A Messy Home Is Not A Refection Of Your Personality!

We have all been through that panic when we expect guests over. We fret over little things: the dust under the sofa, the dog hair or the pile of unfolded clothes on the bed. Yet, do we remember any of these things when we visit those we love.

“You are not a failure because you can’t keep up with laundry. Laundry is morally neutral.”
― 
KC Davis, How to Keep House While Drowning: 31 Days of Compassionate Help

A few months ago, my mother and I were chatting over the phone. I told her that we were having people over and that I had to clean the house. I told her that I always felt judged in such situations.

My mother said, ‘Well, are they visiting you or your home?’

Indeed!

Her statement suddenly made things so much clearer, just like they always do. I admired her courage in saying the exact thing that I wanted to say, but felt guilty about admitting, either to myself or aloud.

We have all been through that panic when we expect guests over. We fret over little things: the dust under the sofa, the dog hair or the pile of unfolded clothes on the bed.

Yet, do we remember any of these things when we visit those we love?

No!

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We only think of those lovely moments spent together, the taste of the food served and how lovely it felt to pet their dog. Why do we, then, see our house as an extension of ourselves and aim for perfection, knowing perfectly well that it doesn’t exist?

State of your home doesn’t reflect your personality

Contrary to popular belief, the state of your home is not a reflection of your personality. It took me many years to understand, and I sincerely hope I’ve learnt it for good.

Life events like marriage, death, financial stress, birth of a child, conditions like depression or physical ailments like arthritis can make it extremely difficult to keep a clean home.

While many of can afford help, those who cannot should not treat it as a personal failing.

Think of it, when you think of a loving grandmother, do you think of the state of her home or the seemingly infinite love she had for you? A house is just bricks and mortar, it’s the people within that make it a home.

Keeping a clean home should help you live your life better, not because someone else will like it that way. Home organization and upkeep should work for those who live in it, not for those who visit once in a while.

Beauty is subjective

We all have different perspectives on beauty and life, so why should it be any different for houses? Women should not feel pressured to have a certain standard of cleanliness, dictated by someone else.

A few cobwebs here and there do not make me feel less than as a homemaker.

A disorganized drawer is not the end of the world, and it’s not a matter of shame. It will get organized, just like order is born from chaos, every day.

I highly recommend reading ‘Keeping Home While Drowning’, a book by K C Davis. The book reminds you of the basic fact that ‘You don\’t work for your home, your home works for you’. True, isn’t it?

It is important to find systems that work for the people who live in the house. Clean your house if you feel like, but do it, so you feel good. Do it to live in a decluttered space that brings YOU peace of mind. Do it to feel good about the space you inhabit.

If you want your guests to sleep on freshly laundered sheets, remind yourself that it’s that intention of yours to make them comfortable that makes you special, not the sheets!

If you didn’t get the time to do that because you were working or your baby was crying, give yourself a break. You don’t have to apologize profusely for the state of your home at the doorway.

Like I said, your intention matters! If your guest cannot be gracious about it, remind yourself of what my mother said. It works like a charm. Every single time.

Image source: Valereii Apetroaiei via Getty Images, free on Canva Pro

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About the Author

Vaidehi Sriram

Vaidehi is a teacher and mentor who is extremely passionate about pedagogy, writing and the arts. read more...

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