+
upworthy
Pop Culture

Hate cleaning? Here are 10 crowdsourced 'lazy hacks' for keeping any home spotless

Laziness can turn into resourcefulness with the right piece of advice.

cleaning tips
Photo by JESHOOTS.COM on Unsplash

Cleaning is not everyone's idea of a good time.

Some people love cleaning. They find it to be rewarding, cathartic and enjoyable, helping their souls scrub their way toward peace.

Then there’s the rest of us.

Sure, we all prefer some level of cleanliness in our home. But do we want it enough to whip out the mop and bucket to achieve it? Nahhhh, not for us anti-clean freaks. For those who hate cleaning, it really is a chore in the purest sense of the word—the very image of spending precious time doing the dishes (again? weren't they just washed?) is soul draining. That’s without even taking into consideration how mental illnesses like depression can dwindle our motivation to maintain any sense of upkeep.

Luckily, there’s hope for everyone, no matter what your situation is. Making an overwhelming task less daunting often comes down to incorporating small changes. Incremental progress is a slow, yet comfortable way to move toward a goal. This philosophy works for cleaning as well. And we live in a time when crowdsourced tips to get started are but a click away.

Reddit user u/Luckyjulydouble07 asked, “For those of you who hate cleaning, what’s your secret to a clean home?” to the online forum, and the hacks that people shared were surprisingly helpful. I definitely found myself taking a few notes. Other answers are sure to be hilariously relatable for fellow lazy cleaners.

Take a look below:

"Invite someone/people over. The only thing worse than cleaning is being embarrassed by how disgusting you are." – @DarwinsDayOff

via GIPHY

If this isn't absolute truth, I don't know what is. I can be struggling to clean my apartment for weeks, then suddenly make it spotless in less than an hour as soon as I know a guest is fast approaching. Sometime societal pressures can be helpful.

"Own less shit." – @obtusername

via GIPHY

This was seconded by @golindsatan74 , who shared:

"I have my house on the market, and because of this I have pretty much packed EVERYTHING that isn't something of direct use, as in all knick knacks and clutter are completely gone. With this, I have discovered it is incredibly easy to keep a house clean when it is extremely minimized with clear, easy to clean surfaces and open spaces easy to navigate. And when the day comes when we sell our house and move I will not unpack the cutesy crap and keep a clean, minimalist house. To me, this is now the way."

"Robot vacuum! Run it daily, pick up whatever it hits. I love that thing." – @No-Trouble814

via GIPHY

Where robot vacuums might not be strong enough to replace upright vacuums, there's no denying that having a little droid to help with basic upkeep is a godsend and also fulfills our dream our living in a real "Star Wars" universe.

"Clean a little bit as you go. I hate cleaning, but when I lived by myself my apartment was spotless. I would use a dish and wash it right then and there. 20 seconds now is better than 30+ minutes when dishes stack up." – @domestic_omnom

via GIPHY

This person also alluded to pairing less than fun tasks with an enjoyable activity, such as folding laundry while watching Netflix.

One of the best things I did for my mental health was hire a cleaning service twice a month. We have young kids, who just walk into a room and make it messy. Also, my husband's tolerance for mess and dirty areas is a lot higher than mine. I was going crazy asking for help and not getting it, or feeling like nothing ever stayed clean. So, a cleaner comes twice a week, and if I have to clean the kitchen floor once because the kids helped make pancakes it's fine, because that's all I have to do.” – @Fionngirl14

via GIPHY

Granted, not everyone can afford this kind of help. On the other hand, it might not be as out of reach as you'd think. Many cleaning services offer coupons and discounts, and companies such as Task Rabbit might be able to find an individual who's affordable. The point is, there's nothing wrong with needing and seeking out help.

"It may seem counterintuitive, but I do the cleaning chores I dislike most first and get them out of the way. Then, gradually, work on the rest. It always looks good that way." – @Back2Bach

via GIPHY

Doesn't seem counterintuitive at all. This method of doing the hard, important thing first is touted by several productivity experts, including James Clear, author of "Atomic Habits."

"I schedule things. I would never, say, vacuum because the house needs vacuuming. But if Tuesday is vacuum the living room day, I do it because it’s time. Litter box every day at 2:00. Weirdly, I find myself doing things early, so I can beat the schedule clock." – @Wienerwrld

via GIPHY

This is a great tip to make sure everything gets done and to avoid overwhelm. Unless your floor is on fire, as seen above.

