We’ve all spent time with the smaller projects in our homes, the kind of stuff that takes up an afternoon at most—but what about the really big jobs?

For many, deep cleaning the home involves mentally psyching themselves up. The toughest messes and the biggest jobs require a lot more time, energy, and attention, and it’s pretty understandable that most people might get a little put off by the idea.

However, there are ways to both get your home cleaner than ever before, and make it easier on yourself next time too! By taking steps during your next big deep cleaning project to keep it clean for longer and make it easier on yourself the next time a big clean rolls around, you might even have an easier time finding the motivation to do it!

 

Keep all your tools close at hand

One bothersome part of cleaning is trying to remember where all your supplies are. Without the proper planning, you could find yourself spending more time looking for stuff than you do cleaning. Take some time to locate everything you normally use for cleaning (your lucky broom, your favorite all-surface spray, etc) and keep them right nearby, using plastic storage bins or over the door storage to make sure they’re right at hand when needed.

 

Make a plan of action

During any big deep cleaning project, it’s easy to get distracted by new messes you find along the way. How long has that stain been on the ceiling? Is now a good time to clean out the microwave? These can all start to pile up and throw you off track after a while, so one of the best ways to stay focused is to start out by making a plan and a goal. How many rooms do you plan to tackle? What’s the biggest sticking point in each room you’re cleaning? Map out your approach and the whole thing will go much faster—and stay right on track.

 

Play music or set a timer

Speaking of distractions, the easiest way to let a project start to draw itself out is to let the minutes fly by while you spend time checking your phone, cleaning other rooms, or losing focus on the task at hand. A great way to stay motivated and remind yourself how much time you’re working with is to make a playlist of your favorite songs or set a timer. Make a 20 or 30 minute playlist, or simply set a timer somewhere in the room, and get cleaning until the music is finished. You’ll often find yourself getting in a groove and continuing to clean long after time is up.

 

Figure out where to start

If your problem with beginning a project is being unsure of the first step, cleaning can go a lot easier if you map out a good beginning. When starting a cleaning project, begin with one of the faster projects like vacuuming the living room or putting the dishes in the dishwasher to help you get in the headspace of staying productive and cleaning. The rest of the project will fall into place as soon as you can get over that first hurdle.

 

Remember: it doesn’t have to be perfect

A lot of people can fall into the trap of being too critical on themselves after a long cleaning project, no matter how much better their home looks when it’s done. If you find yourself taking way too long in one room, or getting too hung up on one part of the job (cleaning your countertops, or getting that stain out of the couch) then you may be losing focus and becoming too hard on yourself. You’re not expecting a visit from the Queen Mother, you’re just trying to get your living room back together. This will stop you from getting discouraged, help you use your time better, and make it easier to get started next time.

 

Got any other tips for staying motivated while cleaning? Drop a comment below!