In support of my previous post, I'm going to show you what I do with my day. 

I am not a super-good housekeeper. My one-bedroom apartment is tolerable to me: the dishes get done after every meal, but I often leave them drying in the dish rack for days. My laundry gets done when I run out of clean undies, and I leave it drying in my office until I get a chance to put it away. My bathroom toilet and sink are clean; the tub is tolerable but could use a good solid scrub, and there's a bit of dust and stuff behind the toilet and the sink pedestal. 

I live alone, with the occasional overnight guest. I have no kids. I have one very fluffy cat.

So that leaves 7.5 hours/week to do some portion of the infrequent chores, spend time with friends, go dancing, knit, visit my grandmom, and deal with the random crap that comes up (making appointments, family crises, helping people with things, domestic occurrences), and maybe do something fun and different. 

And I don't have kids. And I'm fully physically able and psychologically functional. And I don't have an aging parent or spousal equivalent. And I don't really do anything very important. And I work from home, so I can sometimes combine work and other tasks like making a big pot of soup. And I'm still not Martha-ready

Now there are ways in which I could be more efficient. I could take fewer hot baths. I could spend less time preparing food, or do big batches of stuff. I could bake less. I could do yoga at home, rather than in a studio. But that would shave tiny amounts of time off the overall total: in order to live the way I prefer to live, I need to spend about 50 hours a week doing various different work-things. I need to sleep about 8 hours/night. I need to eat well, and I need to keep my apartment relatively tidy. And baking keeps me sane. 

My point is not that I could organize my time better, though that's undoubtedly true. My point is that all the things I do have a time-cost, and that in order to do something else, I need to acknowledge the time-cost, and trade things off accordingly. 
Footnotes )

 Welcome everyone to my new life-management series. I intend to periodically, as time allows, explain why many of us feel inadequate most of the time. Today's topic is housekeeping. 

Did you know that six hours of housework per day may reduce your risk of breast cancer? It will also result in your having all the laundry done and folded, the carpets vacuumed, the floors mopped and polished, the counters wiped, the things dusted, the spices alphabetized, the oven cleaned, the grout de-gunked, and the ironing done. With six hours of housework per day, you could actually go to sleep in your nicely aired, laundered linens, and sleep the sleep of the houseproud, secure in the knowledge that should Martha Steward or your mother drop in all will be perfect and that you're less likely to get breast cancer than that slattern down the street who doesn't iron her sheets.

So what about that, ladies? Why aren't you scrubbing the toilet with an old toothbrush right the heck now? 

Oh right: you have other things to do

Seriously? Who has SIX HOURS a day to spend on housework? 

Now answer me honestly: how many of you have an extra hour in the day? If the hour-fairy came along and said "Here's an hour for free! Do whatever you want with it!" would you really want to clean the scudge from behind the toilet? If you would, great! Chances are you have a cleaner home than I do. 

Housekeeping is work. It takes time, and for most people, it's not much fun. Most of us have other things that we do in our day that are also not much fun: sometimes we get paid for these things. 

Cut because seriously, who has time to scroll?  )


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