"Music. If I can dance while I clean, I can clean forever. I'll still hate it, but at least it won't be boring." – @Nicetwin123

via GIPHY

Obviously, the Outkast classic, "So Fresh, So Clean" would need to be on the playlist.

Finally, @Applejuiceinthehal broke cleaning down in the best way possible:

"First, there are 3 types of cleaning

  1. Tidying (putting things away/out of sight)
  2. Organizing
  3. Actual cleaning

You should only do one of those at a time. If you start tidying but start organizing, then you won't get the tidying done. If you need to clean it, there are things in the way, and so you start tidying, then you won't end up cleaning, or it will take longer.

So if you need to clean bathrooms, but there are things on the counter, put whatever belongs in the bathroom in the correct draw/cabinet. If it doesn't belong, just put in a basket outside bathroom. Clean bathrooms.

Every room should have a junk drawer. When you are tidying, if the object doesn't have a 'place' then just put in the junk drawer. When it's organizing time, you can give the object a home.

There are some chores that you should do daily. I do dishes daily. I heard someone say once that it takes like 4 minutes to do them. So you can do them even if you had a long night. On the off night where you don't get to it, then at least there is just 1 day backed up.

Other non negotiables for me is wipe down kitchen sink, counter and stove. Kitchen is where food is so prefer that to be clean even if other areas are messy.

Some people sweep/vacuum, do ten minute pick-ups, laundry, make beds. But I suppose that depends on family size and etc." – @Applejuiceinthehall

Image from Pixabay.

Under the sea...

True
The Wilderness Society


You're probably familiar with the literary classic "Moby-Dick."

But in case you're not, here's the gist: Moby Dick is the name of a huge albino sperm whale.

(Get your mind outta the gutter.)


There's this dude named Captain Ahab who really really hates the whale, and he goes absolutely bonkers in his quest to hunt and kill it, and then everything is awful and we all die unsatisfied with our shared sad existence and — oops, spoilers!


OK, technically, the narrator Ishmael survives. So it's actually a happy ending (kind of)!

whales, Moby Dick, poaching endangered species

Illustration from an early edition of Moby-Dick

Image from Wikimedia Commons.

Basically, it's a famous book about revenge and obsession that was published back in 1851, and it's really, really long.

It's chock-full of beautiful passages and dense symbolism and deep thematic resonance and all those good things that earned it a top spot in the musty canon of important literature.

There's also a lot of mundane descriptions about the whaling trade as well (like, a lot). That's because it came out back when commercial whaling was still a thing we did.

conservation, ocean water conservation

A non-albino mother and baby sperm whale.

Photo by Gabriel Barathieu/Wikipedia.

In fact, humans used to hunt more than 50,000 whales each year to use for oil, meat, baleen, and oil. (Yes, I wrote oil twice.) Then, in 1946, the International Whaling Commission stepped in and said "Hey, wait a minute, guys. There's only a few handful of these majestic creatures left in the entire world, so maybe we should try to not kill them anymore?"

And even then, commercial whaling was still legal in some parts of the world until as recently as 1986.

International Whaling Commission, harpoons

Tail in the water.

Whale's tail pale ale GIF via GoPro/YouTube

And yet by some miracle, there are whales who were born before "Moby-Dick" was published that are still alive today.

What are the odds of that? Honestly it's hard to calculate since we can't exactly swim up to a bowhead and say, "Hey, how old are you?" and expect a response. (Also that's a rude question — jeez.)

Thanks to some thoughtful collaboration between researchers and traditional Inupiat whalers (who are still allowed to hunt for survival), scientists have used amino acids in the eyes of whales and harpoon fragments lodged in their carcasses to determine the age of these enormous animals — and they found at least three bowhead whales who were living prior to 1850.

Granted those are bowheads, not sperm whales like the fictional Moby Dick, (and none of them are albino, I think), but still. Pretty amazing, huh?

whale blubber, blue whales, extinction

This bowhead is presumably in adolescence, given its apparent underwater moping.

GIF via National Geographic.

This is a particularly remarkable feat considering that the entire species was dwindling near extinction.

