“Men often fantasize about a home life free of stress and worry. After work each day, his wife greets him lovingly at the door and his well-behaved children are also glad to see him. He enters the comfort of a well-maintained home as his wife urges him to relax before taking part in dinner, the aroma of which he can already smell wafting through the air.
Conversation at dinner is enjoyable and free of conflict. Later the family goes out together for an early evening stroll, and he returns to put the children to bed with no hassle or fuss. Then he and his wife relax and talk together, watch a little television, and go to bed to make love, all at a reasonable hour.”
I know what you’re thinking… yea, right! In all the marriage advice and books I’ve ever read (and I worked in a bookstore the first year of our marriage, so I had total access to the entire marriage section… it was a bookworm’s dream job), I’ve always seen this repeated that it seems that most men truly desire a tranquil home. Women do to, but somehow it seems to be less of a need for us.
Having a peaceful, calm, clean home is usually vital to a man’s happiness in marriage, but how most families are two-parent working homes, finding the time to create that kind of tranquil environment can be extremely difficult!
Here are some ideas I’ve found to be helpful to me personally:
- Divide up the household chores among the two of you where you each assume tasks that you’d actually enjoy doing. A good rule of thumb is to pick the things that drive you crazy when they aren’t done – assume responsibility for those tasks yourself, things you don’t mind doing, or want done in a certain way.
- Enlist the help of your children when they are old enough and for age-appropriate tasks.
- Take time to fully organize sections of the house one-by-one if you haven’t already. Organize into 3 piles: throw away, donate, keep. The “keep” items need to be put into a place that will be their permanent home in the house – everything needs a place in order to keep the house tranquil and clean.
- Once organized, take time each day before dinner to do a quick 15 minute tidy-up. This really works for us and my son even joins in putting away all the toys he got out that day, making his play room look well-kept and just as it did before the day started.
- Use just one day out of the week to do the sweeping/mopping & bathroom cleaning – blast some fun crazy music & use the list of divided chores helps you both to get through it faster and while having fun even!
Of course, it’s not always possible to keep to any rules of housekeeping… some weekends are busier than others, if your children are involved in sports or other activities, you might be away from home too often to keep the house up. Go easy on yourself and make little changes at first, but don’t underestimate the peaceful beauty that is relaxing in your clean well-kept home 🙂 It is supposedly better for your emotional health, heart-rate, and overall sense of tranquility.
(quote from His Needs Her Needs by Dr. Willard F. Harley)