Perfection is an impossible quality and that’s true of cleaning as much as it is for everything else. And, yet cleaning routines of 1940s housewives show a contradiction to this concept.
Let’s break down that routine.
Week 1: Make Repairs
There are many ways to keep a house clean and well-maintained. While some people stick to cleaning only, ignoring the other “crumbs” in the house, other folks attack the mess of cracks in walls, clogged drains and damaged tiles.
The point is: No matter how much time and work you invest in meticulously polishing your house, ignoring repairs is making an exception to the spotless-house principle.
The strategy is to grab a notebook, go around the house and take a breath to consider what needs to be repaired.
As tempting as it can be, do not disregard things such as upholstery, chips in the paint, curtain pulls and doors that aren’t shutting properly.
Next, consider whether you can make the repairs yourself. If you make that advanced effort to do your own thing, plan a shopping list for all the supplies you need.
If the job is too much for you, forget the “cleaning rule” and hire professionals to make the fixes.
Week 2: What Needs Replacing?
When people reacquaint themselves with cleaning and bring a sense of order back into their homes, it feels fair to at least ask which household items need to be replaced to avoid any unpleasant surprise in the future.
Fortunately, not everything needs to be replaced in a house.
Again, the strategy is to take a look around your house and note down all that needs to be replaced.
Do you need to change your switch plates?
Do you need to change your doorknob?
Does the lighting need to be changed?
When you are finding it impossible for an item to be repaired or replaced, it’s easier to donate it or to throw it away and move on.
Once the list is ready, analyze whether these changes fit in your budget.
Week 3: Tackle the Cupboards
With so many items always being thrown in cupboards, it’s worth considering decluttering and cleaning them.
See, I know you’d do anything to keep all the items of the cupboard, but it’s important to set a rule – where at least, half of the cupboard items have to go in the basket of things you don’t really need.
And, when it comes to the cleaning part, it has to be cleaning from top to bottom and also from the inside out.
Week 4: Time for the Kitchen
Guys, the number one secret to a spotless house is through a clean kitchen.
Be honest with me: Is your kitchen full of little things sitting around – on the kitchen countertop, on the floor, in the sink?
When a kitchen is in a sort of limbo, you will never be able to separate that kitchen mess from your whole house.
Start your kitchen cleaning session by tackling all the dirty dishes and then working on countertops and tables, without forgetting the walls and floors.
Here’s another idea that I gleaned from my very own mind: While working on the kitchen, I’m sure you can probably find the time to put some new curtains, replace table cloths, shelf papers or worn-out linens.
Week 5: On to Clothes Closets
You know the concept – the less clothing mess you have, the less time you will spend cleaning and organizing the house.
We humans have a strange relationship with our clothes. We are always trying to get rid of the clutter in our clothing area, but end up buying more and more clothes.
Experience the first-hand clothes closet cleaning by decluttering and getting rid of broken hangers.
Week 6: Don’t Forget the Finishing Touches
If you’re cleaning for perfection and want to make your efforts more efficient, don’t forget the final cleaning touches, which might include polishing any woodwork, cleaning windows, laundering curtains and cleaning rugs.
Reading and grasping these 1940s cleaning principles is just half the battle. You are just making yourself start on a whole damn long battle. Now, the final results depend on you.