A Housekeeping Tip for the Hopelessly Untidy

Tidy your home in half the time with this helpful housekeeping tip! Is anyone else’s home constantly untidy? I love spreadsheets, but my house can look like a tornado hit – shouldn’t it be one or the other? Organized or not?

Apparently not. My closet is beautifully color coded, but my worn clothes end up in a heap on the floor.  I’m at peace when the house is clean, yet I kick off my shoes who-knows-where when I get home. I have a cubby for my phone, but I know for a fact that it’s currently in the kitchen by the dishes.

In short, I have trouble being tidy.

I’ve been this way for as long as I can remember. My junior high homework planners were perfectly organized, yet whenever my best friend Melissa came over, she went straight to my bedroom and closed all my dresser drawers. We’re still friends, and she hasn’t stopped.

But there’s hope!

When I remember this tip, it cuts my tidying time in half! Thank goodness! I’ll take all the help I can get.

So without further ado, here it is:

The Touch-It-Once Tip

Touch it once! 

The touch it once rule has been used for a long time in businesses - now let's bring it to the home! Integrating it into your life will work magic for helping you spend less time tidying. Just touch it once!

If you’re touching something, put it down where it should go so you don’t need to touch it again.

For example, I sort the mail on my way in from the mailbox, and by the time I get into the house, I have a handful of mail that goes immediately into the recycling, and a handful that goes onto my desk.

Before learning this tip, I would toss everything onto the kitchen table, then at dinner time move it from the kitchen table to the counter, then eventually move it from the counter to. . . who knows where. It’d hopefully make it to the desk and recycling sometime – but it’d be a long untidy road to get there.

Much better to just touch it once.

The great thing about this tip is that you can apply it to anything, in any room!

When I’m on my game, here are some ways that I use this tip:

  • Take off shoes, put them immediately on the shoe rack
  • Take off clothes, put them immediately in the hamper
  • Finish meal, put dishes immediately in the sink
  • Brush teeth, put the toothpaste immediately back in the medicine cabinet
  • Use ingredient, put it immediately back in the cupboard
Don’t Overdo It

Careful, though! If you’re like me, you can jump on “new habit” bandwagons pretty aggressively. Don’t throw your life out of whack by militantly adhering to this idea. This is a a helpful tip, not a mandated rule. Don’t overdo it.

There will certainly be times where your clothes just stay where they drop. If your husband is whisking you away (wink, wink) – don’t put the brakes on to toss your jeans in the hamper.

When you’re baking with kiddos, focus on keeping their hands out of the mixer rather than returning the ingredients to the cupboard.

If you’re feeling antsy, maybe leave the dishes on the table and get outside for a walk before sunset.

It’s all about balance!

Being Honest about Tidying

Still, having the words “touch it once” in my head has been a tremendous help for me! I’ve not yet perfected it, but since this this blog is called Wildflowers and Progress not Wildflowers and Perfection, I feel safe inviting you to the journey with me, without having already reached the destination.

Plus, I am making progress toward being more tidy!

I’m proud to say that if Melissa came over right now, she’d have very little to do!

All my dresser drawers are all closed.

. . . At least for the moment.

Tidying can take over your life! With this simple housekeeping tip, though, you can cut your tidying time in HALF!

Are you hopelessly untidy like I am? I'm organized in every other area of my life, but sometimes I just can't get myself to put stuff back where they belong. With this housekeeping tip, with will help you be more tidy and probably cut your tidying tip in half! Wildflowers and Progress blog post. Enjoy!!Are you a naturally tidy person? What do you do to keep your home under control? 

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14 Comments on "A Housekeeping Tip for the Hopelessly Untidy"

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I so needed this tip!! I am horrible at being tidy and this tip may be what saves my house lol


Great tip that I will start utilizing today! I was a naturally tidy person… Before my son that is. Now I find it difficult to keep it tidy with a very rambunctious toddler running around! ? But I’ve not lost the battle yet… This tip will help me lots! Thanks so much!

Blessings, ❤


Terrin Ramsey @ Momblah

ok, i am horribly cluttery. I’m going to try this trick and see how it goes!


Wet well said!


The kitchen is tough for me when it comes to the floors. I feel like I am constantly sweeping.
And keeping up with laundry seems like a nightmare at times. But every once in a while I get a free Sunday to catch up on things.
Needing to follow some of your tips, during the weeks especially, to keep everything more under control.


I am the worlds worst at setting something down in 3-4 places while I’m cleaning before it gets to its home! This is a great tip!


Ugh I’m so good at cleaning up after myself…but you’re right, I need to make sure I don’t overdue it! It’s *okay* if something isn’t exactly where it needs to be every minute of the day! Great thoughts!

Juliette | https://namastaytraveling.com

Kristen Jones

Love these tips! I love having a clean home, but sometimes it gets a little cluttered. These will def help.

Sunburnt Aloe

This is a threat tip. I have a habit of moving things around before finally putting them away. ?


I wish my husband could adopt this rule! I’m going to try it with him!