Morgan, Marcy, Melanie and Marla reveal one rule to clean them all!

ACTION: Adapting CANSAS to Individuals’ Own Needs                                         Recovery Conversation Theme #3 Looking After The Home

By Warren Heggarty 


There are a gazillion expert homemakers on the net who can give you lists of 5, 10, 20 or even 27 rules on how to keep your place clean and tidy. But surely there is a Mum or Dad blogger out there who can achieve it all with only ONE rule to make it simple for us? 

Panorama found two such domestic geniuses: Marcy and Morgan. Here are their secrets… 

• At least once a day, spend at least 15 uninterrupted minutes cleaning (Morgan, 2017) 

• Finish what you start (Marcy, 2018) 

Of course, you can only use one of those rules at a time, because if you run them together you’ll need to finish everything in 15 minutes, increasing the likelihood that you will short-circuit. 

So instead of one RULE, how about one MINUTE? This is what Melanie of Life Hacks suggested: 

“It takes less than a minute to file a bill you just paid, put a read newspaper in the recycling bin, or hang up an article of clothing.” (Pinola, 2012) 

Marla from Real Simple suggests keeping your cleaning supplies on hand all the time so if you need to spring into action for one (or two) minutes of cleaning you don’t waste any precious seconds hunting down sponges or mops or detergent etc (Christiansen, 2018). 

To make this scientific, Panorama collected a set of rules culled from various blogs. We asked our participants to choose one and one only of these tips, the one that would make more difference than any other would. 

1. Make your bed every day 

2. Always load your dishwasher at the end of the day 

3. Tidy bathroom vanity after use 

4. Use organisers and stackable containers for storage 

5. Use baskets and or drawers in your hallway 

6. Have a lightweight vacuum cleaner 

7. Start a system to organise paperwork 8. Empty your bin often 

9. Keep a cleaning cloth in each room 

10. Add indoor plants to your home 

11. Do one load of laundry per day 

12. Be happy with “clean enough” 

13. Prioritize 

14. Get the whole family/household involved 

15. Do a 15-minute nightly clean-up 

16. Never leave a room empty handed (take stuff back to where it belongs) 

17. Declutter 

18. Concentrate on high traffic areas 

19. Clean as you go (Moore, 2018) (Jenn, 2015) 

Of these 19, only four were selected by our voters. The clear winner on 42 per cent was “clean as you go” followed by a three-way tie on 14 per cent each for “do a 15 minute clean every night”, “open the windows and doors”, and “a place for everything”. The remaining two selections (“never leave a room empty handed” and “declutter”) scored below 10 per cent. 

In case you are wondering about opening windows and doors, June explained that you need adequate light and air. Doris echoed this and added that putting on some “boppy” music will help you stage a cleaning blitz. This will be even easier if all of your household items belong a special home of their own, so as not to clutter the place up. 

We received so many great suggestions (about hygiene too!) that we will be following this story up in a future issue of ACTION Recovery Conversations. Readers should not be shy about sharing their own wisdom too, for future issues. 

So, will you clean as you go? It’s up to you, readers, but one thing is sure, when something needs doing, it never hurts to do it here and do it now! 

Thanks to all the Flourish Australia people who took part in our survey. 


Christiansen, M. (2018, August 22). 7 Two-Minute Habits That Will Keep Your Home Cleaner All Week. Retrieved from Real Simple 

Jenn. (2015). 11 daily habits to keep a house clean and tidy. Retrieved from Clean and Scentsible: 

Marcy. (2018, July). 1 rule for keeping your house clean and orderly. Retrieved from Uplifting mayhem 

Moore, D. (2018, May 14). 10 quick house cleaning habits you should be doing every day. Retrieved from Home Beautiful 

Morgan. (2017, July 24). The only rule you need to maintain a tidy home. Retrieved from Morgan Manages Mommyhood 

Pinola, M. (2012, September 29). The one minute rule that will keep your place clutter free. Retrieved from Life Hacks 

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