I once remember hearing an older woman at our church talk about picking up after your husband. She said that if it is your kids who are leaving stuff all over the place, by all means tell them to pick the stuff up. You are training them for adulthood. But if you are married and it is your husband leaving stuff everywhere, just pick it up for him. Dirty socks on the floor? Toss them where they belong. Trash left in the living room? Toss it, or make daily pick up part of the household routine and include the kids. In other words, if his mama didn’t train him to pick up after himself, then you can do it to serve him. That doesn’t mean you can’t talk to him about it. You can. Just talk about it at a neutral time, after you’ve modeled picking up his stuff so he can see that you are serious about the house. And only give him one area to work on at a time. Above all, be gracious. Think of your own struggles with housekeeping and keep in mind that any routines will be new for everyone.
(Excerpted from the Whole House Challenge Week 1 Assignment on the Master Bedroom.)
Disclaimer: My husband is not the messy one; I am. However, this woman’s attitude stuck with me and I’ve used the principle in other areas where my expectations have not been met.