Inside: When we have little kids under our feet, home life can feel chaotic. That’s why I advocate things like the evening sweep and simple tidy routines with kids. Here is another awesome tool to have in your tool belt when the home starts to seem like it’s out of control.
As I walked from one end of the house to the other… I was more and more annoyed.
You know that horrible feeling that is like “I am so annoyed right now that I want to look away, but that’ll make it worse, and then I want to clean it, but I Can’t Even because everything is just so Ugh I need to drink some coffee and eat some cheese.”
Or maybe that’s just me…
The house wasn’t completely disgusting and messy. It wasn’t even that toys were everywhere and the kids refused to clean up.
No… it was just that the house wasn’t working for me.
Things didn’t have proper places.
Things were broken that should have worked.
And things that were broken should have been tossed.
Rooms were missing something vital for too long.
Corners became dumping grounds for lack of baskets.
It was all out of control. And when things feel out of control – particularly if you’re a Type A wife and mom like I am – you become stressed.
It’s hard to feel at peace when your house feels chaotic
It’s extremely hard to not feel overwhelmed when you are at odds with your environment and the systems that are going on there.
Then, I found it. I found this little book I was sent a while ago and hadn’t read yet.
The book was called Building Your House and, though the whole book was excellent, one part really stood out to me. It was about how we need to do a House Walk.
Before she even went into the specifics I knew it’d be something I had to do in our home to get things to a state that didn’t cause me a Eye Twitch all day long. Let’s dive in…
What is a House Walk?
A House Walk is a purposeful tour you make around your home to determine the following things:
- Mess “hot zones”
- Things that need repairing or replacing (light bulbs, door handles, etc.)
- Stuff to throw out
- What you are lacking (storage, baskets, tools, etc.)
- Projects to be done
- Opportunities to reuse or re-purpose
Essentially, you walk around your house with a critical eye and figure out the things that are driving you or your family nuts and start fixing them one by one.
Now, this isn’t something like “kitchen renovation” or “paint entire upstairs hallway.”
Sure, those things need doing. But this House Walk determines the small inconvenient things that are causing you stress that can be fixed rather quickly.
Tell me more…
What we will do here is cut down on the stress, clutter, and dysfunction.
We’re not tackling major projects that cause stress. Know what stuck out to me when I visited the kid’s bathroom (that I also use the majority of the time)?
The nightlight was burned out!
This has been doing my head in for weeks. I added “night light bulb” to my shopping list.
Then I added label maker tape replacement so I can finish a project that’s been taking up the dining room table.
What to look for in your house walk
In our House Walk we are not trying to rebuild an entire home, we’re trying to make things run more smoothly and efficiently.
Look out for things like:
- Small things that are not working or broken | light bulbs, door knobs, drawers, squeaky things, old toys, lamps, etc.
- Things you need to buy | baskets, hampers, stain remover, hooks for the wall, hangers, drawer inserts, toy storage, light bulbs, etc.
- Things you no longer use that you can re-work in other rooms to save you money and time | toys to be passed down, clothes to be passed down, unused baskets or containers, etc.
- And things you can donate or throw out | old cell phone chargers, baby monitors, unused toys, clothes you no longer wear, appliances that are broken, tchotchkes you don’t need, etc.
Now, though these things may seem small, sometimes it’s the smallest changes that make the biggest difference in your peace of mind.
Every night I use the bathroom (5x a night since I’m With Child) I’m annoyed there’s no night light. While this is an easy fix, it just needed to be done.
How to do a House Walk
Well… this is very technical here, ladies, and I don’t want to lose you… You walk around your house and write down all the problems.
Ha. Okay, okay.
Go from room to room and write down things that need doing. I created some printables linked below, but a paper will do. Go from room to room, area to area, and mark down what things you need to buy/move/replace/get rid of.
In fact, as you’re walking, you’ll probably pick quite a few things up, get things done, or put into piles to help you with this.
You won’t need tons of time, but I’d try to do the entire house (or a least each floor) at once because then you’ll see where you can move from one room to another.
The result will surprise you. It’s amazing how one small tweak makes all the difference.
Move plate storage nearer to the dishwasher.
Create a drop spot for your keys or purse.
Put a basket where people drop clutter.
Download, print, and start yourHouse Walk ASAP!
You are NOT lazy, disorganized, or unmotivated. The fact is, if your home feels chaotic,it’s your systems. With easy efficient systems, habits, and routines you can start to have the home (and home atmosphere) you crave without working yourself into a frenzy.
Take this quiz to see how well your home systems work then get free and easy hacks to help make your home more tidy, peaceful, and organized.
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