dishwasher. All of these things will seem like a burden and can be met with hesitation and annoyance, and your kids aren’t going to like them, especially if we’re talking about tweens, teenagers, those type of ages, if we’re talking about teens, tweens, those years, if you haven’t had them help before, they’re going to put up a fight generally for anything that you ask them to do because this is something new and it seems like it is something that they don’t want to do that will take up their time.
That’s going to be annoying. So they will be resistant to this. Your approach, your tone of voice, your attitude, all of that matters, and they will see that a lot of the things that you’re asking them to do are very insignificant to the amount of minutes that they have in a day. Taking out the trash might be a two minute job. Loading the dishwasher or unloading the dishwasher is only a couple of minutes. So we will tackle this difference depending on the age of the kids, but basic things that need to happen in the home are usually quick. If you want to instill something like a five minute nightly pickup or an evening reset, that can meet a huge help to get your home back to the status quo, and your kids can be on board with this. If you have older kids that are very busy with after school activities or evening activities, they might not be home every night, so this might not happen every night, but lay the expectations out there.
Make sure that they are realistic for both you and for the people that you’re trying to get involved and don’t expect perfection because these things haven’t been happening in the past, and you’re gonna have to give them time to make sure that they can become a new routine. And once you get past the 30 day point of this new routine going into effect, then it generally becomes a habit, and that’s what you want. You want things to become a habit because that’s when they are mindless. They don’t take any effort, like any mental effort. So what can you do? Let’s talk about clearing and removing the clutter from a space. That would be a first step that will really help you because that will also eliminate the mental clutter and it allows you to feel less overwhelmed without much effort. If you get a space decluttered and start organizing it and remove the excess from a space, that’s a great time.
When to talk about your, with your kids and your family about the expectations of keeping it picked up. Putting together a family meeting or some type of a sharing session can be a great way to explain that and what the new expectations are, and if you are going to have some type of a reward system or some type of program, or if you’re implementing something that you’re going to keep track of. Younger kids often need a chore chart, a sticker chart or something that reminds them of what needs to be done and it shows the progress, and then it also shows that they’re working towards a goal. That goal can be something like a family ice cream outing or an ice cream night at home, or a super simple motivator. Of course, getting the younger kids on board early makes it so that these intentional tasks turn into habits, and I just told you why we want them to be habits because then they don’t take any mental energy or any mental effort.
It’s just something you do before long, you’re just doing these things. They’ve become a habit and then they continue when the kids get older. If the kids are older, the buy-in might be a little bit more difficult, but the older kids can also be responsible for more, and you can get a lot done in a very short amount of time. When you put your mind to something and you know that you only have these two tasks or these three tasks to do on certain days of the week, split them up. Make it fair. Don’t let the burden fall on uh, one particular child, just like it shouldn’t fall on just you as the mom. If you are the one who is washing the clothes and doing the laundry, it might be a age appropriate for one of your kids to put their clothes away, but a younger child might not be capable of doing that.
So you really wanna customize these things to your family, the ages and the stages, and the seasons of life that you are currently in. Listen to episode 65 and 76. Again, that’s episode 65 and episode 76. In those episodes, I really talk about a lot more about chores and what is appropriate for your kids and give you different ideas to have success with that. But the two things that you really want to have is coming up with a routine that makes it so that the simple chores and the the picking up of things, the little tasks, those just become part of the routine, which in turn becomes part of the habit. And anything that you’re trying to change requires consistency. Consistency with getting it done, consistency with any type of reward or praise or positivity that comes from that. You have to have the routines and you have to have the consistency, and those two things will lead to a home that can stay picked up and orderly and at that baseline that you feel good about with the help of your family and the people that live within your home.
That wraps up another quick episode of a Tip Tuesday. If you want to be featured on Intentional edits, tip Tuesday, go to intentional edit.com. Click on the podcast page in the menu bar and then scroll all the way down to the bottom. You’ll find a button that says Record Tap on that and record your question or share what is currently overwhelming to you. What is going on that you need help with. I want to know, I need to know your struggle so I can share actionable solutions to help you create simplicity in your home. If you are having this issue, I know other people are having it too, and we wanna help as many people as possible. Head over to the podcast page of intentional edit.com and record your question for me there.
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Lauren is the founder of Intentional Edit, a home organization and lifestyle company focused on consciously editing to create efficient and organized spaces. Lauren believes that a functional home that looks and feels good has a positive influence on all aspects of life. Creating systems that allow for the home to function more efficiently, therefore, eliminating most of the clutter and chaos is her priority. While trends come and go organization is always in style!
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