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10 Surprisingly Dirty Places in Your Home that You Need to Clean Up Now

10 Surprisingly Dirty Places in Your Home that You Need to Clean Up Now

Germs are everywhere, and no matter how clean you think you are, there are still germs all over your home. In order to protect yourself from certain sicknesses, you should clean your home thoroughly, especially in the areas listed below:

1. Door Handles, Knobs, and Light Switches

The other day I was doing a very thorough cleaning of my house, when I came across a very dirty light switch. I don’t know how I missed it all of these times, but when I cleaned it off I was completely shocked. It was like I just inserted a brand new light switch. These areas are places that everyone touches, yet they don’t seem to be cleaned nearly as often as they should.

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2. Clothing Left in the Washing Machine

We’ve all been there: you start washing some of your clothes and then you forget about them. However, if you forget about it for a couple of days, mold could build up. Your wet clothes are a great habitat for germs, so be sure to re-wash them and try again.

3. Personal Items, Such as Remote Controls, Cell Phones and Keyboards

Remote controls, cell phones, and keyboards are all things that you constantly touch with your hands, which are always full of germs. Every now and then you should wipe down these items to help eliminate germs. That said, before you go get all of your electronics wet, make sure that you are cleaning them properly, with the right products.

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4. The Entire Bathroom

Make sure to clean your bathroom (especially your toilet) regularly. Not only is it scary/disgusting to use a bathroom that hasn’t been cleaned in ages, but it is also unsanitary. Whip out your mop and mop the floor, and then whip out your disinfectants and brushes and clean that toilet.

5. The Family/Play Room

One of the most active rooms in your home is most likely the family room or play room. You kick back and relax in these rooms, or rough it up and make a mess. You probably don’t always clean your hands before or after hanging out in this room either, which means that there are a lot of germs. Make sure that you are cleaning these rooms as often as needed, and that you are thoroughly cleaning toys as well.

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6. Your Makeup Bag

My makeup bag is fairly clean, but I know that it could be better. I happened to go through my sister’s makeup bag the other day to find something that I quickly needed and found that it was incredibly dirty. I didn’t even want to dump it on the ground to find what I needed (she told me to just dump it all out), so I had to set a towel down because of how filthy everything was. Clean out your makeup bag and use what you need.

7. Your Kitchen

There are many reasons for why your kitchen is one of the dirtiest places in your home. Your kitchen is home to dirty dishes (which, lets be honest, may pile up every now and then), soiled wash towels, left-over food on the counter and so on. Make sure to wash the sink, any knobs, the faucet, the fridge, the counters and so on.

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8. The Trash Can

This spot in your home is probably pretty obvious. You throw away all sorts of things in your trash can, which can lead to a mess. Make sure that you are carefully places things into your trash can and that nothing falls off to the side, or that the trash bag ever rips.

9. Towels and Dish Rags

Many people re-use rags and towels a couple of times before they wash them, but if these rags or towels have germs on them, then you are most likely just spreading germs around. Make sure that you are using fresh towels when needed.

10. Pet Areas

We all love our pet family members, but they can be dirty. They most likely don’t receive baths as much as humans, and they play outside all day and do all sorts of crazy things while they are out there. Make sure to wash the areas that they sleep or play in, and wash their food bowls as well.

What are you running off to clean first?

More by this author

Michelle S.

Founder of Making Sense of Cents, a blog about personal finance and traveling.

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Last Updated on November 19, 2019

20 Time Management Tips to Super Boost Your Productivity

20 Time Management Tips to Super Boost Your Productivity

Are you usually punctual or late? Do you finish things within the time you stipulate? Do you hand in your reports/work on time? Are you able to accomplish what you want to do before deadlines? Are you a good time manager?

If your answer is “no” to any of the questions above, that means you’re not managing your time as well as you want. Here are 20 time management tips to help you manage time better:

1. Create a Daily Plan

Plan your day before it unfolds. Do it in the morning or even better, the night before you sleep. The plan gives you a good overview of how the day will pan out. That way, you don’t get caught off guard. Your job for the day is to stick to the plan as best as possible.

2. Peg a Time Limit to Each Task

Be clear that you need to finish X task by 10am, Y task by 3pm, and Z item by 5:30pm. This prevents your work from dragging on and eating into time reserved for other activities.

3. Use a Calendar

Having a calendar is the most fundamental step to managing your daily activities. If you use outlook or lotus notes, calendar come as part of your mailing software.

I use it. It’s even better if you can sync your calendar to your mobile phone and other hardwares you use – that way, you can access your schedule no matter where you are. Here’re the 10 Best Calendar Apps to Stay on Track .

Find out more tips about how to use calendar for better time management here: How to Use a Calendar to Create Time and Space

4. Use an Organizer

An organizer helps you to be on top of everything in your life. It’s your central tool to organize information, to-do lists, projects, and other miscellaneous items.

