1. Have an impromptu dance party.
PROBLEM: Cleaning is a drag. I’d rather be in the club.
SOLUTION: Bring the club to you!
HOW TO DO IT: Cleaning can be a bummer. Dancing, however, is not. Shimmy over to your dusty window sills, electric slide to those dirty dishes, and do the running man all across that grimy kitchen tile. Create a playlist of up-tempo tunes that increase in intensity to keep you primed and pumped for chore after chore.
2. Have your pets help out.
PROBLEM: You’d rather be snuggling with your kitty cat.
SOLUTION: Nobody likes to be left out! Get your pets in on the fun.
HOW TO DO IT: Plop your kitty down by your dustpan, or maybe let your pup chase the Swiffer from dusty corner to dusty corner. You might end up with a little bit of extra scruff and stuff to sweep up, but trust us — totally worth it.
3. Catch up on your podcast catalog.
PROBLEM: I’d rather be listening to Radiolab than scrubbing floors.
SOLUTION: Do both at the same time, dummy!
HOW TO DO IT: What better excuse is there to catch up on your to-listen list than when you have a boatload of chores knockin’ on your chamber door? Take a five minute break every time your favorite podcast goes to commercial and you’ve officially killed two birds with one stone.
4. Venture out on an epic quest.
PROBLEM: I’d rather be playing video games.
SOLUTION: Make your housework an epic game of its own.
HOW TO DO IT: Let’s pretend that your apartment isn’t your apartment anymore. It’s a Mystical Fantasy Dungeon, and those tufts of dust lurking in the corners? Goblins. The kitty that keeps getting in the way? A vicious mini-boss. The Swiffer you’re using? A magical sword with a plus-one bonus on “cleaning.” Bring it, dirt.
5. Have a free-throw contest.
PROBLEM: I need to clean, but I don’t wanna miss the game.
SOLUTION: Bring the game to you.
HOW TO DO IT: You know what’s neat about trashcans and laundry hampers? They look an awful lot like basketball goals. Turn laundry and trash duties into a one-person b-ball match — just be sure to get that last sock or soda can into its respective receptacle with a slam dunk worthy of Michael Jordan. The Space Jam soundtrack is, of course, mandatory.
6. Break it down.
PROBLEM: There’s just too much to clean! Everything’s messy and I’m overwhelmed!
SOLUTION: Don’t do it all at once, silly! Ration the workload out.
HOW TO DO IT: Focus on the smaller pieces and spaces — your dusty electronics, then your kitchen countertops, then any stains and spills — and before you know it you’ll have taken care of the big picture in its entirety.
7. Pretend the floor is lava.
PROBLEM: Cleaning is sooooo boring. Sooooo boring.
SOLUTION: Use your imagination to spice it up!
HOW TO DO IT: Bad news: the floor is molten lava now. Good news: all that dirty laundry scattered about is totally flame-proof. Hop from t-shirt to couch to bed to avoid the singeing flames beneath your toes. The floor will only turn back to sweet, stable solid ground once you’ve gotten it spic-and-span.
8. Treat yo’self.
PROBLEM: Why sweep when I can just snack instead?
SOLUTION: Sweep now, and eat treats along the way!
HOW TO DO IT: With Swiffer you can have your snack and eat it too. Why wait until you’re done cleaning? Swiffer is so light, it only takes one hand to clean. You can use your free five fingers to feed yourself treats for each chore you check off your list.
9. Cast yourself on a crazy game show.
PROBLEM: I’d rather watch TV than clean.
SOLUTION: You ARE the TV show, buddy.
HOW TO DO IT: Set a timer on your phone or watch and see how quickly you can accomplish various “events” — The De-Grime Your Bathtub Super Challenge! The Dust-Bust Beneath Your Bed Bonanza! The Corgi Fur Fuzz Vacuum Competition Supreme! — before the clock hits zero. Winner gets a pair of Moon Shoes. Or, you know, the satisfaction of an ultra-clean apartment.
10. Set a human timer.
PROBLEM: I have better things to do with my time than clean.
SOLUTION: Imagine you have a guest coming over — a really important one.
HOW TO DO IT: Give yourself a couple of hours of buffer time, of course, but the knowledge that you’ll soon be playing host/hostess to someone you wanna impress should inspire you to polish your pad with an ineffable resolve.