Who Said? Challenging the Expected Norms of Housekeeping

When it comes to housekeeping, we’ve all heard the same adages: “Clean the bathroom every week,” “Change the bed sheets every week,” and a myriad of other “shoulds” and “musts” that dictate our household chores. But who said we have to adhere to these norms unquestioningly? What if we challenge the conventional wisdom and chart our course for housekeeping based on our unique circumstances and abilities?

Housekeeping is not a one-size-fits-all endeavor. It’s a highly individualised task that should be tailored to your family’s needs, your schedule, and your other commitments. Let’s explore why it’s perfectly acceptable to break away from the standard expectations and embrace a more flexible and realistic approach to housekeeping.

Daily Tasks: Choose What Matters Most

The daily tasks of housekeeping can be overwhelming, especially if you’re trying to meet someone else’s expectations. Instead of aiming for perfection, focus on what truly matters. For example:

  1. Dishes: Instead of washing dishes immediately after every meal, consider doing them once a day or even every other day. Use a dishwasher if you have one, and avoid letting guilt creep in if you skip a day.
  2. Sweeping and Vacuuming: If you have young children or pets, daily sweeping or vacuuming may be necessary. However, if your home is relatively clean, a few times a week may suffice.
  3. Clutter Control: Make it a habit to tidy up regularly. A few minutes of decluttering each day can prevent chaos from accumulating.
  4. Laundry: Sort laundry by necessity rather than following a strict schedule. Clothes that are visibly dirty or smelly should take priority, while items like jeans or pajamas can wait.

Weekly Tasks: Find Your Comfort Zone

Weekly tasks like bathroom cleaning and changing bed sheets can be adjusted to your comfort level. Here’s how you can approach them:

  1. Bathroom Cleaning: Instead of a weekly deep clean, consider doing a light surface clean during the week and a more thorough clean once or twice a month. This way, you maintain a baseline of cleanliness without excessive effort.
  2. Bed Sheets: The one-size-fits-all rule of changing bed sheets every week isn’t carved in stone. Assess your family’s needs. If sheets are visibly soiled or you have allergies, stick to a weekly change. If not, every two weeks or even once a month may suffice.
  3. Deep Cleaning: Save deep cleaning tasks, like dusting, mopping, or vacuuming under furniture, for when you have the time and energy. Don’t feel pressured to do it all in one day.

Customising Based on Commitments

Housekeeping should adapt to your life, not the other way around. If you have commitments like caring for family members or a demanding job, prioritise accordingly:

  1. Family Care: Caring for loved ones is a noble and time-consuming commitment. Adjust your housekeeping routine to fit their needs. It’s okay if some tasks slide temporarily.
  2. Work Demands: When work gets hectic, consider simplifying your housekeeping routine temporarily. Order takeout or simplify meals, and enlist family members to help with chores.
  3. Personal Well-being: Don’t forget about your well-being. Sometimes, it’s essential to prioritise self-care over a perfectly tidy home.

The key to housekeeping is finding a balance that works for you and your family. Challenge the norms and expectations that don’t align with your reality. Focus on maintaining a clean and comfortable living space that suits your unique circumstances, abilities, and time availability. Remember, a happy, stress-free home is more important than meeting rigid housekeeping standards. So, who said you can’t redefine housekeeping on your terms? It’s time to do what’s right and achievable for your family.


Don’t be afraid to challenge the traditional housekeeping norms and create a customised approach that works for you.


It’s not too hard when you take the steps to redefine housekeeping based on your needs and circumstances.

I’d love you to share this blog with others who may benefit from improving their approach to housekeeping. You can also reach out to me at info@spaceandtime.au to discuss how we can work together to make your life simpler and more organised.