These Top 15 Time Management Apps and Tools can help you organize better, pick one that fits your needs.

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5. Know Your Deadlines

When do you need to finish your tasks? Mark the deadlines out clearly in your calendar and organizer so you know when you need to finish them.

But make sure you don’t make these 10 Common Mistakes When Setting Deadlines.

6. Learn to Say “No”

Don’t take on more than you can handle. For the distractions that come in when you’re doing other things, give a firm no. Or defer it to a later period.

Leo Babauta, the founder of Zen Habits has some great insights on how to say no: The Gentle Art of Saying No

7. Target to Be Early

When you target to be on time, you’ll either be on time or late. Most of the times you’ll be late. However, if you target to be early, you’ll most likely be on time.

For appointments, strive to be early. For your deadlines, submit them earlier than required.

Learn from these tips about how to prepare yourself to be early, instead of just in time.

8. Time Box Your Activities

This means restricting your work to X amount of time. Why time boxing is good for you? Here’re 10 reasons why you should start time-boxing.

You can also read more about how to do time boxing here: #5 of 13 Strategies To Jumpstart Your Productivity.

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9. Have a Clock Visibly Placed Before You

Sometimes we are so engrossed in our work that we lose track of time. Having a huge clock in front of you will keep you aware of the time at the moment.

10. Set Reminders 15 Minutes Before

Most calendars have a reminder function. If you have an important meeting to attend, set that alarm 15 minutes before.

You can learn more about how reminders help you remember everything in this article: The Importance of Reminders (And How to Make a Reminder That Works)

11. Focus

Are you multi-tasking so much that you’re just not getting anything done? If so, focus on just one key task at one time. Multitasking is bad for you.

Close off all the applications you aren’t using. Close off the tabs in your browser that are taking away your attention. Focus solely on what you’re doing. You’ll be more efficient that way.

Lifehack’s CEO has written a definitive guide on how to focus, learn the tips: How to Focus and Maximize Your Productivity (the Definitive Guide)

12. Block out Distractions

What’s distracting you in your work? Instant messages? Phone ringing? Text messages popping in?

I hardly ever use chat nowadays. The only times when I log on is when I’m not intending to do any work. Otherwise it gets very distracting.

When I’m doing important work, I also switch off my phone. Calls during this time are recorded and I contact them afterward if it’s something important. This helps me concentrate better.

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Find more tips on how to minimize distractions to achieve more in How to Minimize Distraction to Get Things Done

13. Track Your Time Spent

When you start to track your time, you’re more aware of how you spend your time. For example, you can set a simple countdown timer to make sure that you finish a task within a period of time, say 30 minutes or 1 hour. The time pressure can push you to stay focused and work more efficiently.

You can find more time tracking apps here and pick one that works for you.

14. Don’t Fuss About Unimportant Details

You’re never get everything done in exactly the way you want. Trying to do so is being ineffective.

Trying to be perfect does you more harm than good, learn here about how perfectionism kills your productivity and how to ditch the perfectionism mindset.

15. Prioritize

Since you can’t do everything, learn to prioritize the important and let go of the rest.

Apply the 80/20 principle which is a key principle in prioritization. You can also take up this technique to prioritize everything on your plate: How to Prioritize Right in 10 Minutes and Work 10X Faster

16. Delegate

If there are things that can be better done by others or things that are not so important, consider delegating. This takes a load off and you can focus on the important tasks.

When you delegate some of your work, you free up your time and achieve more. Learn about how to effectively delegate works in this guide: How to Delegate Work (the Definitive Guide for Successful Leaders)

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17. Batch Similar Tasks Together

For related work, batch them together.

For example, my work can be categorized into these core groups:

  1. writing (articles, my upcoming book)
  2. coaching
  3. workshop development
  4. business development
  5. administrative

I batch all the related tasks together so there’s synergy. If I need to make calls, I allocate a time slot to make all my calls. It really streamlines the process.

18. Eliminate Your Time Wasters

What takes your time away your work? Facebook? Twitter? Email checking? Stop checking them so often.

One thing you can do is make it hard to check them – remove them from your browser quick links / bookmarks and stuff them in a hard to access bookmarks folder. Replace your browser bookmarks with important work-related sites.

While you’ll still checking FB/Twitter no doubt, you’ll find it’s a lower frequency than before.

19. Cut off When You Need To

The number one reason why things overrun is because you don’t cut off when you have to.

Don’t be afraid to intercept in meetings or draw a line to cut-off. Otherwise, there’s never going to be an end and you’ll just eat into the time for later.

20. Leave Buffer Time In-Between

Don’t pack everything closely together. Leave a 5-10 minute buffer time in between each tasks. This helps you wrap up the previous task and start off on the next one.

More Time Management Techniques

Featured photo credit: Unsplash via unsplash.com

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