Many people know that when someone is experiencing a bout of depression they may avoid cleaning and allow their living space to become cluttered and disorganized. This is often because depression drains one’s energy and motivation, taking away their drive to keep things organized. However, many people may not realize that there is often a dangerous cycle connected to depression and clutter. When individuals struggle with hoarding or have trouble finding the motivation to clean their living space, the clutter around them can worsen their mental health. It is essential to understand the psychological effects of clutter on mental health and the value of taking steps to reorganize one’s environment.
How Clutter Can Effect One’s Mental Health
#1. Clutter is distracting. It can lead to overstimulation and make it hard to focus on the task at hand. If you are trying to work or study from home, you may find yourself consistently overwhelmed and unable to be productive. For some people, clutter can be so overpowering that it can make them not want to spend time in their own homes.
#2. Clutter can raise stress levels. Everyone knows that feeling of panic when you’re running late for something, and you can’t find your car keys. If you have a lot of clutter in your home, you likely often find that you can find a particular object when you need it. When someone’s living space is significantly cluttered, this is a feeling that they will likely experience regularly in different ways.
#3. Clutter can pull your brain into a lot of different directions at once. You may want to clean only not to know where to start. This can become so discouraging that many people decide to give up altogether, and the mess continues to grow larger and larger over time.
#4. It is often more challenging for someone to relax and enjoy their living space if it is constantly cluttered. Nobody wants to keep stepping over items to cross a room or clear off a piece of furniture to sit down. A cluttered home can become wholly inefficient, and you may have even found that you ignore certain rooms completely.
#5. Clutter can affect one’s relationship. While someone might not be bothered by their clutter, those they live with may not be. This can lead to strained relationships. Additionally, someone with a cluttered home may feel embarrassed and not want to invite others over. This can lead to isolation and a worsened state of mental health.
The Benefits of a Clutter-Free Home
There are many ways keeping up a low-clutter, or clutter-free home can help benefit one’s mental and physical health and overall well-being. Some examples include:
- A decrease in fire hazards
- More mindful eating (due to ability to properly utilize one’s kitchen)
- Increased focus and energy
- A sense of accomplishment and confidence
- Pride in one’s home
- Better air quality
- Less time spent searching for lost items
- Less fall-related injuries
- The ability to sell one’s home faster
- Increased functionality within one’s home
- Better overall mental health
- The ability to save money (by bringing fewer items into your home)
How to Begin the De-Cluttering Process
With spring right around the corner, you may feel like it’s time to begin de-cluttering your home. If you don’t know where to start, consider the following tips:
- Be aware of what you’re bringing into your home. If you’re constantly buying more and more stuff, your home will quickly become cluttered again even after you’ve organized it. Take the time to reflect on what you’re spending your money on. Perhaps you’re buying more than you need.
- Try them out before as a rule. If you have something new you want to bring into your home, find something that you no longer get much use out of that can be taken out.
- Consider donating the possessions you don’t need. Some people grow attached to their belongings and have trouble letting them go even if they no longer need them. However, when they know their items will go to someone who will appreciate them and use them, this process can be far easier.
- Start with one room at a time. Because de-cluttering can be overwhelming, it can be easier to start small and move from room to room. You’ll also be able to see your progress as you go, which can help motivate you to continue with the rest of the home.
- Don’t be afraid to ask for help and enlist a friend or family member to help with this process.
There can be a vicious cycle between a cluttered home and depression. While someone with depression may lack the motivation to clean their living space, living with clutter can worsen one’s mental state. This is because it can be overstimulating, distracting, and can make a home less functional. It can even impact one’s relationships. There are many benefits of keeping a clutter-free home, such as increased focus and energy, increased pride in one’s home, and better overall mental health. If you want to take the steps towards decluttering your home, consider starting small with just one room or area of the home and going from there. This makes this process a lot less overwhelming. Don’t be afraid to enlist a friend or family member to help. At Achieve Concierge, we want to help you live your best life, starting with your mental health. For more information, call (619) 393-5871 today.