1R/D to a Clean House!

I’ve been meaning to give you an update about my new 1 Room a Day to a Clean House plan, and now seems as good a time as any. I have a fat list of blog subjects in my line-up, but cleaning is what I’m doing right now.

So, to refresh, the 1R/D plan goes like this: 6 rooms in our house, 6 days in a week and on the 7th I rest. The room of the day gets scrubbed up shiny. All the usual picking up and sweeping, but then I take it a step or two further– mopping, wiping dust off the mantles, cleaning windows, dealing with accumulated clutterdrifts. This doesn’t mean I completely disregard the rest of the house mind you. There’s still the daily dishes, laundry, and picking up toys. But the rest of the house I keep just above board. The room of the day gets to sparkle.

Certainly the 1R/D Plan not for everyone, and who knows really if it will turn out to be for me, in the long run. But at the outset, I have to say I kind of like it.

I like that the house stays pretty clean. It’s not the kind of clean anyone would notice. There’s still toys strewn hither and yon. Dishes piled by the sink. Laundry baskets in various states. It doesn’t particularly look clean. But it doesn’t bombard you with dirty either. And to me, based on my past record, if it’s not filthy, it’s clean.

And because it’s generally clean-ish, I can put an hour or two into cleaning and see a clean room! It’s so satisfying!

I like the 1R/D plan because my house is cleaner, but the reason I think it might actually stick is because it’s freeing.

I know not everybody feels this way, but I do well with the focus/disregard angle. It feels easier to me not to have to think about every room all at once. One room at a time. ‘The bathroom sink has toothpaste spooge? Who cares, it’s Monday. I don’t have to clean the bathroom until Wednesday.’ It’s a way to let go. It’s like making a list so that I can release my mental grip on everything I need to do. (Except that after releasing my mental grip I always lose my lists. That’s the weird kind of person I am. Anal enough to write a list, but not anal enough to remember where the hell I wrote it…)

I was curious how this One Day at a Time Program would handle the inevitable spills off the wagon. I had missed a day or two here and there already, and found it not a problem. I just catch that room next time around. I mean I only used to do this kind of cleaning twice a year, so even if I only get it once every two weeks, we’ve come a loooong way baby.

After almost two weeks of The Sick House in which I was lucky just to keep on top of the pukey laundry, I have the real test I was unknowingly hoping for.

And I have to say I feel a bit better about heading into the next week with a sort of a plan of attack. We’ll see how it goes, but after two days of general clutter-control, underneath the house isn’t looking so bad. I feel quite optimistic.