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Kids’ Room a Mess? This Should Help!

messy room
Matt Grommes, Flickr

Moms, are you sick of looking at your kids’ messy rooms? Bed never made? Toys all over the place? Clothes balled up on the floor?

If you’re at the end of your rope, take a deep breath, and keep reading…this will get them to clean.I’m a mess of a human being, and pretty much always have been.

It goes without saying that my room, much to my mother’s horror, was (and is) also always a mess. But today, there is hope for change! Why?

It’s National Clean Your Room Day!

Now, as a messy person, I can tell you there is nothing than motivates me to clean LESS than my mother telling me I need to clean up.

What WOULD motivate me though, well, that’s the important thing:

  • Bugs. You start seeing bugs in your room (more than just the occasional spider), and well that’s just gross, and definitely a sign that it’s time to clean.

The solution: Start putting fake bugs all over your kids’ rooms. (If you’re extra brave, go for the real thing.) Sure, they may be traumatized and emotionally scarred for life, but hey, they’ll clean up!

  • Finding Money. It never fails, I clean up the clothes and junk off the floor, I inevitably find loose change and crumpled up dollar bills. No lie, I once gathered upwards of $20 off my floor in quarters. (Told you, I’m really a disaster of a person.)

The solution: Throw a couple quarters  (or dollar bills if you’re a baller) on the floor, and tell your kids that whoever cleans the room gets to keep the money.  Bonus points for you if you use fake money and get away with it.

  • Humiliation. I’d never want someone I thought was cool to see my room a mess. I’d also never want my friends to come over if the REST of my house was a mess.

The solution: Surprise guests! Throw a surprise party for your kid, invite the whole class over, and make sure your whole house is a disaster before anyone even gets there. Then you’ll be the proud parent of “The Dirty Kid” who will spend the rest of their natural life obsessively cleaning to prove to everyone that they aren’t dirty. (Just be ready for the scorn of the other parents…you might also be known as “The Dirty Family”…)

  • Losing Things. I may be messy, but I can always tell you exactly where my stuff is. It might be under a pile of clothes, or in the corner under a stack of old mail, but I can find it quickly and with stellar accuracy. When I can no longer find things, I know it’s time to clean.

The solution: Start stealing stuff from your kids’ rooms. Their favorite shirt, toy, electronic doodad…steal it, hide it, and when said kid freaks out about not being able to find it, rationalize that it must be in there somewhere…they’ll find it when they clean up. (The trick here is sneaking the doodad back in before they realize you stole it. You’re a saavy parent, you’ll figure it out.)

  • Severe Hunger. “I can’t eat until I clean? Fine, I’m not hungry anyway!!!!” Yeah, that lasts about 2 hours…then the candy stash is empty and I’m gonna need a meal.

The solution: Tell the kids they are not allowed to eat anything in the house until they clean up. Eventually the natural human instinct to survive will kick in…they’ll clean up and beg you to feed them. (The tough buggers might take a couple days.)

 

Now, I’m sure DYFS or Dr. Phil would tell you that my suggestions are ‘bad parenting’ or ‘illegal’ but do you want the room clean or not?? Desperate times call for desperate measures.

Hopefully that helps, let me know how it goes. When all else fails, just close the door and pour yourself a glass of wine. Problem solved.

Do your kids’ rooms drive you crazy? Share your comments below!

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