I feel like a pretend adult, especially when I can’t get adulty tasks done, like cleaning the house. I use these 5 tricks to clean when I just can’t adult.
When I talk about my depression, the one thing that constantly comes up is motivation. I just don’t have any. Motivation is the internal drive, desire, want, or need to accomplish goals. I definitely have goals but I just don’t have any motivation. It often makes things quite difficult to complete and it comes with a stigma of being lazy. I have to constantly remind myself that I am not lazy, the depression strips me of that internal drive. It is part of my illness.
Motivation is overrated
and relying on it is not necessarily a good thing.
Motivation comes and goes. If we only accomplished tasks and goals when we felt motivated not a lot would get done. Sometimes you just need to put on your big girl or boy pants and adult ~ with or without motivation.
I am not one to usually let my housework get out of control because living in a dirty, messy house completely sets off my anxiety. I do not like clutter, untidiness, or disarray. It causes complete chaos in my mind. It triggers my anxiety and I feel overwhelmed and out of control and it is likely to spark a depressive episode. Housekeeping is something I can control ~ so it makes me feel like I have my shit together when everything else is burning down around me 🤣.
However, I am definitely not perfect and there are weeks when things pile up and the mess is enormous and there are weeks when I just don’t have the energy to do anything. And when I am in a depressive episode I just don’t care. These are the tricks I use to get shit done when I don’t want to.
5 Tricks to Clean When You Just Can’t Adult:
The 2-Minute Rule:
Cleaning doesn’t need to take a whole day or be a laborious task. If there are things that take 2 minutes or less to do, you do it as soon as you think of it. You will be amazed at how much gets done without a lot of effort. If you stick to this rule when you do need to do a major clean it won’t take nearly as long.
The Everytime You Get Up Rule:
When you feel like you just can’t do anything and you are in bed or on the couch for the day (I’ve been there many times), use the ‘everytime you get up rule.’ Essentially, whenever you need to get up for a bathroom break or to get some snacks, you do 1 thing while you are up.
This rule gets you moving a little on bad days and sometimes you will find you get caught up and do multiple things while you are up. You also don’t need to finish each task, do what you can and finish the task the next time you get up.
Set A Timer:
Set a timer on your phone or on the stove for 10 or 15-minute increments. Work until the timer goes off and then take a break. You can set a timer again for your break if you feel you will have trouble getting back to work. After your break, set the timer again and repeat. This is also a great way to get the kids involved.
Commercial Break Rule:
I know many people don’t watch tv with commercials anymore, but if you do or if you PVR your favourite show don’t fast forward the commercial breaks. Use them as a way to get some work done. There are a lot of things you can do during a commercial break.
Create A Schedule:
When you keep on top of things, doing small tasks seems more manageable. You could do 1 room a day and repeat every week. Things stay clean and the cleaning does not take as long every week. If you get Saturday off, do you spend the day cleaning and getting groceries and you feel like your day to relax has been spent adulting? When you create a schedule you will free up more time for yourself and spend less time adulting (because truthfully, no one wants to adult on the weekends)
- Don’t feel guilty. You are trying and that’s what’s important.
- Don’t burn yourself out. You only have so much energy and managing your mental health takes a lot of energy. Remember to take care of yourself.
- Validate yourself. Living in a messy house can feel shameful and it is often something we keep private and hidden but tell someone what you accomplished! Give yourself praise for completing a task. Say some affirmations like “I’m getting things done” “I love the feeling of a clean house” “My bathroom is healthy and clean” “My bed is so cozy when it has fresh bedding.”
- Delegate! If you share your home then share the workload. Kids can pick up their own toys (make it a game with the timer); ask your partner to do a few tasks each day.
Do you have any other cleaning tricks to get things done when you don’t want to? I would love to hear them and add them to my toolbox!
And remember, Fake it ‘Till You Make It!
~ Lacey ~