When it comes to housekeeping, I will be the first to admit that I am not perfect. I’m not a particularly messy person, but I do sometimes find it very difficult to stick to a weekly cleaning schedule. Like so many other people, I’ve tried to follow multiple “cleaning systems” recommended by people on Pinterest, only to feel like a failure because I couldn’t manage to follow them for more than a few days. I even tried reading Marie Kondo’s The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up, and actively attempted to Konmari my home…and found that I couldn’t get past the first stage of the process.
The truth is, not all cleaning systems work for everyone, and sometimes it takes time and effort to find something that works.
This week, I finally found what I was looking for when I had the chance to read Unf*ck Your Habitat: You’re Better Than Your Mess, by Rachel Hoffman.
“Remember, flexible and adaptable for your life; that’s our goal.”Unf*ck Your Habitat, by Rachel Hoffman (page 26)
Unf*ck Your Habitat is a book that really meets people where they are, and focuses on giving them the tools and encouragement they need to begin making changes to improve their environment. Rather than advocating for massive cleaning marathons and drastic organizational changes, Hoffman recommends the much more manageable 20/10 approach, where you work for 20 minutes, followed by a mandatory 10 minute break. She also encourages readers to focus on realistic goals, working toward making our homes “good enough,” rather than chasing (and failing to achieve) perfection (49).
In addition to giving some concrete advice regarding cleaning and organizing in your home, the author also discusses how to deal with messes created by roommates and significant others, how to ask for help when you just can’t manage on your own, recommendations for people who are moving, and how you can use the 20/10 approach to deal with your digital environment and school/work-related projects.
I found the ideas in Unf*ck Your Habitat extremely helpful, but what I most admired about the book was the fact that Hoffman makes a point of acknowledging that our mental and physical health affects our ability to deal with our messes. Reading this book was a very empowering experience for me, and I’m already beginning to put many of Hoffman’s suggestions into action.
If you’ve been having difficulty finding a method of dealing with your housekeeping, I highly recommend taking the time to read Unf*ck Your Habitat. In addition to reading the book, you can also find great cleaning tips, mini-challenges, and resources on the Unf*ck Your Habitat website. You can also follow the website’s Twitter account @TeamUfYH. If you have the opportunity to read the book, I hope you find it as helpful as I did.