Laundry! For many people, this is a bad word, right up there with "dishes" and "yard work." It's hard to get motivated to do certain chores, and laundry always seems to be one of them. Perhaps because it takes so much time start to finish while you're stuck at home waiting for the load to run, or because it's just so annoying to fold all of the clean clothes and do the ironing.
There are four simple tips that may help you find your motivation to do laundry. I used to be the absolute worst about doing laundry when I was in college (No clean shirts? I'll just go to class with my sweatshirt zipped all the way up). These have all worked for me in the past, and some may hopefully help our readers, as well!
Tip One: Keep the laundry room clean. I know I'm always reluctant to use or walk in a dirty room. Not only does it remind me that cleaning it is on my To Do List, but it's just uncomfortable to work in a room with clutter and too little space. So instead of closing the door to hide the mess while thinking, I have to clean this room before I can do laundry. I'll put it out of my sight and do it later, do some simple things to keep the laundry room in good shape.
1. Get some nice divided laundry baskets. Let yourself splurge on this one. Usually three is a good number- one for darks, one for lights, and the last for whites. Dividing the laundry right away into these three baskets makes it easy to throw a load in the washer later. Many stores have some really cute baskets. For rooms with less space, look into space saver baskets that can hang on the wall, or that you can slip into a cupboard. Having baskets you love will encourage you to use them, and will keep the dirty clothes where they need to be- hidden in the baskets instead of on your bathroom floor.
2. Look into a built in ironing center. It's annoying to have the ironing board propped up against a wall, falling over and getting in the way. The ironing board likes to fall over a lot, and I'm pretty sure my toes are not happy about it. An ironing center is a slim cabinet that installs on the wall, and an ironing board folds down and swivels when you open it. When you're finished, fold it up, close the door, and voila! Hidden away, and no more toe squishes. There are also spots to store an iron, starch, spray bottle, etc. Not only do ironing centers save a lot of space and keep those ironing tools organized, but it also looks nicer to have all of the ironing gear hidden away.
Tip Two: Keep your closet organized. How many times have you done laundry and left the clean clothes in the baskets because you couldn't put them away? Everyone has done it, so don't beat yourself up. I know that it can be really hard to find enough space to put clean clothes if the closet is a mess, or there isn't enough space for them. I have preached this same thing a couple of times before, but closet organizers are your best friend! Get some hanging shelves, a bar extender, a shoe rack, whatever you need to expand the space and utilize all of your closet. Declutter! It's easier than you think! Also, put out of season clothing items into storage. Not only will you have a place for your clean clothes, but your bedroom will be better because of it.
Tip Three: Folding laundry can be a reward! There is another culprit behind leaving clean clothes in the hamper- folding it. It seems like it takes forever and is a boring task. I'll tell you a secret; this is my favorite chore. I bring the clean clothes out into the living room, plop them right out in front of the couch, and turn on the TV. It's the only chore where I feel productive while sitting down and watching TV. It also makes the folding go a lot faster. Usually one 20 minute episode gets me through all three baskets of clean clothes. Find something you enjoy, like music, a movie, or TV show, and put it on while folding. I think you'll soon find that this tail end of laundry day is a lot better than it used to be. Plus, this multitasking will let you catch up on the latest episode so no one can spoil it for you. Super important, right?
Tip Four: Find detergent that makes your laundry smell wonderful. I am not sure if there is a better feeling in the world than climbing into bed with freshly laundered sheets, or drying off with fluffy towels after a shower. Invest in some great soap that you love. Usually cheaper detergents don't clean as well, and can leave clothes smelling a little dingy or mildewy. I personally choose Arm and Hammer detergent. It smells amazing, cleans very well, and is good for sensitive skin. (A 120 load box of powder at Costco is less than $20. I like the powder because I hate having to clean the cup from the liquid after each load, but the liquid works just as well). Believe me, having that sensory reward will help motivate you to want to start your laundry for the day.
Good luck, Laundryteers! If you have any more tips or motivators to share, leave them in the comments! Now, stop doing the Sniff Test to the clothes sitting on the floor, and get working!