According to this study co-authored by an ASU professor, if you are married and spend more time on chores… you will have more sex. Boom.
Well, I don't know about y'all but when it comes to household conflicts between The Boy and I – chores is probably Number One. It is hands down the thing we argue about or get frustrated with each other over. And according to my many of my Facebook fans, it's a source of tension in a lot of relationships. So, I did a bit of research on how to de-frustrate this issue. Here's what I learned:
Clearly Define Your Roles: The biggest obstacle to getting housework done was a lack of communication. You both need to understand what the other considers as a household chore and how you each define what "clean" is. Draft up a list of common household chores and take turns picking out who does what (and how often). Try to keep it even, y'all. To help you get started, I've created a Household Chores Plan PDF below. Print it out and pick your chores… then stick to it.
Household Chores Plan
- Make the Bed
- Empty Dishwasher/Dishrack
- Wipe Down Bathroom Counters
- Fill Dishwasher/Do Dishes
- Wipe Down Kitchen After Cooking
- Take Out Trash
- Clean Bathroom
- Clean Fridge, Stove, and Microwave
- Maintain Car (gas, fluids, tires)
- Yardwork (mow lawn, weed, water)
- Clean Mirrors
- Maintain pets (litter box, baths, poop patrol)
- Mop Floors
- Dust General Areas
- Deep Clean Kitchen (behind appliances, backsplash, wipe down cabinets, organize)
- Deep Clean Bathroom (grout, drains, organize)
- Dust and Wipe Down Furniture
- Maintain Car (oil, filters, air, rotation)
- Spot Clean Upholstery and Rugs/Carpet
- Wipe Down Walls, Molding, and Trim
- Wash Windows
- Clean and Declutter Porch/Outdoor Areas
Have Incentives: Quite frankly the joy of having a clean house just isn't enough motivation for most of us. So pick other treats to help you stay motivated to complete your share of the Household Chores Plan. Save your favorite shows on DVR to watch after completing the yardwork or splurge on Thai food takeout after doing the dishes every night for a week. It's the small things, y'all.
Be Flexible and Pitch In: Both of you should be doing your fair share of the chores. But sometimes, shit will happen and you'll need to be flexible and lead a hand (and vice versa). Don't blame. Pitch in. Do what needs to be done and move on.
And Because It's Bound To Happen: If one person isn’t working on their portion of the Household Chores Plan - instead of getting angry, consider updating or revising your original plan. This will change and evolve as your relationship does. The goal is always to be on the same page and communicating as a team. By dividing the household chores in writing, you will probably find that both of you are more willing to do the work.
To Sum It All Up: Discuss your household chore needs and requirements, create a plan and stick to it, reward yourselves for a job well done, and help each other out once and a while. As with any aspect of marriage, if you communicate your common goals and expectations – there can be less fighting and problems.