Summer is winding down, and the kids are on their way back to school. At this time of year, I look forward to having a more structured day for me and the kids, with fewer demands on finding child care or running to activities. However, the school year brings more challenges. Things around our home are pretty care free during the summer but without good routines during the school year, my home ends up in shambles. Working away from home doesn’t always leave much time for housework amidst the other activities that are occurring. Here are five tips to make this task a little easier.
1- Let the Guilt Go
This might be the most important tip. I now realize I can’t do everything, and I accept this. I put so much guilt on myself to keep the house clean, cook fabulous meals, and be the perfect mom/wife that I can’t tell you how many times I wound up in tears. Your house doesn’t have to be spotless, and at the end of the day those extra 15 minutes spent cuddling with your child are way more meaningful than clean floorboards.
It’s important to realize what the important chores are. A good technique is to sit down with your spouse and talk about what is important to him and what is important to you. Maybe you’ve been dusting daily because you felt it was something you both valued, but you might realize in fact it’s low on the priority list. Once this list is made, decide who will take care of which tasks and then fit in the lower priority items when you can.
The list you made in Step 2 – time to get it out again. Getting everyone involved in caring for the home is incredibly important. Even the youngest children can do small tasks to help out. We know that it is part of the Sunnah that the Prophet Muhammed, peace and blessings be upon him, helped his wives in the home whenever possible. When both adult family members are working outside the home, it is important that everyone is contributing inside the home as well.
4- Hire Some Help
This might be a last resort and many people do not feel this is an expense they can afford or justify. That being said, when the time and energy you spend cleaning is calculated, is it really that much? Would you rather have that extra time to spend with your family or rest a bit? Having someone who comes in once a month or every two weeks to do the heavy cleaning could mean a lot less stress!
5- Make Du’a
Ask Allah subhan-Allah wa-ta’ala to help you, grant you patience when given a trial, and give you energy to complete the tasks you have at hand. Remember all of your hardwork is sadaqah, so don’t feel it’s simply a mundane task. When you get overwhelmed, take a few moments and ask for Allah’s help and guidance to complete your duties.
Do you have chores that you can never seem to fit in? What other hints or tips do you have to help with housework?
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