If you have recently become a mother, then you probably don’t need anyone to tell you how much your life changes as a result of motherhood. Nonetheless, it’s worth highlighting that one of the things that can change dramatically is how tidy your house typically looks. With kids often running around the residence and not being too careful where they put this or that, a tidy home can seem like the Holy Grail when you are a mum… but you can still achieve it with the right approach.

Revise your definition of the word “tidy”

Starting with this advice might initially seem defeatist. However, if you have lots of other responsibilities besides looking after your little ones, then trying to keep your home to the standard of tidiness to which you used to be accustomed could overwhelm you. A Mother Far From Home points out that “tidy” once meant “that surfaces were clear, things were in proper boxes and the house was almost always ready for visitors.” This might not always be possible when kids play.

Keep fragile items away from children’s reach

If you have some elaborately-designed glass ornaments or delicate picture frames, it can obviously be heartbreaking if you walk into a room to find those items smashed on the floor. Yet, this might have simply been because your child was slightly too inquisitive and didn’t realise how precious those items were to you. You can prevent this kind of tragic situation by keeping fragile but valuable possessions in places too high for your kids to reach.

Do a wide-ranging sweep of the house every day

Once your children have settled into bed, sweep around the house to clear up the mess they have left after playtime. This should be done every day – and it will leave the house looking wonderfully tidy. Also, it probably wouldn’t take you any longer than about ten minutes at a time. Leaving that mess over several days could lead it to build up to a disconcerting degree – making that weekly sweep feeling rather more daunting than a day-after-day one would.

Assign a specific place for every item

Ever had occasions where you have picked something up only to think: “Where does this go?” That’s probably because the item has tended to be just left around in random places that were close at hand during previous tidying sessions. In future, with each item, mentally decide where exactly it will be kept. Then, the next time you tidy, you will be able to do so more decisively and, thus, quickly.

Combine home tidying and work tidying if possible

Tidying can certainly be started more quickly if you live where you work, since you won’t have to spend time travelling from home to the workplace. If, for instance, your residence includes a bar where drinks are commercially served, you could clean a bottle cooler only seconds before tidying your child’s bedroom – since that is genuinely how close by this part of the building could be.