Today I welcome Alice Robertson to share with us. Alice recently created Tidy Home as a place to share the great cleaning and organizing advice she has developed over the years. Alice loves helping others, and she knows having a clean, organized home can do wonders for stress and mental health.
You need not be a bonafide hoarder to feel the negative effects associated with a messy home. A survey by the National Association of Professional Organizers showed that 54 percent of Americans are overwhelmed with clutter, and 78 percent of people don’t know what to do with it. Lack of space and functionality aside, superfluous items make it impossible to keep a home clean, too. While this unsatisfying combination has been linked to stress and depression, the good news is that it’s one that can be remedied. The following guide offers ideas on how to do it.
This article is among many great resources from Tiffany that are designed to inspire you to live a conscious life centered on gratitude. For more of her content, visit Live. Learn. Love. Eat.
Clear The Clutter
First thing’s first: You’ve got to clear the clutter. While that may be easier said than done, it’s the key to breaking the cycle that makes it difficult to concentrate and find things, a cycle that over stimulates your visual, tactile and olfactory systems. A cluttered space also prompts feelings of guilt and embarrassment and makes it near impossible to relax. This chronic stress can lead to a whole host of other problems, including migraines, muscle tension, and adrenal fatigue.
While there’s a lot of advice floating around that suggests you chip away at decluttering a little bit at a time, Psychologies suggests that an accelerated approach may be more beneficial, especially if you’ve been finding it difficult to get motivated. For example:
- Don’t take 15 minutes a day to declutter. Make it a goal to tackle the entire job in a weekend — or a week — depending on the size of your home and the amount of clutter.
- Accept that it’s okay to let go of items you’re saving out of love and not because you need or enjoy them. Unload any unwanted Christmas gifts, old letters, boxes of greeting cards, etc. Throw away or donate anything you don’t truly need or enjoy.
- Refrain from buying complicated storage systems as they’ll only encourage you to hold onto more clutter. To keep the momentum going, don’t find a new place for items until you’ve completed the decluttering process.
- Start with the easy items so you don’t get hung up on flipping through old photo albums or scouring through boxes of childhood memories. Unnecessary paperwork is a great place to start.
Get Your Home Cleaned By A Pro
There’s clutter, and then there’s straight-up dirt and grime. Along with being unsightly, a dirty home can introduce numerous health risks, including eczema, skin irritations, asthma, nausea, headaches, COPD (chronic bronchitis), food poisoning, bacterial infections, and more. It may be time to hire professional cleaners. The national average cost to hire maid services is $221 for a standard one-time clean of a 2,000-square-foot home, a worthwhile investment to help boost both mental and physical health.
What’s more, having a professional deep clean can make daily and weekly touch-ups easier to manage because time-consuming tasks like cleaning baseboards, walls, ceiling fans, blinds and the grout between tiles have been taken care of. Small actions such as immediately cleaning up after meals, getting rid of the toothpaste in the sink, spritzing a mold-control product after taking a shower, and taking your shoes off before entering the house can keep your home from becoming too dirty.
Don’t Forget The Details
Now that your living space is clean and clutter-free, The Huffington Post suggests to consider adding some enhancements such as oxygen-producing plants, fresh flowers, aromatherapy diffusers (can be purchased for under $20), and dimmers on lighting switches to make your home feel more relaxed and cozy. Consider rearranging furniture so a room looks less cluttered and more inviting. Remove heavy drapes to allow for plenty of mood-boosting natural light to stream through the windows.
Light daily cleaning and monthly decluttering are two of the best ways to keep your home a space for relaxation. Educate the entire family on the importance of picking up after each task. Implement a workable system that’s easy to follow and enforce it regularly, including assigning chores. The sooner everyone gets into the groove, the better you’ll all feel about coming back home at the end of the day.
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