Stress is believed to be the prime reason for various types of diseases these days. However, clutter is rarely considered as a cause of stress, although it has a huge influence over the way we feel about ourselves, our homes and offices. Cluttered spaces lead to numerous adverse effects on the people - helplessness, anxiety and tension.
But why does mess cause us stress? What steps should we take to avoid the bad consequences of living in clutter? Read on to find out.
Clutter gives us a feeling that our work is never finished
Watching and living in a room which is constantly messy leads to a feeling of incompleteness - each item which is not placed in its original space is one more task in our to-do list. The more these items are, the more tasks in the list. At the end, our brain is overloaded.
The solution: Every time you use something, put it back in its designated place right after you're done with it. It is not so easy to do, that’s why you should be persistent and dedicated to the cause.
Clutter hinders our mental and physical relaxation
When our homes get messy we have this feeling that things are out of control. It immediately affects our inner peace and emotional well being, therefore disturbs our rest.
The solution: Everything you don't really need or use should be thrown away. If it is in a good condition - donate it. Store the things you use rarely in boxes. Put these boxes in the garage or in the storage area of your house. If you haven’t opened a box for a year - get rid of what’s inside.
Mess makes us lose focus
Clutter has the ability to distract us in a way that draws our focus away from what our attention should be engaged with.
The solution: Store things in closed spaces, like cabinets and drawers. If your belongings are placed on open shelves or on top of your desk, your brain will be “seeing” them, consequently the free space our minds need in order to concentrate will be minimized.
Clutter causes our senses to overwork
All the clutter around us keeps our senses under tension, stimulating them visually and tangibly. These stimuli aren't inevitable or valuable to us, but they would rather overwhelm our minds with less important things. There are many techniques that can help you relief your senses and body, but mastering them will take much more time than tidying your room.
The solution: If your entire house is messy, don’t de-clutter it on your own but involve the whole family in the process. Each family member should clean the space he uses. If you live separately, divide each room in sections and tackle them one by one. The sense of accomplishment will encourage you to continue tidying up.
Clutter generates a sense of shame and guilt in ourselves
Clutter makes us constantly feel guilty that we are not that organized, and embarrassed when unexpected guests come by our homes or work areas and run across the total mess we’ve made.
The solution: Get rid of the piles of paper on your desk. Provide yourself with document trays and sort each paper or file as soon as it arrives. Pay close attention to what others bring in your personal spaces - menus, brochures, flyers and mail are not the things you really need.