Post # 1
I’m sturggling bees- but the struggle will be over soon.
I currently work between 55-65 hours a week. When I go over to friends houses with their sparkling counter tops and dusted shelves and vaccuumed rugs I feel like such a failure. I feel like I can’t keep up with my own house. I work 4 11 hour shifts and after one of those shifts I usually come home and crash. Then Friday-Saturday I work two eight hour shifts so those are generally my “catch up” days. I unfortunately eat out a lot as I can’t get in a consistant routine of cooking, I always kind of feel like I’m hanging by a thread as far as keeping my life together.
I am switching careers soon and will only be doing 40 hours. But I sometimes feel like a failure that I’m unable to keep up at this rate, and I’m sometimes afraid that even after the career switch that maybe this is just who I am? A lazy, messy person?
Post # 3
Honestly I find there just isn’t much mess when I have particularly long weeks at work so I don’t find there is much to keep on top of.
I’m the sort of person who feels mentally fresher when my space is clean and clutter free so it is something I make an effort to do when it is getting a little messy. If it isn’t important to you then you will struggle more with motivation to do it.
Also it is worth bearing in mind you are a visitor in your friend’s home and therefore probably seeing their home in its best state. I know that I always do a quick run round the house when I know someone is coming over.
Why isn’t your husband picking up the slack since you work so much?
Post # 4
I doubt you are just a messy lazy person. People who have clean houses all the time have systems in place so that they never need to do those big overhaul cleans. They just have to keep it all humming along. A big part of that is reducing clutter and having adequate storage. For years my kitchen was a disaster but once I renovated it and actually had enough storage space it’s been a breeze to maintain.
I also had to learn to get over feelings like “well I have to dust before I vacuum so I’ll do it all another day”. NO. Gah. I NEVER have enough time to do it all in one shot and rather than doing something I did nothing because I couldn’t do it “perfectly”. At least for me with a dog and a toddler I have to vacuum my main floor at least every other day (usually every day). It’s just totally gross if I don’t. But that doesn’t mean I have to pull out the furniture and get the crevice tool and go to town. I clean what I can clean in 10-20 minutes each night and accept that it is good enough. If the bookshelves are a little dustier than I like that’s less important than having clean floors.
As for cooking you don’t need to make something fancy every night. Simple meals can be healthy and delicious. Whenever you DO cook make enough for leftovers – you can either repurpose them throughout the week OR freeze it for another time. I feed my family a home cooked meal at least 6 nights a week, but I sure as hell don’t cook every night.
Post # 5
Another tip I like to use when I feel exhausted and like I don’t want to deal with the house is to be kind to my future self. I don’t want to wake up the next day, look at a messy kitchen, and think “fuuuuuck, last night Lilli let the pots get all crusty and now I have to scrub them”.
Also never leave a room empty handed – without a doubt there is something in that room that belongs in the direction you are going do bring it and you’ll be tidying without much effort.
Post # 6
My friends who have long hours have either a supportive spouse, lots of help, or lots of energy!
Post # 7
Yikes. I’m lucky that I’m no longer doing that now, but when I’m teaching I’m regularly working 10-12 hour days, sometimes more, and then also on the weekends. I just didn’t really maintain that much. I would come home, eat dinner, and crash. I’d try to get up early enough to wash the dishes in the morning, but mostly everything was put on hold until the weekend.
Post # 8
Well, first of all, your friends might have done extra cleaning anticipating that guests were coming over (I know I do that).
But to answer your question: Dh and I both have demanding jobs with long hours and we have cleaners come every 2 weeks. Since we had our son 15 months ago, we’ve found that it’s pretty much impossible to keep things tidy and our kitchen/dining room get dirty a billion times faster, so we’re considering having our cleaners come every week now instead. We do our best to cleanup little things as quickly as we can after the baby goes to sleep so that things don’t pile up and become overwhelming, but sometimes the place just looks like shit for a few days and oh well.
Post # 9
Relatable. Honestly our place just is a bit messy. It is what it is. On Saturday/Sunday I try to pick at least one of those days to go to town and really get after the cleaning so I can have a somewhat “fresh” start Monday.
Also sometimes I invite people over just so I have to clean. LOL. Whatever motivates you to get it done
Post # 10
I agree with the comment about never leaving a room empty handed.
One of my friends (who has a big house and kids but only works a 4 day week) still can’t keep on top of the housework, and not because she is lazy. She got a cleaner. A surprising number of my working friends have both cleaners and gardeners, and we are not in an unusually affluent area. Worth considering it if you can afford it.
Post # 11
Most of my friends hire cleaners.
