Cleaning may not be your favorite thing to do, especially if you’re a person that is always busy or with a tight schedule. But, as you grow up, you realize that duties do come in life, whether you like that or not, and a grumpy face and some Mr. Bean-styled murmuring won’t shoo them away.
Instead of postponing the home chore you hate the most, it’s better to eat the frog and do that in the morning. You probably will croak during the process of cleaning, but once it’s done, you’ll be proud of yourself and you will finally breathe in some fresh air, both metaphorically and literally.
A tidy home does not just give you the feeling of coziness and relaxation, but also creates a healthier and safer place to live in. Getting rid of all the unnecessary stuff and cleaning every surface in your apartment or room means getting rid of any bacteria that could possibly affect your health in a bad way.
A clean home is also a wealthy home, especially when you’re renting your place. The trend of hosting strangers and travellers is still rolling high, and if you’ve been both the guest and the host, you’re probably aware of the importance of a clean home. No one wants to sleep in a mess, or to step on a floor covered in crumbs. If you’ve already hosted guests from around the world, you’ve probably cleaned your home many times. Now, did you get a new message from someone who’s interested in staying over at your place? Did that person catch you off guard?
If the person you’re hosting is about to arrive at any moment and you couldn’t find time to clean your home until now, here are few tips and tricks that you can use even in a last minute situation.
OH, WAIT! HOW TO HANDLE THE PANIC?!
Before I start with the 30 minutes cleaning challenge details, let me say a word or two about the panic that seizes you the moment you realize that you don’t have a lot of time to make your home look decent. It’s just like with any other type of deadline: all of a sudden, you realize that you’ve waited too long and now you’re in panic thinking you won’t make it. Before you drown in worry, block your negative thoughts and stop thinning your nerves because the only thing you’ll “get” is lost time. Stop panicking and start organizing yourself for the cleaning process.
THE GENERAL PLAN
Finally, let’s begin with ideas on the cleaning schedule. This is how you can clean your home thoroughly in half an hour without making a bigger mess during the cleaning process.
First things first, take all the cleaning supplies, detergents and towels to one place, so you can have them near you and avoid losing time on picking through them until you find the supply you need.
Don’t focus on the unimportant – have your goal on your mind all the time, so you don’t get distracted. Make a priority list of the rooms that you will clean. Once you have your general plan ready and set, you can start cleaning.
Dust where you must!
A clean surface on your rooms’ drawers and shelves will increase the effect of a neat space, so make sure you free these surfaces of all particles that burden its cleanness. Before dusting, remove all papers, garbage and unnecessary things that would steal your time. This will enable you to clean the dust faster. Don’t lose time on cleaning each figurine or souvenir on the shelves. Instead, dust only the wide surface and use the vacuum cleaner for the crowded parts. Make sure you don’t vacuum any of the little decorations!
Dust from the top towards the bottom, so you don’t bring any dust back.
It’s time to multi-task
Cleaning is probably one of the few situations in which multi-tasking is welcomed with pleasure. This way, you’ll save on time and you’ll organize the whole process with more focus. The multi-tasking cleaning chore should include the kitchen and the bathroom. First, apply a stove cleaning detergent on the whole surface and coat the burners. Let sit for a few minutes and in the meantime, start cleaning the bathroom. Spray the cleaning detergent on the toilet seat, the shower cabin or bathtub, the sink and the rest of the surfaces that should be cleaned.
Use a sponge to remove any stains from the different surfaces and wash off the detergent with a gush of warm water. Leave the door of the bathroom opened to avoid mould creation and bad smell.
Go back to the kitchen and start with the stove. Use the coarse side of the sponge or a scrub brush and remove food residue and stains from the burners and the whole surface. Wash off with warm water and then dry it with a clean towel. If there are any dirty dishes, put them in the dishwasher before starting with the stove.
It’s very important to have clean and stain-free drinking glasses, plates and cutlery. That, and a clean eating table should be your priority in the kitchen.
It’s time to break free!
Remember the scene where Freddy Mercury is vacuuming the house with ease? If a King can do it, you can do it too! Vacuuming can be tiring, but when there’s music that alleviates the feeling of boredom, this home chore transforms into a liberating fitness activity. Turn up the volume, play your favorite songs and motivate yourself, because this is the last large cleaning chore from the 30-minute cleaning challenge. Start from the corridor of your home and vacuum clean the whole place, focusing on the dormitory and the rooms where your guests will spend most of their time.
When you finish with the bedroom, change bed sheets, pillow cases and blankets or duvet covers.
The beauty of the details
In order to complete the challenge successfully, pay attention to the details that make the home feel cozy, neat and welcoming. Open the windows and let some fresh air come in. You can use an air freshener with a pleasant aroma (nothing strong-smelling). Lavender, lime or some herb-based aroma would do just fine.
You can place a vase with flowers from the local flower market or shop to create a welcoming atmosphere.
How to split the 30 minutes for each cleaning chore?
Time is precious, I know! Believe it or not, half an hour is enough to do all these activities and I’ll prove that with the following time management plan. It’s all about focusing on priorities and being practical.
As you can see in the previous paragraphs, the challenge counts three large tasks. Don’t split the time into equal segments, because some of the tasks are more complex. You’ll surely need more time to clean the bathroom and the kitchen than you’ll need for dusting or setting the bed.
So, here’s how to split your precious thirty minutes:
- 7 minutes for dusting
- 12 minutes for the multi-task part – bathroom and kitchen cleaning
- 8 minutes for vacuuming the home and changing bed sheets
- 3 minutes for the details
Looking at these numbers, you probably think that I’ve gone cuckoo, but believe me, it’s possible. It’s like a good and well-planned workout in the gym: you have a goal, you know how to focus and you know that time is precious.
Let me remind you that most important of all is to forget about panicking. There won’t be any kind of inspection; you just want to be a nice and polite host who cares about the guests and you want to leave a good impression.
When already talking about the importance of using time wisely, here are some extra tips on how to spare yourself the trouble next time an unexpected guest makes a last minute reservation.
Try to keep your home as neat as possible. Build a daily routine of washing the dishes and throwing out the garbage regularly. Don’t leave your clothes on the sofa or the chair. Dust once a week. It’s much easier to clean one layer of dust than something that has already begun to make history on the shelves!
Using the vacuum cleaner once a week will also make your home look well ordered.
You know that the guest bedroom should always be a priority, so always have clean and ironed bedding. Never use this room as a place where you store unnecessary things! Once a day, open the windows to let some fresh air come in.
Take this challenge as an opportunity to prove yourself that you can do things the good way even when you’re short on time.
I hope that these tips will be of help and that you will enjoy the process. In the end, the satisfied look and the positive feedback from your guests is what will make this sacrifice worth your time and efforts.
Written by guest blogger Anita Edwards