Airing Your Dirty Laundry
The other day I was thinking back over several of my clients, and one common theme they all shared was not being able to keep a handle on laundry. There were piles of dirty clothes all over the house, clothes piled up by the washing machine, a few baskets full of clean clothes that needed to be folded, and folded clothes not yet put away. Perhaps you can relate.
There are a few ways to tackle laundry problems. The first is just to start. Go put a load in the washer right now! Now that you are back, read on!
Gaining a Laundry Perspective
It may sound strange, but one way to conquer the laundry beast is to get perspective on dirty clothes, washing machines, and dryers. I watched a show on PBS a few years ago about keeping house in the early 1900s, and I have never been so thankful for a washer and dryer!
These people owned two or three outfits, wore them repeatedly, then washed them by hand. You could let doing laundry be a daily irritant, or you could choose to be thankful that you have more than three outfits to even launder, and be thankful for the machines when you realize how much time you save by not having to hand wash and air dry.
Assess Your Laundry Situation
Now that you are grateful, assess your situation.
Is the problem that it takes a long time to sort all your clothes? Then save yourself the time and buy another laundry basket. Have one for darks, and one for whites. When a basket fills up, put it in the washer.
Is the problem forgetting to finish a load? Leave a reminder, like the laundry basket, in the room where you are. When you pass it by, you will remember to change the laundry over.
Is it not having time to fold it? Don’t start the dryer until you are sure you will have time to fold as soon as the dryer stops. If you know that at 9pm you always sit down to watch TV or talk to your spouse, start the dryer at 8:20. The clothes will be done, and you can fold at 9.
Is the problem ironing? Refer to the paragraph above this one. When you fold your clothes right away instead of letting them sit in the dryer, you will drastically reduce the amount of ironing you need to do.
Kids Can Do Laundry
If you have kids or a spouse, enlist help. They produce dirty laundry as well, so they could help with the folding or at least putting clothes away once you have folded them. Kids are able to put clothes away at a young age if you help them at first. As they get the hang of it, let them do it all by themselves. This could even be a chore you pay them to do. They learn responsibility and you save time.
Get Laundry on a Schedule
Finally, consider putting laundry into your schedule. Put a load in the wash before you leave for work each morning, and put it in the dryer when you get home. Doing a little each day will help it from piling up.