Household Chores Checklist
Use One To Save Your Marriage
By Colleen Langenfeld
Are you tired of fighting with your spouse over who-does-what chore every night after work?
Or has it gone farther than that and you have stopped talking about household stuff altogether in your marriage?
This is a hot issue in today's fast-paced culture. We've added a lot to our lives over the past generation but many of our tasks remain the same. No matter how many interesting opportunities come along, the house still has to be cleaned, the dishes still must be done and the laundry still needs to be kept up with (although I'm not sure it needs to be folded!).
Many people use a checklist system at their jobs to keep on task and stay productive. Why not use the same thinking at home with your household chores?
-- Use a household chores checklist to maintain division of work.
* He fills and empties the dishwasher on Tuesday and Thursday and she takes care of it on Monday and Wednesday. Weekends they use paper and plastic and forget they have a dishwasher.
* She sorts and assembles laundry throughout the week into multiple hampers and when he spots a full hamper due to her efforts he sends that load through the washer and dryer. They fold together, right before bed.
* She is responsible for dinners three times a week and he is responsible three times a week. The seventh night they figure out dinner together, whether it's snacking or a restaurant. Each Sunday evening they look at the household checklist together and choose the nights that work best that week for each of them.
All of the above is kept track of on the chores checklist. Slip it into a plastic sleeve and use a dry-erase marker so you can wipe it clean each week and begin again with ease.
-- Use a household chores checklist as a log of actual work completed.
If there's an argument in your home over who is actually doing the most work, use a household checklist to discover the facts. Simply jot down who does what for a solid month. Put dates and times, too. Then you can tally up the clear winner.
But be gentle. Sometimes seeing the 'truth' can be a real shocker. It's a little like discovering you overeat by a thousand calories a day when you genuinely believed you were eating sensibly.
-- Make household chores a game.
Attach some real prizes to your household chores checklist and see if you can motivate both of you to get on top of the daily household duties. Make a big deal about checking things off the list.
Really, this is about developing habits as everything is more difficult when you're not used to doing it. But get in a groove with an activity and it's no big deal at all.
Without a doubt, the most efficient way to handle your household chores is to make them a habit. Instead of spending the energy arguing about it, why not use that same energy to see if the chores can be streamlined and shortened. Are there tools or resources that would help both of you get the job done better and faster? Then seriously consider those helps. And remember, your upfront costs need to be weighed against your long term gain.
Do yourself a favor and get really tired of arguing about this common marital frustration and use simple tools like a household chores checklist to develop a system that will finally work in your situation.
At the very least, you'll learn methods of becoming more efficient yourself and that will help you get your part done faster. If both spouses give this a try the benefits can be amazing.
About the Author: Colleen Langenfeld has been parenting for over 26 years and helps other moms enjoy mothering more at
http://www.paintedgold.com . Visit her website and print out a free household chores checklist today.