I am the only single friend, and paying mortgage/condo fees solo plus student loans a cleaner is unfortunatley out of my budget.
I try to keep the living room spotless all the time, so I have at least one room to relax in and not feel overwhelmed. I try to make my bed in the morning. Honestly after a 12 hour day I often just take a shower and pass out. I try to clean up after myself as much as possible (do the dishes as soon as I finish eating, etc.). What I find hardest is that I am adamant if I am working long days Monday to Friday I am going camping/hiking/skiing on the weekend. I usually have a whole bag to unpack, and often it waits until midweek until I can get to it.
I always clean the washroom, living room and kitchen before people come over, so keep in mind you might be seeing that.
I think the key is just not to let yourself become a sloth.
Post # 12
My husband and I both work full-time (he works 50+ hours a week, I put in a minimum of 40 but usually more). I’m also pregnant and we have a 4 year old. The majority of the housekeeping work gets done on the weekends. I do laundry once a week (sat or sunday). We have a roomba which drastically helps with my floors LOL. I try to clean up after dinner every night and do daily tidying as much as possible but honestly sometimes our house looks like shit and I’ve learned to just try to let it go as much as possible!
Post # 13
My spouse and both consistently work long (55+) hour weeks, and here’s what works for us:
- regular housecleaner. She comes once a week for a full day, and we occasionally will have her make an extra visit, if we’re working even longer hours than usual. (She vacuums, dusts, changes the sheets, does the bathrooms, does some laundry, changes towels, and also does stuff like deep-cleaning the stove, refrigerator, etc.) She is a life saver.
- Stay on top of cleaning/organizing/delcuttering. I’m better about this than my spouse, unfortunately. But stuff like.. not leaving a mess, cleaning up after yourself, putting dirty dishes into the dishwasher rather than leaving them on the counter.
- We use a grocery service for about 85% of our groceries and have a recurring order delivered every Tuesday night. (Staples like milk, butter, eggs, toilet paper, dried pasta, etc.) We get our produce and meat at a nice little shop in our neighborhood, though. This saves us a lot of time and we never risk running out of the basics.
- Meal prepping and planning. It’s a hard habit to develop, but it saves a lot of time! I do a lot of cooking in the InstantPot and in the CrockPot and I like to prep ingredients in gallon-size ziplock bags so all I have to do is pull out a bag and toss the contents into the Instant pot.
- If your washer has a setting to control when the cycle starts, this can help. We like to throw a load of clothes in when we leave for work in the morning, but with a delay so the cycle will finish around the time we get home from work and is ready to go in the dryer.
- We have cats. The Roomba is a lifesaver for keeping cat hair under control!
- Google shared calendar for stuff like keeping track of trash/recycle day, the housecleaner’s schedule, etc.
I’m also a big proponent of “even if you only have 5, 10, 15 minutes.. you can get a lot done!”. We tend to overestimate how long it takes to do chores and clean up.
Post # 14
My husband works similar hours (well is a full time student in an excellerated program) and is also going through Monday-Friday full time clinical rotations. It was much better before his program picked up speed because he was able to pick up the slack where I wasn’t.
On my one day off it’s always a struggle choosing between going out doing something fun/socializing or staying home and catching up on chores. I generally toggle. If I catch up on chores then my week is easier but I feel like I’m going stir crazy, if I go out then I am able to recharge for the week mentally however then my week is more stressful with having to try and catch up with chores. It’s like a never ending cycle and it’s exhausting.
I wouldn’t say I live in filth or anything. We keep a good handle on the cats and their litter- keep a good handle on the necessary things like garbage and laundry. It just seems like the clutter and things just pile up. Stacks of mail, clean laundry baskets, stuff we bring home from shopping or just random junk. I definitely don’t vaccuum and dust as much as I should. I have some control issues when it comes to smell so if I smell something funky walking in it gets dealt with right away (ie: if the cat’s litter box is a bit too full or if the garbage needs to be done).
We’re barely getting by on just my income right now as it is so a cleaning lady is not possible.
Post # 15
I could’ve said this myself. “it’s always a struggle choosing between going out doing something fun/socializing or staying home and catching up on chores. I generally toggle. If I catch up on chores then my week is easier but I feel like I’m going stir crazy, if I go out then I am able to recharge for the week mentally however then my week is more stressful with having to try and catch up with chores. It’s like a never ending cycle and it’s exhausting. “
We’ve been running pretty good with events, outings, and such for the last few weeks I have hit the wall and feel like I am so behind on my house. I always feel the constant pull between recharging mentally/socially and then feeling like my house is a “mess”. And then if I spend a few weekends at home…I go stir crazy.