We’ve talked a lot about natural cleaning products here on the blog. Knowing how to make simple, natural products (or which “better” products to purchase from the store) is definitely important, but I also think it’s important to address the topic of how to practically clean. The kind of how-to that goes beyond making a bottle of all-purpose spray or shaking together a jar of toilet bowl cleaner. The kind of how-to that focuses on creating a practical routine so the cleaning actually gets done with the natural cleaning products.
Now, before we move on, it’s important to note one thing: I’m not talking about perfection or creating a magazine-worthy home. When I mention the words cleaning schedule, I simply mean a practical guide that’s intentionally created to help simplify the act of cleaning. That’s it; no perfection here!
With that said, let’s talk about what my cleaning schedule looks like. Then, we’ll discuss my tips for creating your own cleaning schedule. A cleaning schedule that’s intentionally created by you for your home.
My Natural Cleaning Schedule
My Natural Cleaning Schedule
I break down my cleaning schedule into three main categories: weekly, bi-monthly (twice a month), and rotation.
Weekly cleaning tasks include the areas of our home that are high-traffic areas and must be cleaned regularly. These top priority areas include: sweeping the hard floors downstairs, cleaning the kitchen counters and stove-top, cleaning the bathroom counters, laundry (read more about my 10-minute laundry routine), cleaning out the fridge before grocery shopping, and “stuff” management (putting stuff back where it belongs). I don’t have a dedicated day of the week for these tasks; rather, most of these tasks are performed throughout the week or even daily.
Bi-monthly, twice a month, cleaning tasks include high-traffic areas of our home that need a regular cleaning, but don’t need to be cleaned weekly. These areas include: vacuuming throughout our home (upstairs carpet and downstairs rugs), cleaning and disinfect in and around toilets, spraying and cleaning sinks and counters in bathrooms, cleaning mirrors in bathrooms, mopping hard floors throughout our home, wiping down desks/nightstands/dressers, washing bedding, wiping down exterior kitchen appliances. These tasks are generally accomplished on a Saturday morning.
Everything else that needs to be cleaned, but isn’t considered top priority, goes on my rotation list. There are three main areas on my rotation list: kitchen, bathrooms and bedrooms, living room/dining room (one large open floor space). The tasks on this rotation schedule include deep cleaning tasks. With this rotation schedule, one area per month goes through a deep cleaning. This is basically like a quarterly cleaning rotation.
You’ll see on my printable list how these areas are broken down by individual cleaning tasks. I personally find that it’s too much to include my rotation tasks during my bi-monthly cleaning schedule, which is usually done on Saturday morning, so I prefer to set aside one specific day a month for tackling the items on the current rotation. I jot down “rotation” on my calendar so I don’t forget which area of the house will be the focus during that particular month.
The cleaning products I use to clean our home are very simple to make. (I also purchase a couple of products from the store.) I don’t have a schedule for making cleaning products. I simply mix up the cleaning products as needed. You can read more about the cleaning products I’m currently using to clean my home in this post.
(Download my printable cleaning schedule)
How to Create Your Own Natural Cleaning Schedule
How to Create Your Own Natural Cleaning Schedule
My cleaning schedule was developed specifically for my home and my family’s cleaning needs. To help you develop your own cleaning schedule, I’ve included a blank printable to help you think about the cleaning tasks in your home according to the three categories: weekly, bi-monthly, rotation.
This is the most important tip for keeping a clean home and creating a practical cleaning schedule: DECLUTTER! Last year, I read the book, The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up. The book was a tremendous encouragement and help as I decluttered our home. Tidying up, or decluttering, was the single most important act I’ve ever done to help keep our home clean. Anything that wasn’t practical and didn’t “spark joy” was donated. Less stuff meant less stuff to clean. As Courtney Carver says, “If organizing your stuff worked, you’d be organized by now.” Getting rid of extra stuff meant I was no longer spending my days trying to organize and clean.
2. Prioritize Cleaning Tasks/Areas
First, think about the areas of your home that are high-traffic spots. Does your kitchen need regular cleaning? Think about the specific areas of your kitchen that need the most cleaning TLC. Mentally go through each area of your home, and jot down the top priority tasks on your weekly schedule. I believe it’s important to keep these tasks simple and practical so you don’t burnout.
Next, think about each area of your home and the tasks that are top priority, but don’t need to cleaned weekly. For me, these tasks include bathroom toilets, mirrors, and mopping the hard floors. Write down these tasks on your bi-monthly schedule.
Finally, think about the areas of your home that need to cleaned, but only need a quarterly wipe down/cleaning. These tasks may include baseboards, dusting fans, etc. Think about the areas of your home that may be lumped together for one big cleaning, too. Write down all the areas and tasks on your rotation schedule.
3. Schedule Time and Be Practical
Now that you have an intentional cleaning schedule, jot down on your calendar when you plan to accomplish each category, particularly the bi-monthly and rotation schedules. I personally don’t schedule the weekly tasks, but if you need a reminder, go ahead and jot down these tasks on your calendar, too. Maybe you plan to tackle the bi-monthly schedule on Saturdays, and the rotation schedule during one of these Saturdays. Be practical about your schedule and your time.
4. Encourage Family Participation
I prefer to clean without kids or Dustin, but if you’d like to encourage family participation, figure out which tasks you can assign to each family member. You could even jot down initials next to the tasks on your cleaning schedule. As my kids get older, I may start to do this.
Do you use a cleaning schedule, or do you plan to develop one? I’d love to hear what’s working for you.
I have a cleaning lady coming every once in a while but between her visits I still like to do some small tiding up here and there. I’ve personally found it always the most challenging to find the motivation to start my cleaning process. I agree our family should be better at decluttering our house as it definitely could make the cleaning process much easier to start. Thanks for the other tips as well.
Oh I wanted to add that by assigning tasks to each day of the week, I have found that I am able to finish my work each day. This gives me a feeling of resolution and achievement each day. I no longer feel like I have never-ending chores because I know when my housework is finished each day. I don’t have to worry about other things because they are another day’s work and I know if I stick to my schedule everything will be accomplished. It has been a great comfort to me and I no longer feel overwhelmed on days when my toddler is a destructive hurricane lol.
Lol, that’s awesome! Thank you so much for sharing your schedule!
I have found it useful to assign certain tasks to each day of the week as our great grandmothers did. I find it’s easier to keep track of what needs to be done each day. I do baking on Monday so I have snacks, treats and breakfasts for the week. Tuesday I dust, vacuum, mop and wash my husband’s work clothes. I do my grocery shopping on Wednesday since it is double add day at my favorite market. Thursday is laundering day and I clean the bathrooms in between loads. Friday I do ironing if any needs doing and I catch up on dishes if I have gotten behind and give the kitchen a good wipe down. Saturday I look over my budget and check stock items such as TP, hand soap etc. and do any odd jobs that need attention. Then there are daily tasks such as washing dishes, putting away toys, throwing out garbage, and neatening in general-this sometimes includes spot vacuuming and cleaning the couch (since I have a toddler crumbs and spills are a regular occurrence.)
I have had to move things around a bit to find what worked for our household, but unless I get sick this routine seems to keep our household functioning and clean and still gives me time each day to play with and teach my toddler.
Love it, Bethany! Thank you for sharing!
Love this! And by the way the chicken nuggets from awhile back are riDUNKulous. major score in our house!
Hey Tami, I’m so glad your family loves the chicken nuggets!