Barring these few centenarian leviathans, most of the whales still kickin' it today are between 20 and 70 years old. That's because most whale populations were reduced to 10% or less of their numbers between the 18th and 20th centuries, thanks to a few over-eager hunters (and by a few, I mean all of them).

Today, sperm whales are considered one of the most populous species of massive marine mammals; bowheads, on the other hand, are still in trouble, despite a 20% increase in population since the mid-1980s. Makes those few elderly bowheads that much more impressive, huh?

population, Arctic, Great Australian Blight

Southern Right Whales hangin' with a paddleboarder in the Great Australian Bight.

GIF via Jaimen Hudson.

Unfortunately, just as things are looking up, these wonderful whales are in trouble once again.

We might not need to worry our real-life Captain Ahabs anymore, but our big aquatic buddies are still being threatened by industrialization — namely, from oil drilling in the Arctic and the Great Australian Bight.

In the off-chance that companies like Shell and BP manage not to spill millions of gallons of harmful crude oil into the water, the act of drilling alone is likely to maim or kill millions of animals, and the supposedly-safer sonic blasting will blow out their eardrums or worse.

This influx of industrialization also affects their migratory patterns — threatening not only the humans who depend on them, but also the entire marine ecosystem.

And I mean, c'mon — who would want to hurt this adorable face?

social responsibility, nature, extinction

BOOP.

Image from Pixabay.

Whales might be large and long-living. But they still need our help to survive.

If you want another whale to make it to his two-hundred-and-eleventy-first birthday (which you should because I hear they throw great parties), then sign this petition to protect the waters from Big Oil and other industrial threats.

I guarantee Moby Dick will appreciate it.


This article originally appeared on 11.04.15

National Autistic Society/Youtube

"Diverted" educational video shared through the Too Much Information Campaign.

Everyone who lives with autism experiences it somewhat differently. You'll often hear physicians and advocates refer to the spectrum that exists for those who are autistic, pointing to a wide range of symptoms and skills.

But one thing many autistic people experience is sensory processing issues.


For autistic people, processing the world around them when it comes to sight, smell, or touch can be challenging, as their senses are often over- or under-sensitive. Certain situations — like meandering through a congested mall or enduring the nonstop blasting of police sirens — can quickly become unbearable.

This reality is brought to life in a new video by the U.K.'s National Autistic Society (NAS).

The eye-opening PSA takes viewers into the mind of a autistic woman as she thinks about struggling to stay composed in a crowded, noisy train.

It's worth a watch:

The PSA hit especially close to home for 22-year-old actress and star of the video Saskia Lupin, who is autistic herself. "Overall I feel confused," she said, of abrupt changes to her routine. "Like I can't do anything and all sense of rationality is lost."

She's not alone.

According to a study cited in NAS' press release, 75% of autistic people say unexpected changes make them feel socially isolated. What's more, 67% reported seeing or hearing negative reactions from the public when they try to calm themselves down in such situations — from eyerolls and stares to unwelcome, hurtful comments.

The new PSA aims to improve that last figure in particular.

It's part of the organization's Too Much Information campaign — an initiative to build empathy and understanding in allistic (i.e., not autistic) people for those on the spectrum.

Autism Awareness Day, campaign, World Autism Awareness Week

Campaign by National Autistic Society created to share the autistic experience to the world.

Photo from Pixabay

"It isn't that the public sets out to be judgmental towards autistic people," Mark Lever, chief executive of the NAS, said in a statement in 2016. It's just that, often, the public doesn't "see" the autism.

"They see a 'strange' man pacing back and forth in a shopping center," Lever explained, "or a 'naughty' girl having a tantrum on a bus, and don't know how to respond."

Well, now we do.

Instead of staring, rolling your eyes, or thinking judgmental thoughts about the young person's parents, remember: You have no idea what that stranger on the train is going through.

“We can't make the trains run on time," said Lever. But even the simplest, smallest things — like remembering not to stare and giving a person some space and compassion if they need it — can make a big difference.


This article originally appeared on 03.28.18

Joy

Pet cockatiel is obsessed with singing 'September' by Earth, Wind and Fire

Kiki remembers the 21st night of September ALL. THE. TIME. and it's actually quite impressive.

Representative hoto by Saqib Iqbal Digital on Unsplash

Apparently, "September" is all the rage with cockatiels.

