Self-care is important, and you recognize your need because you often feel tired and run down. But did you know that taking the time to get organized is self-care?
I hate clutter. Yet, I seem to somehow live in a perpetual state of it.
My countertops are often clean, but my ‘piles’ of ‘put away’ and ‘to do,’ always seem to grow and grow, multiplying at astronomical rates and making me feel very anxious about attending to them. I know that the biggest thing I need to get rid of the clutter is time, yet it’s because I feel like I have no time that the clutter just grows and plagues my brain.
Related: 6 Tips to Bust Closet Clutter
The thing is, though, I am wrong. It’s not more time that I need to get rid of the clutter. It’s more guidance on how to get rid of it, and more self-control in doing so! My mantra for this year has been, “Don’t put it down; put it away!” and things like simply hanging my coat up in the closet instead of on the back of the chair or putting the mail in my office (or the trash) when I get it (instead of on the kitchen table) have already made a difference.
We get overwhelmed with taking time to declutter, but what we really need to focus on is how to have the courage and purpose to just do it. If something doesn’t bring you joy, isn’t being used or wouldn’t be bought again, maybe you should get rid of it.
So what should you do with stuff you need to get rid of?
Sell it. If it isn’t selling, donate it.
When you are less cluttered, you really are positioned to be healthier, believe it or not.
Research shows that an organized lifestyle actually leads you to make healthier choices, right down to even choosing healthier foods to eat. Conversely, disorganized space and clutter can do the opposite, and can lead to health complications and anxiety situations that prevent you from decluttering even more.
Experts believe that engaging in activities that reduce clutter and organize your surroundings (yard work, vacuuming, DIY projects) can actually reduce your risk of a first-time cardiovascular event. In fact, a study found that people who had cluttered homes were almost 80% more likely to be obese, which is also a risk factor for heart disease. Organizing your home and your possessions, and weeding out the clutter is literally doing your heart a favor!
Mostly, though, getting rid of clutter can get rid of anxiety. Researchers have found that those with lifestyles of clutter and/or hoarding tendencies have high anxiety issues, and it makes sense. When there is chaos around us, it can trigger chaos inside of us.
So, do it for yourself. Don’t feel like you have to get your entire life organized this minute, but invest in yourself. Even just 15-20 minutes a day of focused organizing can make a big difference in your mood, your weight, your health, and the energy in your family!