The Importance of Housekeeping

It’s easy to overlook the importance of housekeeping. We get so wrapped up in our current projects, and planning for future projects. Doing routine maintenance feels a lot like looking backward. It’s not until we’re up to our elbows in dust and trash, files to be archived and things to be put away, that it becomes a distraction.

Dealing with our immediate environment is being present, though. One of the reasons I’m a minimalist is so that there’s less of that sort of clutter to deal with. Less things to move in order to clean, fewer items to put away, and processes in place to keep things organized as I go along.

Housekeeping is built into my schedule. Doing the dishes and cleaning the kitchen is factored into my lunch and dinner breaks. Putting things away at the end of the work day is in there. Archiving completed projects is included in the project plan. The accounting has to be done at the end of the month. These are just facts of life, like paying rent and doing laundry.

The real importance of daily housekeeping is to keep things at a task level, rather than allowing them to grow into a project. Cleaning as I go along every day means that I don’t have to dedicate a half-day at the end of the week to it. Filing a couple of things now means there’s not a massive stack staring at me. Things undone, especially the things we least like to do, become distractions. I find it’s better to just stay on top of it, and get it over with in small doses, than to procrastinate myself into prolonged misery.

What I’m Up to, Aside from Housekeeping

Current project: Witchfinder Covenant
Reading: The Innovator’s Dilemma, Clayton Christensen
Listening to: Classic British Rock
Watching: The Walking Dead Season 5. This is research for a future project, because gore and torture porn are absolutely not my thing.

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