The FlyLady | Why is my house messy?

The FlyLady | Why is my house messy?

Do you want to why our homes get messy? This answer is going to change your life. Many years ago when I was first getting organized, I decided to have our big holiday celebration at our house. Having those words come out of my mouth scared me to death. I had been developing my habits and building my routines for several months. Even though the clutter was leaving, I was still afraid to let anyone into my home without notice. There was one habit that was missing. 

I decided to crisis clean like I had always done to get ready for a party or book group. Except this time I did it two weeks before the party. This would give me plenty of time to cook and decorate the house. The only problem was we live in our house, and it was not going to stay clean. I would have to crisis clean all over again the day before our family arrived. How could I cook and clean at the same time? That is when I ask a dear friend who is born-organized how she keeps her house clean all the time.

She turned to me with a puzzled look as if to say why don’t you know this and said very matter-of-factly, “Marla, you just have to pick up after yourself!” Well, for me, that was one of those light-bulb moments! She continued telling me how she keeps her house clean. “If you get it out, then put it away when you finish with it!” Could it really be that simple!

I went home that day and made a conscious effort to put things away when I had finished with them. By this time my clutter was gone, I had a place for everything and my hot spots were no longer an inferno. When anything was out, I could tell it immediately.

When we get sidetracked, we leave a path of items we have left out. Let me walk you through a day in the life of a Sidetracked Home Executive. We get up late and start rushing to get ready. Our bed is left in shambles from a fitful night’s sleep because we have been worrying about things we have no control over. We pull all our makeup out to fix our face and don’t bother putting it away when we are finished because we don’t have time. Then we run to the kitchen to make coffee and grab something for breakfast. All of that gets left out too! You fix your lunch and leave out those things.

So if you started with a clean kitchen now the counters are full and the dishwasher needs emptied. You don’t have time to empty the dishwasher so you leave plates and bowls in the sink or on the table. Do you see the trail that you have left in your wake? Someone could literally follow your path of destruction. I don’t have time is just an excuse to not pick up after yourself. The truth is that we don’t really want to pick up after ourselves. Why do we do this to ourselves? It is our home! We deserve to live in a house that blesses us!

We have to be firm with ourselves! If you will just put things away when you get them out then your home will be only 15 minutes away from clean at any one time! You can do this! I did!
For more help getting rid of your CHAOS, check out Marla Cilley’s website and join her free mentoring group at, listen to her show, or read her books, Sink Reflections, published by Bantam, and her New York Times bestselling book, Body Clutter, published by Fireside. Copyright 2008 Marla Cilley. Used by permission in this publication.



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