Managing a family and organization are two of the most daunting parts of being a mother. When it comes down to it, being pregnant for what feels like forever, dealing with an ongoing cycle of breastfeeding, potty training, and terrible twos and threes, these things aren’t nearly as overwhelming as trying to figure out how to organize a household and run it efficiently.
Home management is kind of my specialty, but I’m just going to be perfectly honest with you right now. My house does NOT look like a page out of IKEA or the Container Store. It’s not super-hyper organized with everything labeled and perpetually in it’s own place.
My home is a living, breathing place that is filled with love and chaos, and inevitable mess. However, because I have spent so much time (years and years and years) of managing everything, I have so many household hacks at my disposal! I know how to quickly whip everything back into ship-shape in hardly any time at all (and I do this several times throughout the day).
And that’s what I would like to share with you today. Managing a home is a BIG job. And some days it CAN feel overwhelming, but we all have to start somewhere…
How to Organize a Household
It’s SO important to have a game plan any time you are getting ready to take on a massive project. I can’t imagine a more massive project than figuring out how to organize a household, can you? You aren’t going to get very far at all if you are approaching household organization randomly.
I like to call this the Three Pillars of Household Organization.
The first place you need to start is with a big decluttering session.
Once you are starting to get rid of all of the unnecessary stuff in your home, managing everything will be easier. It’s like starting with a clean slate. Don’t wait to start working on these other areas until your home is perfectly decluttered though.
Let me tell you a little secret. I am never done decluttering. There is always more! Keep going!
After you have started decluttering, there is another big area that you will need to start chipping away at…
Meal planning is one of those make or break activities for managing a large family. If you aren’t doing it regularly, then you are never really sure what you are going to be serving for meals. If you don’t know what you are serving, then you are not managing your home well.
I’m sure this sounds harsh, but let me back up just a step. I’m not telling you that you need to serve homemade meals from scratch with only organic ingredients every night. I’m not telling you that, because I don’t do that either.
What I’m telling you is that you need to KNOW what you are serving. Even if you need to get take-out every night of the week for whatever reason (and I can think of PLENTY of reasons why you may need to do this!), I would encourage you to still have a plan for that.
So your plan could look something like this:
Monday- Take-out pizza
Tuesday- Taco night
Wednesday- Crockpot Chicken something or other
Friday- Freezer lasagna
So, have a meal plan, and then stick to it! If you need some help in this area, check out Kitchen Domination.
The third pillar of Household Organization is…
I think I just heard a collective groan. I know, I know. Laundry can get oppressive, and it can get oppressive REAL fast.
Just remember, the sooner you have a workable plan for keeping your laundry under control, the sooner you will be on your way to really managing your home well.
Household Organization Tips and Ideas
- Start working today on getting the three pillars of Household Organization under control (decluttering, meal planning, laundry). Work on these three pillars every day.
- Recognize there are seasons to motherhood. In the middle of morning sickness, or during those early newborn days are not the time to start an overhaul.
- Your children are more capable of helping than they let on. Teach them well and then inspect their work (I’ve actually started assigning a few of my older children to be inspectors, and this works SO WELL). If you need help getting your children doing chores, check out my Chore System.
- Don’t turn into a housekeeping shrew. Recognize that a family home is never going to be perfect, and if you ever get it to that point, it will not last long. Don’t make everyone miserable trying to attain perfection.
- Don’t give up. The worst thing that you can do when trying to figure out how to manage a family is to give up. You’ll have good days and bad days, learn to roll with it.