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The Joy of Decluttering for Health and Well-being

The Joy of Decluttering for Health and Well-being
By letting go of what no longer serves you, you make room for a home that energises and inspires you every day.

Like most other kids my age, my childhood bedroom was packed. Furniture lined the perimeters, and there wasn’t a spot on the wall left uncovered by drawings, posters, or pages ripped out from my favourite magazines. Books were (and still are) a great love of mine, and bookcases overflowed. Knick knacks filled the shelves, and childhood teddies filled the curtain pelmet (ask your mom!).

Over time, things changed. Moving around a lot in my twenties meant I had to decide (over and over again) what I wanted to keep or throw away. I eventually realised that lighter moves were less stressful moves, and I could get rid of things I hadn’t used in a while to benefit someone else more than me. If I need it again in the future, I can buy it (instead of clinging to it for dear life in hopes that someday it’ll serve a purpose). The classic is a rowing machine that was more useful as a clothes horse. Does anyone else relate to this?

What’s my downsizing strategy? More expensive items that I use less often, like my blender or push bike, stay. And I still cling to sentimental things of all sizes. But I can easily part ways with extras, like spare curtains, glasses, and plates that take up more storage space than I’d like. I donate any clothes that I haven’t worn in over a year, too. I also recall Marie Kondo asking if an item sparks joy and if it doesn’t, I let it go.

Oh, it's a long-term strategy and something I need to work on consistently. There's still a long way to go, and it will never be perfect!

But decluttering can be incredibly freeing. The state of your home can affect your health in several ways, including your stress levels. When you walk into a cluttered space, it can feel overwhelming and chaotic, often leading to a cluttered mind. The constant visual reminder of disorganisation can increase anxiety, making it difficult to relax or focus.

Research has shown that clutter can raise cortisol levels, the hormone associated with stress, which negatively impacts both mental and physical health. Conversely, a clean and orderly environment can lower stress and provide a calming effect.

Decluttering is linked with a sense of accomplishment and being in control. Each item you let go of represents a decision made, reinforcing your ability to manage your life and surroundings. This process not only clears your physical space but also offers a psychological boost. The act of decluttering is a powerful way to reclaim your space and time, allowing you to focus on what truly matters. When you clear out unnecessary items, you create room for activities and belongings that bring you joy and fulfilment. This sense of control can enhance your mood, productivity, and overall sense of well-being.

Your home is your energy field, a reflection of your state of mind. A cluttered home can drain your energy, making you feel sluggish and overwhelmed. It’s as if each item out of place is a small weight on your shoulders, collectively pulling you down. The mental load of knowing there are chores to be done or items to be sorted can exhaust you before you even begin your day. On the other hand, a tidy and organised space can boost your energy levels, making you feel more vibrant and alive. Walking into a clean, orderly room can be invigorating, offering a sense of peace and readiness to tackle the day’s challenges.

Moreover, an organised home fosters creativity and clarity. With fewer distractions, your mind is free to wander, explore new ideas, and engage deeply in activities you love. This can lead to enhanced creativity and problem-solving abilities. Additionally, knowing that your space is well-maintained can reduce the time spent searching for items, thereby giving you more time to enjoy your home and the activities within it.

In essence, decluttering is not just about physical tidiness; it’s about creating an environment that supports your mental and emotional health. By letting go of what no longer serves you, you make room for a home that energises and inspires you every day.

Here’s a simple plan to kickstart your decluttering journey:

Start Small: Begin with a single drawer or a small section of a room. Don’t overwhelm yourself by tackling too much at once.

Sort Items: Create four piles – keep, donate, sell and discard. Be honest with yourself about what you truly need and use.

Ask the Joy Question: As Marie Kondo suggests, ask if each item sparks joy. If it doesn’t, it’s time to let it go.

Organise As You Go: As you declutter, find a place for everything. Ensure every item has a home.

Maintenance Mode: Regularly assess your belongings. Periodic mini-declutters can prevent the build-up of unnecessary items.

Remember, decluttering is not just about getting rid of things; it’s about creating a space that supports your well-being and brings you joy.

As the famous quote by William Morris goes, "Have nothing in your houses that you do not know to be useful, or believe to be beautiful."

Happy decluttering, and may your home become a sanctuary of serenity and joy!

“The simpler the space, the calmer the mind” - Jennifer Noseworthy

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Psst ... here are the ways you can work with me, in case you were wondering ...


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