Admittedly, I have a hard time keeping my space clean. How can I become better at this in my UNF apartment?

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Your guests will appreciate your tidiness!

We all have our moments of laziness almost every day. The trash can is full? Another roommate can take it out. The dishes haven't been washed? That's fine, I'm sure someone else will notice and clean them. My laundry's all over the room? Why should I worry about it if it's my own room? Believe it or not, breaking these habits early is one key to a successful future. I'm sure you've been thinking that maybe someday you'll "grow up" and start being cleaner, but when is that going to start? You can start it right now, today, for the sake of your roommates, your UNF apartment, and your overall morale!

Be Aware

Whenever you do something that you know isn't contributing to keeping your UNF apartment a clean living space, you are always aware of it, but choose to ignore it. When you leave a dish in the sink or pots and pans on the stove, you know exactly what you are doing. So, why not turn the tables? Instead of leaving your finished drink or plate on the coffee table that came with your furnished apartment, go ahead and rinse it off and toss it in the dishwasher; if your apartment is not equipped with a dishwasher, wash and rinse your plate or cup quickly and leave it to dry. The whole process only takes about thirty seconds tops, so why not go ahead and do it? It has to happen anyway!

Remaining cognizant of your unclean actions will eventually lead to you taking care of your responsibility right then and there; this process is referred to as cognitive dissonance. It just starts with taking notice. For instance, I had a huge problem with handling laundry in my bedroom. I used to pop off my clothes at the end of the day and just leave them on the ground, not even attempting to place them in my laundry basket or take them to my apartment's washer and dryer. As a result, whenever I was having company over, I would scramble and clean the mountains of clothes on my floor, which became a real hassle after a while. So, what did I do? I recognized it every time I left clothing on the ground. Gradually, I started to put my clothes in my hamper more and more often, and today I don't even let a sock stay on the ground for more than a couple seconds.

Create an Accountability System

The above process is a thousand times easier said than done. Somebody might even start more clean habits and keep them up for three days or so before getting lazy again and giving up. A powerful tool to keep your good habits up is creating an accountability system. Odds are you live with at least one other roommate, so asking them to keep you accountable and point out when you aren't keeping up with your goals can help you stay on track. If you live by yourself in a studio apartment, for example, this challenge is going to be especially tough, but have no fear. You can call on a friend to check in on you now and then to see if your motivation is sticking. I know it will be very humbling and maybe even embarrassing, but you're doing yourself and future roommates a favor!

Keeping your UNF apartment clean all the time is no easy task. However, I know from personal experience that starting these habits and keeping them up over time will make your living space far more enjoyable for you and those you live with. Follow the above advice and do not hesitate to reach out to your roommates or friends for accountability! After all, that's what friends are for!

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