I grew up in a slightly messy household, though one that certainly aspired to be clean based on how often my mom told me to "find my floor." ("It's right there!" I would respond, snobbishly.) My room was pretty much always dirty, and it was always a point of contention. Yet at some time after moving out, I got better at cleaning. Not great, but better.
I firmly believe that messiness or neatness is mostly a byproduct of being bothered by the mess. Neat people will go nuts if a single extra credit card bill sits on the desk. Messy people will think nothing of the three foot pile of clothes in the corner of the bedroom. I'm somewhere in the middle, but I'm trying to become one of those people who becomes so incensed by clutter and messiness that I am driven to clean everything up straight away! I will no longer settle with having my window air conditioner sit on the floor of my living room for the entire winter. Clothes will be put away in a timely manner. This cookie recipe that has been sitting on my desk since December will find a new home!
This is all part of my general apartment improvement plan, which was mostly inspired by reading a bunch of old Domino magazines at the Y. I've lived here a while. Some things need changing. Or just cleaning.
First accomplishment: Covered that stupid old pillow. (it used to be clouds. hello, college!) In the process I learned how to make buttonholes. Folks, there is no stopping me now!