When life gets in the way of your healthy homemaking habits

Healthy Homemaking Habits start with having a plan

It’s said that it takes approximately 30 days to form a new habit and longer to unlearn a bad one.  Staying on task, maintaining a clean home, and sticking to menu planning isn’t easy for most people.  Developing healthy homemaking habits can take a while, and it’s discouraging when life gets in the way.

I tend to do really well for a few weeks and then fall off the bandwagon.  It can be really discouraging.  Is this something you can relate to?  It’s easy to beat ourselves up when we let this happen.  It can be really embarrassing if someone stops by.  Or the state of the dishes in the sink might make you want to run away. 

It’s essential to understand the root cause of what caused this to happen.  It might be something you can work on, or caused by something outside of your control.  When we know the cause, we can find a solution.  Here some tips and tricks to help you get back on track and stick to your healthy homemaking habits.

When life gets in the way of your healthy homemaking habits

Envision what a clean house would look like. 

Remind yourself of how good it will feel when you accomplish even the smallest of tasks.  Your house has been clean before and will be clean again.  Visualize how you would like things to look.  Not to strive for perfection, but as a gentle reminder that you can do this!

Don’t play the blame game

Close your eyes, and remove yourself from the mess.  The state of your home does not define you.  Just because it’s messy does not mean you are a failure.  I have played this game before, and it doesn’t end well.  I end up more upset and anxious, which sets me back even further. 

Find some inspiration and psych yourself up

Do you have a quote that speaks to you? Or a scripture verse that encourages you?  Jot it down on a post-it note and put it somewhere prominent.

Also, there’s nothing better in the world than a friend you can call, to reassure you that you’re not alone!  That it’s okay to have a messy home, and that everyone does. 

There was a study that found self-talk to be very useful.  Telling yourself, “I got this!” can go a long way.  I also find inspiration in others.  I don’t know why, but watching American Ninja Warrior helps me immensely!  Seeing these women overcome huge disadvantages of their male counterparts and striving to reach challenging goals and succeeding is awe-inspiring.  It helps me tell myself, “If they can do it, I can definitely do x, y, or z!”   

Have a contingency plan- the bare minimum

I know that we each have a certain level of cleanliness and organization that we would like to maintain. These goals and expectations are usually realistic under normal circumstances.  But if you are finding that you can’t keep up, for whatever reason, it’s good to tame the expectations and have a plan in place to do the bare minimum. 

Healthy homemaking habits start when you’re healthy.  Whether physically, mentally, or emotionally.  When any or all of these become unbalanced, it’s not possible to stick to our usual routine.  We hope that any of these circumstances will be short-lived, but in the meantime, it’s good to modify your expectations and goals. 

Think of this as an abridged homemaking schedule.  It’s a fall back plan for when life gets too busy to keep up with all that you can typically get done.


Decide what will help the most.  If you are worried if someone might stop over, then maintaining a clean living area might be most important.  If you have a restricted diet and need to cook meals at home, making sure to meal plan and tidy up the kitchen might be a top priority. 

The goal isn’t to get everything done at once, but to decide what’s most important to you. 

Manageable goals

Break down each goal into specific tasks.  Make sure each one is not too overwhelming.  That way, when you have time to tackle a project, you know what needs to be done.  The goal isn’t for these things to be elaborate but just to get by until you have more time and energy to get back to your usual healthy self. 

Set aside small chunks of time

When you find yourself in a situation where you just can’t keep up, it’s easy to be overwhelmed and just forget to clean.  Since you’ve come up with a game plan in advance, set aside some time for your homemaking activities.

This might involve setting a time, scheduling something on your calendar, or setting a reminder.  Technology can be great in that it will do the thinking and remembering for you!

Accepting yourself in survival mode

Everything has its season.  It’s okay if you’re not able to keep up with homemaking habits.  We each do the best that we can.  Self-acceptance and grace are super important.  Sometimes life circumstances get in the way, and other times we have lost sight of the goal.  Considering the cause will help keep things in perspective.

Identify the cause

Too much on your schedule?

