Assign It A Day and Move On

This is the least original cleaning advice ever, but it took me at least 10 years of being a “real grownup” before I tried following it. I wish I’d started doing this when I was 20, because I know for sure I’d have more money and be farther along in my career if I hadn’t wasted so much mental energy on my to do lists. 

Watering Wednesday: My houseplants are thriving now that I never forget to water them, since watering is just a Wednesday thing.

Okay, maybe that’s a bit extreme. I use my to do lists as aggression reducers and anxiety checkers. So they’re useful. But sometimes maintaining the sheer volume of lists in my life takes time. 

Recently though, I assigned days to a few tasks. I did it because I found my work from home Mondays were being jam packed with household tasks to the detriment of career tasks, and this was giving me all kinds of stress even though literally nothing I was doing on Mondays had to be done that day. It was like a perverse procrastination, where rather than starting on the business of the week I pretended for the first half of Monday to be a domestic goddess, and by the second half of the day I was a frustrated and way behind modern career woman. 

I stopped trying to do everything on Monday morning, and assigned all the different tasks to different days. I made Sundays sheet day, because is there anything better than getting into clean sheets? Sunday nights need all the help they can get. This helps. 

Mondays became towel and toilet cleaning days. Wednesdays I water all the plants. 

That’s it? That’s the innovation? But it’s so… simple. 

It is. And for months, not a single of these tasks has given me even an eyeroll. 

I wish I could assign all the unpleasant tasks in my life a day and forget it. 

Set it and forget it… finances! Set it and forget it… COVID! Set it and forget it… career satisfaction!


Alicia Amling View All →

Recovering journalist who discovered a life outside of news leaves you time for things like getting angry, cooking and traveling. Plus, hopefully, writing. I’m a wife, dog mom and Washingtonian.

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