“Do you remember…the 21st night of September?” has been one of the most iconic song openings of the past 45 years, as the R&B hit by Earth, Wind and Fire perpetually serves as a catchy favorite for dance clubs, movie scenes and TikTok clips alike.

However, "September" has also gained wild popularity among an unlikely group—pet cockatiels.


One cockatiel in particular has taken a shining to the song to the point of obsession, to the combined delight and chagrin of his owner. You see, Kiki doesn’t just like listening to the song, he sings and dances to it. Loudly. Over and over. At uncomfortable hours of the morning.

Kiki’s owner has shared multiple examples of her pet bird reveling in his favorite song, and it’s hilarious every time.

Watch:

@kiki.tiel

Send help plz wheres the off button on parrot #fyp #foryou #bird #cockatiel #parrotsoftiktok #birdsoftiktok

"Kiki…it's 7 o'clock in the morning…" Yeah, Kiki does not care. Kiki is feelin' the groove.

This isn't just a one-off and it's also not just a random song. Here we can see that Kiki recognizes it and sings it when his owner plays it. (Just after pooing on her leg—the reality of having a bird, in case these videos make you want one).

@kiki.tiel

Babywipes handy at all hours 🫡 #bird #cockatiel #fyp #foryou #september #parrot

But Kiki doesn't even need anyone else around in order to sing his favorite song. Here he is singing and dancing all by himself when his owner left the room and left her camera running to see what he would do.

@kiki.tiel

Partying without me :( #cockatielsoftiktok #birds #fyp #for you

As cute and hilarious as this is, it surely gets old after a while, right? It's one thing to watch in a video—it's got to be entirely another to hear it all the time at home.

It's also not just a Kiki quirk. Apparently, "September" is a "thing" among cockatiels. Other cockatiels have been known to love it and sing it, though not quite as well as Kiki does.

Someone on Reddit asked why so many cockatiels love the song—one person even said it was basically the cockatiel national anthem at this point. No one knows exactly why, but this explanation by Reddit user nattiecakes is as good an explanation as any:

"Yeah, cockatiels genuinely like the song in a way they don’t universally take to many other songs. My cockatiel is 17 and early in life basically seemed to max out his harddrive space learning a little bit of La Cucaracha, The Flintstones theme, the phrase 'pretty bird,' and this horrible alarm clock sound that is similar to the hungry baby cockatiel sound. We thought we could not get him to learn anything else because they do have some limits.

Then 'September' came. Every cockatiel loved it. We decided to see if our cockatiel loved it.

I sh*t y’all not, within a DAY he whistled the first three notes, which is really all that matters. He hasn’t been able to learn more, but he loves it.

Now our African grey whistles it to him constantly. He used to reliably whistle La Cucaracha to our cockatiel when our cockatiel would get angry and upset, and our cockatiel would start singing instead and forget he’d been upset. But almost immediately our grey switched to using 'September' 90% of the time. Like, it’s so plain even to our grey that 'September' is the song to unlock a cockatiel’s better nature. I think the grey likes it a lot too, but he has many other songs he likes better.

As for why cockatiels like this song so much… all I can guess is it really resonates with their cheery vibe. I think the inside of a cockatiel’s mind is usually like a disco."

Rock on, Kiki. Just maybe not so early in the morning.

How to clear a stuffy nose instantly.

With cold season upon us, there's no better time to learn a couple of awesome and easy tricks that will clear up the dreaded and annoying stuffy nose.

Prevention magazine created a short video showing two easy ways to get you breathing free again no matter how stuffed up you might be.


Both tricks take less than two minutes and are certainly worth trying out when it feels like that runny nose might never go away.


Watch the YouTube video below:

This article first appeared on 9.8.17.

Pop Culture

A brave fan asks Patrick Stewart a question he doesn't usually get and is given a beautiful answer

Patrick Stewart often talks about his childhood and the torment his father put him and his mother through.

Patrick Stewart often talks about his childhood and the torment his father put him and his mother through. However, how he answered this vulnerable and brave fan's question is one of the most eloquent, passionate responses about domestic violence I've ever seen.



WARNING: At 2:40, he's going to break your heart a little.

You can read more about Heather Skye's hug with Captain Picard at her blog.


This article originally appeared on 06.26.13.