One of the worst things about being a “grown-up” is the chores. Laundry, grocery shopping, mowing, cleaning the toilets, washing the floors, vacuuming. Enough already! The list is endless and there’s no motivation of getting that ever sought-after allowance at the end of the week (even if it was only a shiny quarter). With life being so demanding, when left with the choice of your chance for some much needed downtime/playtime, it’s painful to have to do chores instead. That’s where Adultitis pops up. You’re left with resentment, anger, and feelings of overwhelm. That’s no way to live, but someone’s got to get the tasks done.
I believe that we were put on this earth with special talents and interests unique to us. What you’re good at and enjoy is most likely the complete opposite of your neighbor. We all need each other in order to enjoy this journey. God made it that way. If you’re one of those “island dwellers” who prefers to do it all on your own, please prepare for the reality that you will be a stressed-out mess. Life is meant to be lived together, helping and loving each other along the way. With this in mind, here are my 5 ways to stop doing the chores you hate…
1. I’ll Trade Ya
We did this all of the time as kids. Bargaining, trading, swapping. It was a part of everyday life. I despise grocery shopping. Jason cannot stand yard work. I don’t mind yard work. He actually enjoys grocery shopping. It’s not rocket science, but it’s been a miraculous trade. Talk to your spouse, or those in your household, and find out what everyone hates to do, can tolerate and what chore they actually enjoy. These conversations will sure mix things up for the good.
2. Firehouse Feasts
When you cook for a firehouse, you make BIG portions. Partner up with another household or two (or three) and come up with some firehouse dishes that you all enjoy. Agree to divide and conquer by each taking a dish, making enough for each household and then sharing it. Wouldn’t you like to start a busy week with three meals in your fridge, and all you had to do was cook one big meal? Seems like a no-brainer to me.
3. You’re Hired
There will always be those chores that you end up doing “rock, paper, scissors” over. Identify the chore that induces Adultitis the most and hire it out. Get a neighbor kid to rake your leaves or ask a money hungry college student to clean your house every other week. If grocery shopping drives you crazy see if Peapod delivers to you. If you find yourself strapped for cash, give up something else in order to alleviate this Adultitis-ridden chore from your life. Let go of expanded cable or that extra meal out. There’s always something that can be cut.
We all go through seasons in our lives when you simply need to ask for help. Maybe you just picked up a second job to make ends meet, your dad needs extra help getting back and forth to his medical treatments, or your family just welcomed a little baby and you are getting zero sleep. Whatever it is, it’s okay to ask for help. Often people on the outside want to help, but they also don’t want to intrude. They would say “yes” in a heartbeat if they knew you would allow their help. Sometimes you have to swallow your pride and reach out for a helping hand. It’s as simple as asking.
5. You Betcha
Place fun-loving bets on everyday household events, in order to decide who does the worst chores. For instance, place a bet with your spouse on who will win the ball game on a certain night. The winner is exempt from doing the dreaded chore of the week. The bets can be about crazy things, like predicting which of your children will melt-down in the evening first, or what color car goes by your house next. Silly bets can get you laughing, which means that even if you lose, you’ll have a smile on your face as you do the chore. That’s gotta count for something.
P.S. Here’s a link to 10 unusual ways to have fun cleaning.