I’m finally ready to complete my spring cleaning for 2020. Spring cleaning with a chronic illness (or cleaning in general) can be a major task. So I had to have a game plan.
I know I’m a couple months late with this post but oh well. Most people do their spring cleaning at the start of the season. (Is that a rule?) Oh well It’s never too late right?
This year I have a plan. Starting with my mindset to hacks and workarounds I’m determined to make it clean with a chronic illness. And I’m gonna share it all with you.
Cleaning with a Chronic Illness
What’s the big deal? It’s just cleaning right? WRONG.
When you have a chronic illness, ordinary and mundane activities are epic. The amount of energy you may exert is magnified for me. For example, even taking a shower depletes me of all my energy some days.
If I barely have enough energy to wash my bits, you can imagine how daunting cleaning an entire house can be.
People with chronic illness experience fatigue. We aren’t lazy. There just aren’t enough spoons in a day sometimes to get it all done.
Also, my particular illness, myasthenia gravis, is neuromuscular. I experience random weakness which makes deep cleaning and scrubbing very cumbersome.
I’m exhausted just thinking about it.
Tips for Cleaning Mindset
IDK about you but I have to be in the mood to clean. Mindset is everything. I have to literally wrap my mind around the concept of cleaning- especially if I’ve let it slip for a while.
The next time you’re ready to clean think about these mindset game-changers.
1. Clean in sections. Don’t stress about having to clean the everything. What’s that saying? Chew the elephant one bite at a time.
2. Start with decluttering. Get rid of little stuff first: junk mail, magazines, broken stuff. etc.
3. Big vs Little approach. Will doing a big item first make you feel accomplished or overwhelmed? Maybe starting smaller will keep you motivated. Do what works best for your personality type.
4. Get rid of things you don’t need or use anymore. My rule of thumb is have I used it in the past 2 seasons? Can I live without it?
5. Digital de-cluttering old apps, programs, picture, files on your phone, computer and tablet. It’s just old energy that’s blocking your storage and blessings. Great place to start.
6. Get your favorite cleaning supplies. I vote for a non-toxic brand but whatever floats your boat. Something that smells amazing.
7. Make it fun. Turn on your tunes and sing into that mop. Swiffer the floor with your feet. Like if you’re going to do it – do it fun.
Chronic Illness Cleaning Hacks
Kitchen Cleaning Hacks for the Chronically Ill
8. Stuck on food? Put some water and a little dish soap into your pot and heat it on the stove. It’ll soften things up and make it easier to wash.
9. Have you met my best friend aluminum foil? Even though I’ve purchased non stick pans, I still line those suckers with foil? Why? Its makes the clean up 10 times easier. Ball it up and go.
Bathroom Cleaning Hacks for the Chronically Ill
10. Use Method Daily Shower Spray. While you may not be able to get down and scrub the tub/shower clean after every use, you can spray it down. This is my favorite after shower spray.
11. Long Handle Tools. The literally have extendo handles for everything. Here’s one for a shower scrub brush.
12. Disposable Toilet Wands. Although not eco-friendly or all natural, they are quick and efficient. Having the cleaner built into the wand takes out the step of having to coat with cleaner and the extra scrubbing.
13. Disinfectant Wipes and Sprays. You can do a quick wipe on a daily basis for maintenance. When COVID-19 first hit, I shared my love for the Seventh Generation ones.
General Cleaning Hacks for the Chronically Ill
I covered the kitchen and bathroom first because those areas tend to have the most germs. But I have a little something for the rest of the house as well.
14. Mr Clean Magic Erasers work on just about everything. Touch up them wall scuffs and especially helpful for them baseboards. Even the off brand ones I picked up from Target worked well.
15. Lightweight vacuum. I have 3 levels to clean plus stairs. After I was diagnosed, carrying a vacuum up and down was just NOT the move. I decided to get one of those lightweight Dysons. I ADORE IT.
16. Floor Steamer. I use my floor steamer in the kitchen, my bathrooms and on the vinyl flooring. It gives an amazing shine for each area and the heat from the steam removes dirt and scuffs like a breeze.
17. Keep the cleaning materials needed in each room or at least on each floor. Walking up and down the stairs carrying supplies is just not for me.
18. Get on a cleaning schedule. Make it reasonable for you and stick to it. I’ve been slacking since COVID but I’m going to bounce back.
Workarounds for Cleaning with a Chronic Illness
Sometimes, try as you might, you wont be up to cleaning. And that’s perfectly ok. Here are a few tips to keep in mind because flare ups happen.
19. Hire a cleaning service or pay a friend to clean for you a regular basis if you have the funds to do it.
20. If you don’t live alone, have your family pitch in. Tell then you need help and explain to them where the stuff is, how it goes etc.
21. Invest in a Roomba or similar. It’ll clean your floors for you.
22. Have extra underwear to stretch out having to do laundry.
23. Get some disposable plates and ditch the dishes.
Spring Cleaning Checklist and Calendar
As I mentioned earlier, I wanted to do my spring cleaning in March but COVID had different plans. Luckily there’s still time to do my Spring Cleaning in Spring 2020.
One of the tips I gave was making a plan. First write out all the things that need to be cleaned. Once you have it all done, it’s time to get to cleaning. Check them off one by one until the list is done.
You can create your own checklist. But I made one that I’m happy to share with you. Click here to download it.
Some people aren’t checklisters but I’ve found that success hinges on you setting a schedule and stick to it. So for the month of May, I am going to tackle one cleaning task per day. It’s going to be great. I’m calling it the CLEAN in 30 Spring Cleaning Challenge.
You can get a copy of my cleaning calendar here and join me.