How I use Google Tasks to keep my house habitable

I will preface this post by telling you that, honestly, I am not the most organized person I know. If you’re looking for a binder print-out or a bullet journal concept, this is not that post. I envy those people, but I know myself well enough to know that mine will always be a slightly dirty floor, a too-full trash, a cluttered entryway. I know it, my husband knows it, even my five-year-old nephew knows it (to quote him: “Auntie Heli’s house is so messy!” Nothing like a child razzing you to have you shame-cleaning your house at 10 PM on a Monday). This is for the folks who are having trouble keeping up. I see you, friend!

At least he looks happy…

That said, just because I’m not the most organized/clean person in the world does not give me an excuse to Pigpen out.

You have to be a person, and that means that daily/weekly/monthly, you have stuff that simply needs to be done, and regularly. If you only do these when you’ve reached the “Auntie Heli’s house is so messy!” point, you are setting yourself up for so much more work than you need to (and again, late night shame-cleaning). 

So I propose an alternative: use a tasks app. The key here is not just making a to-do list, but scheduling recurring tasks. Here’s what to do: 

  • My phone screen yesterday (it’s time to spruce my background up for spring!)
    Start slow. Choose one or two tasks you know you need to do each week (or day or month). Maybe clean all your sinks on Saturday, or vacuum your bedroom on Tuesday. Don’t worry about making a list of everything that you want to get done each week or each day, just start with a couple and get used to doing them week-in, week-out. 
  • Keep it manageable. Limit yourself to tasks/chores that can be done within 30 minutes or so. Don’t get ambitious and just put “clean the house” on your list each Saturday. I doubt you’ll be able to get everything done, and if you do, knock it off because you’re making the rest of us look bad. 
  • Schedule the tasks on your task app. If you don’t have one, get one. Make sure it can schedule recurring tasks and remind you to do them. I use Google Tasks, but you could also use Microsoft To Do or Remember the Milk
  • Space it out. This is why you keep it to 30 minutes! If you remind yourself to clean out your fridge each Wednesday and that’s all you have to do, you might actually do it! Then on Saturday, you’ll only have a few things to worry about instead of the whole house. 

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