Clutter: Why It May Be Draining You

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You may have a lot on your plate, be extremely busy, and feel as though you are on a constant roller coaster ride in life.

There may be various reasons for these feelings, however, one thing you may want to make note of is your surroundings.

Spend a few moments to take inventory of your home and office space.

Take a picture if you need to and look at it later when you have some down time.  This will give you a different perspective.

Now, if you are organized, know where your most frequent items are located, and can honestly say that the area is neat and doesn’t need any attention, then kudos to you!

But, if you notice that you have documents stacked that you haven’t looked at in weeks or clothes piled up to the ceiling, then you may need to get a handle on this in order to better your life.

Disorganization and clutter can make you tired, frustrated, angry, and even late.

Dr. Robert London, a New York City psychiatrist, states that clutter leads to anxiety, despair, family stresses and embarrassment.

Furthermore, living in a space that is over filled and disorganized can be holding you back from living a life that you deserve.

7 Reasons to Declutter

  • You need to move or downsize
  • Feeling anxious or depressed
  • Desire a home makeover
  • Need to clean or paint but unable
  • Can’t find items that you need
  • Unable to have company over
  • You have too many items
  • Need mental clarity

The truth is, we can become so accustomed to our disorganized surroundings, that it becomes invisible to us.

It just seems to somehow mix in with everything else and overlooked as even causing a problem.

And this can go on for a long time.  Really, it’s kind of a silent issue that doesn’t always get handled in a timely manner.

If you are seeking more peace of mind, then getting your living and work space organized should be addressed.

Take Action

This is much easier said than done in many cases, but simply deciding to get things in order is a great step in the right direction.

Professional organizers all around suggest that you make decluttering a priority in your schedule.

A suggestion is to have garbage bags and boxes on hand so that you can separate the items that you want to keep, donate, and throw out.

If you don’t have a huge amount of clutter, then you may decide to spend a little time each day to get organized.

But, for larger amounts, you may want to recruit a team of people such as friends and family members, so that you can tackle a lot in a short amount of time.

For example, pick a Saturday morning for a couple of hours to throw out items that are no longer needed.

You can then separate the items that you want to keep and ones that you would like to donate to charity.

Clutter Free Maintenance

As we know, it’s easy to let things pile up and get out of hand. Let’s not let that happen again.

Now that everything has been put in its designated place, remember how good it looks and feels and do what you can to keep it that way.

Here are some new habits that you may want to adapt:

  • It sounds easy enough, but put things back where they belong as soon as you are done with them.  This usually doesn’t take very long and can save so much time in the long run.
  • Discard unwanted mail as soon as it comes and set mail in a designated area for when you are ready to go through it.
  • Make sure everyone in the house is on board with your efforts of keeping the house clean.
  • Wash dishes as you cook and make sure that dry dishes are put away.
  • Items that are not being used or are off season should be stored away until needed.
  • Before bed, do a walkthrough of the house or office and make sure that things are put away.

Doing these things everyday will help you keep your living space in good order and ready for the following day.

Where to Donate

There are many places that you may be able to donate your unwanted items.  In many cases, these items can be dropped off locally, or arranged for pickup by the organization.

Please see below for 3 of the top charities that you may be interested in donating to:

The Salvation Army – clothing and household items are donated to people in need.  Donations are also used to help raise money in emergency situations such as flood victim and provide needed items to homeless shelters.

Purple Heart – Donations of clothing and housewares are sold to help raise funds for Purple Heart’s mission to support veterans and their families throughout the nation.

St Vincent DePaul SocietyGently used clothing, furniture and household goods may be donated.  These items are used to stock St. Vincent de Paul thrift stores and are sold at affordable prices. The society also offers a furniture voucher program for people who are transitioning from homelessness, domestic violence victims and others who may be in need.