When I discovered the #1 cleaning hack for tired moms, I had to try it. A messy house raises my stress levels through the roof – especially on top of a wild toddler and breastfeeding baby. Between running a business from home and mothering my two littles, I’m left with just enough energy to get myself showered and into bed. This typically spells disaster for my house.
I first spotted this cleaning hack on Tiktok, where all great mom-ideas come from. This creator’s didn’t stress perfection, and that attracted me to her profile. While a clean house was still necessary – and required to make things liveable – toys still existed and clothes were not always put up. This led me to my first lesson: it’s okay to not be perfect.
While that’s not my cleaning hack, it is something to remember and accept while being a mama. Otherwise, no matter what cool hack or simplified schedule you find, you’ll still get stressed out and overwhelmed because things don’t end up “perfect” like you want.
But now to the good stuff, my #1 cleaning hack for tired mamas:
The #1 Cleaning Hack for Tired Moms
I call the #1 cleaning hack for tired moms interval cleaning. Interval cleaning focuses primarily on one task or one room for a set amount of time. For example, a 15 minute timer as soon as the kids go down for a nap, and you clean what you can in the den. There’s no pressure to clean it all. Just do what you can for 15 minutes, and when you’re done you can decide if you want to do more.
Additionally, you can choose to do multiple intervals. For example, you can clean for 15 minutes, then 30 minutes watching TV or relaxing, then another 15 minute cleaning. Or, if you’re feeling in the cleaning mood, once you’re done with your 15 minutes, you can set another 15 minutes and try cleaning what you can in another room.
Personally, I like to tackle 15 minutes in the morning before my babies wake up (and after my morning coffee) and 15 minutes after bedtime, when I’m still on the lookout for my sneaky toddler creeping out his bedroom. When my littles somehow manage to nap at the same time, I try to add another 15 minutes of cleaning time in! It’s really helped me stay on top of and manage my household chores.
How Does it Work With Toddlers?
Sounds like a cool cleaning hack for tired mamas with only one little – or even just a little that actually naps, right? At first, that’s what it was for me too. It wasn’t until I started getting my toddler involved in cleaning with me that it seemed feasible to do everyday. He could tackle the little things like picking up toys or ensuring clothes and bedding landed in the laundry basket. Eventually we were able to introduce sweeping and mopping too.
My toddler might not be a huge fan of our cleaning time, but he powers through it like a champ! Sometimes he likes to throw a little party when we’re done, and if we’ve done a really good job we celebrate with a favorite snack or sweets.
What About Cleaning With Two Kids?
I’m not going to lie, I didn’t think my little cleaning hack was going to survive after baby #2. She was (and still is) a handful to say the least. She doesn’t like to be separated from me, and she really doesn’t like it when we put her down for a nap or to clean. And it’s even rarer for both her and my toddler to be asleep at the same time before bedtime.
Luckily, I was able to get around it by distractions! Mainly, food. My little girl is a foodie through and through. So, I began taking advantage of her snack times and meal times to do our 15 minutes of cleaning. With this, I was able to still have cleaning time and not cut more into my precious after-bedtime me-time that I desperately needed after two kids.
I know that it won’t always go smoothly, and you might need to skip a day. However, the most important thing is to just do the 15 minutes and be done. You don’t need to do more. Once you’re done, you’re done. If you feel like doing more – great. If not, don’t.
How to Get Started With Interval Cleaning
I highly recommend seeing if someone can watch your kids for a day and tackle your house, especially if it’s become a bit of a mess (no shame, mine is too). This will get you started on the right foot. I know we don’t all have access to a village. Even having a friend or babysitter come entertain them while you clean helps out a lot. After a day of cleaning, it’ll be easier to focus during your 15 minutes without becoming overwhelmed with the rest of the house.
Outside of interval cleaning, there are still a few tasks that I take on everyday such as:
- Dishes, we don’t have a dishwasher so they pile up quickly
- Laundry, I try to do at least one load per day
- Sweeping, I have all hardwood floors and a dog – must I say more?
- My desk, it’s my space and it makes me feel good to clean it off in the morning
What does your cleaning routine look like? Have you tried interval cleaning before? Follow me @everydayshemoms_ for more mom tips & tricks!
Hey Mama! I’m Mckayla, the mama behind Everyday She Moms! I’m a proud mama of two littles while running my own business on the side. With the craziness of learning how to be a mom to my own, I love sharing our adventures and connecting with other mamas in the world!
Check out more tips for developing a cleaning routine!