There are only so many hours in the day.  It’s natural to overextend ourselves—too many family activities or work demands more time.

Bad At Time Management?

This is one of my biggest downfalls.  From procrastination to distractions, it’s easy to get sidetracked or waste time on things that aren’t as important.

Healthy Homemaking habits start with a plan

This is one of my biggest downfalls.  From procrastination to distractions, it’s easy to get sidetracked or waste time on things that aren’t as important.

 Activities Outside the Norm

Sticking to routines and having structure is very helpful to me when keeping up with my healthy homemaking habits.  Holidays, special events, and even going on vacation can disrupt normalcy. 

Life-shattering events

Certain things end up happening that are entirely out of our control and difficult.  Let’s say your basement floods or a significant home repair comes up.  A family member ends up sick. 

The more severe the circumstance, the more stress it causes.  Even needing to stay at home due to government orders and the change to our lifestyle can disrupt everything. 

Poor health

Homemaking feels overwhelming when not feeling well.  Health issues are prevalent. It might just be a funk, or it could be something more chronic.  Thyroid issues, seasonal affective disorder, and even sleep problems don’t allow us to function at our best.

Fall back plan for healthy homemaking habits

Healthy Homemaking habits start with a plan

So, what does this look like? 

It feels like, over the last few years, it’s been one thing after another.  I get on a good homemaking schedule, and then shortly after, something would happen that would knock me off of my routine.  I struggle with time management skills, so I end up not prioritizing my homemaking responsibilities as much as I should. 

Here are some ideas to plan for when something happens that doesn’t allow you to stick to your homemaking schedule.

  1. Create a menu plan for a week’s amount of meals.  Pick out easy recipes that are family favorites.  Create a shopping list of ingredients needed for the meals.  If you are too overwhelmed to meal plan one week, you’ll have a plan in place.  Go through the list, cross off any ingredients you already have stocked in your pantry or fridge.
  2. Consider having your groceries delivered.  If you have an account set up in advance, you’ll just need to sign in and start ordering
  3. Get the family involved.  Make sure everyone puts their dishes in the dishwasher and then run it gets emptied immediately.  I like to wait until the dishwasher is full, but find that when life gets hectic or feels out of control, that getting into a routine and running it daily helps me stay on track
  4. Set a timer and run the vacuum.  Don’t worry about getting into every nook and cranny just vacuum the main traffic areas.
  5. Spray down the shower with a cleaner and let sit for 10-15 minutes before showering.  This can hinder buildup and extend the time before needing to clean.
  6. It’s okay if you don’t get your laundry folded.  If you have a spare room where you can place washed laundry, it’ll be out of the way but accessible until you find time to fold it.  If stressed or not feeling well, a good movie or tv show can be relaxing.  It’s also a great time to get some folding in.
  7. Have baskets around to help collect items that belong in a room to quickly tidy up when the space gets messy, and there’s not enough time to put everything away

Are you Struggling with Finding Joy in Homemaking?

Sign up for your copy of How to Bring Joy Back to Homemaking. This guide will provide the encouragement you need and give homemaking a purpose. You will also receive updates to Simply Renewed Living and ocassional newsletters with tips and tricks to create the life you want through organizing and self growth.

Try to find enjoyment in homemaking activities

Though I love being organized, I don’t really like cleaning much.  It’s easy for me to drag my feet and often struggle with motivation when life gets busy and overwhelming.  Cleaning and laundry fall to the wayside.  But the downside is that I get stressed when my house isn’t in order.

One of my goals is to enjoy homemaking more.  To find satisfaction in having a clean home and making it a higher priority.  I want to alter my mindset and have a better attitude when it comes to keeping a healthy homemaking schedule. 

So, when unfortunate events happen, or something comes up, I have my modified homemaking checklist and improved my perspective on the crucial tasks that will keep my home looking tidy and calming. Is there anything else you would add to your homemaking contingency plan?

Hi, I’m Shara

I have a passion for organizing. This stems from being naturally drawn to simplicity and structure in my home. Combined with my desire to help women achieve their goals, Simply Renewed Living was born.


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