Everyone has routines. Learning that was powerful. What’s even more powerful is learning that changing your routines can change your life drastically without changing your life drastically. That sounds crazy but bear with me. By changing or adding just a few new habits, you can improve your home, your attitude and even your finances. This post highlights three simple habits to develop to take your life to that next level. Try them and delight in your new and better normal.
The Miracle Laundry Routine
First, with a family of six or less, I guarantee the routine of completing a full load of laundry daily makes a positive difference in your home. Don’t believe me? Try it for one month and let me know how it goes. To clarify, completing a load of laundry means washing, drying, folding and putting laundry away. Don’t leave it in a laundry basket for someone else to fold. Don’t leave it in a basket for someone else to put away. Do the entire load of laundry from start to finish in one day and do that for 30 days. I know how overwhelming that sounds, but I timed how long it takes. Sorting, switching, folding, hanging and putting away an entire load of clothes takes less than 15 minutes. If you don’t believe me, time the moments your hands actually touch the clothes. It’s amazing and eye opening.
The benefits of your new laundry routine
How will your view of laundry change because of this? The dirty clothing pile shrinks which boosts you emotionally. It’s likely is you’ll find out you have more clothes than you need. Sell the clothes to make money or donate them and deduct them on your taxes. Either way you help yourself financially while blessing others with your surplus. You reduce the clutter in your home and create a better living space by letting go of your excess, and you save money by buying less because you can find what you need when you need it.
The Magic of an Evening Routine
Second, if you want to take your life to the next level quickly, create an evening routine. Take 15 minutes to pick up, load the dishwasher, wash dishes, look at your calendar for the next day (get one if you don’t have one), pick out clothes for yourself and your children, pack lunches and make a list of things to do the next day. I know you think that doing all of that in fifteen minutes is impossible if you don’t do any of it now. Truthfully, your first few attempts may fail, but as you continue to practice, you’ll get better at it and within a few days, your evenings will be smoother, and more amazingly your mornings will get better too. My post The Magic of Fifteen Minutes details how to make this practice work for you.
I am a morning person, but I wasn’t always that way. I was born a night owl but ten years of getting up before 6am with high school kids helped me appreciate great morning progress. Now I love to leave my house with everything checked off the list and come home to a house that welcomes me. Creating an empowering evening routine made that happen. Again, try it for 30 days and let me know what happens. if you struggle with it, send me an email at email@example.com with your particular challenge, and I will do what I can to help.
Goodbye Clutter, Hello Peace
Third, get rid of anything in your home that doesn’t serve a purpose. If you love it, keep it. If it’s useful, it stays, but don’t keep anything you hate because of others’ feelings. I understand how difficult this. My mother gets rid of everything she no longer wants. Most of the time, she brings it to me, and I used to think I had to keep everything, but guess what? She got rid of it because it no longer fit in her life. She had no problem parting with it. Why should I? Decluttering what no longer serves you or your family makes space for a better life for everyone. When I applied this in my home, I could thank my mom for unwanted items and offer to give them to someone who would appreciate it. At first she balked, but I explained that it didn’t work for her or me, she began to understand.
The De-cluttering Process
Here’s a decluttering caveat. It’s a lifelong process. Things I loved years ago lost their appeal, so I gave them away. I gave away a valuable Disney piece to someone who loves it to this day. People told me to sell it’ but I preferred to give the gift of joy. If you need the money, by all means, sell what you no longer want, but for me it feels better to give things away. I understand sentiment. I have decorative plates that adorned my parents’ wall growing up. I’ve never displayed them in my home, but I still love them. The thing is, someday I’ll be gone, and I don’t want to leave my children with a mess of my sentimentality, so I regularly let go of things. One of the best questions you can ask yourself is, “If I had the perfect place to display this item, would I?” If the answer is no, let it go.
I once thought routines prevented fun, and schedules killed spontaneity. I was wrong. It took time to make peace with routines, but life got better when I did. Have you ever heard the phrase, mind your own business? In the US, it’s viewed as incredibly rude. Ironically, it’s precisely when we mind our business that we live our best lives. With routines and minding my own business I addressed piles instead of avoiding them. I took control of my home and moved forward. Creativity flowed and jealousy and anger left. I felt freer and had more fun than I had in years, just because of routines. For a girl who used to hate routines, it was a beautiful thing. Now, I’m so grateful I pay it forward by sharing with you. I can hardly wait for you to have that and more, so get to it and have as much fun as you can along the way. Sign up below for our weekly email. It’d full of encouragement to help you live your best life and let the rest go. As always, thanks for being you and have a great day.Click here for ways to support the Moving Toward Better mission.