Would you rather run a tight ship, or have even a single moment during the day to just sit and rest? When it comes to housework, it can often feel like it’s an either/or situation, but it doesn’t have to be!
The key to maintaining a clean and comfortable home without devoting all your time to it is directing your efforts strategically. If you focus your attention on chores that have a big impact on the overall appearance and cleanliness of your home (such as these cleaning tasks you should never, ever skip ) while easing up on other chores that aren’t making much of a difference (or that may not even be necessary in the first place!), you can have your clean home and enjoy it too! :-)
To help you make your cleaning efforts more efficient and impactful, today I’ll be sharing 9 household chores you can easily do less frequently, or even eliminate all together. Work smarter, not harder, and cross these chores off your to-do list once and for all!
9 Household Chores That Are Wasting Your Time
1. Drying Dishes By Hand
Even those of us with dishwashers have to wash dishes by hand from time to time. And while drying those dishes with a dish towel afterward may get them back into the cupboard faster, wiping them down can easily make them dirtier!
Unless they’re freshly laundered, the towels you use in your kitchen can harbor loads of bacteria, including pathogens that can make you sick. Instead, dry your dishes the more sanitary way—load them into a drying rack and walk away!
Now that wrinkle-resistant clothing options are widely available and many dryers offer wrinkle release or steam settings, bulky clothing irons may soon become a relic of the past! For the few items you do currently iron, here’s a simple way to save yourself even more effort: remove clothes from the dryer as soon as they’re done drying.
Hang or fold your clothes ASAP so they spend less time sitting in a heap in your dryer or on your couch. You’ll be surprised at how much of a difference it makes!
3. Folding Underwear
A lot of underwear doesn’t actually wrinkle, so there’s no need to spend time folding it. Just toss them right into the drawer instead! (If it’s a matter of saving space in your drawer or keeping it organized, stack them flat instead.)
4. Dusting Bookshelves
Dusting the edges of your bookshelves can be a surprisingly time-consuming part of your cleaning routine, especially if you have a lot of them! Instead, eliminate the problem completely by aligning the spines of your books flush with the edge of the shelves. There won’t be a space in front of the books for dust to accumulate, and dust will accumulate far slower behind the books.
5. Using A Top Sheet
The debate about whether or not to use a top sheet continues to reignite from time to time amongst members of the One Good Thing team! Regardless of which side you’re on, there’s no doubt that eliminating your top sheet will save you some time when you make your bed.
Of course, you’ll still have to wash your duvet cover (or whatever touches your skin directly) regularly, but you can wash it along with your sheets to keep your routine efficient.
6. Peeling Vegetables
Peeling vegetables can add considerable time to your dinner prep, and a lot of the time it isn’t even necessary! As long as they’ve been washed thoroughly, you can cook and eat carrots, potatoes, cucumbers, and many other fruits and veggies with the skin on. (Exceptions include winter squash, celery root, and anything else with an exceptionally tough outer skin.)
7. Filing Your Bills
If you haven’t yet elected to receive all your bills and statements electronically, it can be a huge time-saver! Not only is going paperless more environmentally friendly, but digital files are much faster to file away and keep organized. (Plus you won’t have to spend all that time shredding the ones you don’t need to keep!)
Some companies will even give you a financial perk for switching to e-statements—ask about potential discounts when you make the switch.
8. Mowing Frequently To Keep Your Grass Short
Did you know that bees feed on the wildflowers that grow in lawns that are manicured less frequently? Not only will switching to a more lax mowing schedule free up some of your time, it’ll be good for your garden and flowerbeds too!
Keep your grass to a height of about three inches to keep your flowers and their pollinators happy. (And for more efficient and effective lawn care tips, check out this post!)
9. Vacuuming Entire Rooms
Aim to vacuum every room thoroughly about once per week, and then hit the high traffic areas as needed throughout the week. There’s no reason to hit every square inch of the carpet every time you pull out the vacuum, especially areas like under the coffee table where no one is walking! Another big time saver when it comes to cleaning your floors is to leave dirty shoes by the door. It’s a simple tip, but there’s a reason “no shoes in the house” is a rule in so many households: it keeps the whole house cleaner, which means less work for the one cleaning it!
How do you save time when it comes to household chores?