I Have No Energy to Clean My House
Growing up, my mom was a cleaning machine. I wouldn’t say she was a neat freak, but the house was always picked up and vacuumed every week. There were never dishes in the sink. The toilets were always sparkling and the showers were scrubbed. Before I was around, Mom lived on military base housing through the 70s, and would shudder thinking back on the “white glove test”. Officers would come into my parents home about once a month with a white gloved hand. They would run their gloved fingers along all the surfaces to ensure it was clean. Failing a home cleaning test wasn’t an option no matter your situation.
There are so many expectations in the world over what your home should look like. Social media is full of images of crisp white rooms with no clutter and everything in its spot. Once I moved out onto my own I quickly realized how incredibly hard it is to maintain a home. There is no way I would ever pass a white glove test.
Enter chronic illness into the mix. The fatigue can be debilitating for some people with various forms of chronic illness like POTS (postural orthostatic tachycardia syndrome), Ehlers-Danlos Syndrome (EDS), and other forms of dysautonomia. If you fall into one of those categories, you may be thinking to yourself, “I have no energy to clean my house. I’m too fatigued.”
10 Tips on Cleaning When You’re Too Fatigued
- Let go of unneeded items. Purge your belongings. Take inventory of the items you have and purge as you go. I keep an old amazon box in my garage. When I see something that I don’t need anymore I make sure it gets in my donation box. Not needing to clean those items can help keep your home feeling more tidy.
- Do a small amount each day. If you have the energy, do a small task that day. Just 5 or 10 minutes will accomplish more than you thought possible.
- Take a seat. When possible, clean sitting down. Grab a stool or pull up some floor.
- Use the right tools. Don’t make the jobs harder on you than you need them to. Having the correct tools can make a big difference.
- Have designated spots for everything. Add little baskets around your home to store loose items in. Are there toys you’re picking up all the time? Maybe your bathroom storage closet could use some TLC? Determining where things go can help you live more clutter free which in the long run will mean you’re spending less time picking things up.
- Hydrate. Could your fatigue be from lack of hydration? NormaLyte has given back the independence of many people with chronic illnesses. We cannot tell you how many people say they were able to do common household chores after hydrating with our electrolyte sticks. Claim your free sample here.
- Don’t put it down, put it away. This rule is the most simple for keeping your home tidy, but it’s also not the easiest for someone who may already be low on energy levels. Sometimes it’s just easier to just put it down - especially if you have to walk across the room to put it away. Making an effort to put it away will help you have less stress over the cleanliness of your home in the long run.
- Make a list. There’s no greater feeling than crossing something off your to do list. Making a list of chores can help you figure out what is most and least important to you as far as cleaning.
- Ask for help. Is there someone around who would be willing to do a small chore for you? Maybe a parent, spouse, or even a child? Swallow your pride, find your voice, and flat out tell someone what you might need. People often want to be needed. Find that friend or loved one who is willing to jump in to support you.
- Be consistent. Consistency is key to so many things in life. Try to make a schedule for what you want to get done on certain days. If you’re not able to do it, that’s okay. But putting in your mind that, for instance, Tuesdays are for laundry (and tacos, obvi) will help you establish a routine that the rest of the house will be able to pick up on.
Our biggest tip? Let go of perfection. It may be hard to accept that your home won’t be exactly as you envisioned it. That’s okay. Learn to accept it may not be perfect.
Our second biggest tip? Grace. Give yourself some grace. You’re not being lazy, you’re chronically ill. Life may not be the same for you as it will be for someone else. Which, in turn, also means that a clean home may not be something you should have on the top of your priority list. Extend yourself some forgiveness, grace, and recognition that you’re doing a great job at managing your life even if your home isn’t the tidiest.
Life is more than a clean house.