A clean and organized home is the best gift you can give yourself on a daily basis. Mess and clutter can affect your mood, your ability to focus, and at times they can even affect your health.
We deeply care about our homes, why then is it so difficult to keep them in top shape? We blame not having the time and energy for the endless tasks of cleaning, laundry, cooking, and organizing. And that’s partly true.
But for a particular category of people who find it challenging to keep a tidy and welcoming home, the issue is not a lack of time. Some people get so mentally overwhelmed by clutter and mess that it’s becoming paralyzing. It can go both ways too — overwhelm, anxiety and depression lead to clutter and mess accumulating. Soon enough, it becomes a vicious circle that seems impossible to get out of.
While cleaning and getting rid of stuff might not technically be that difficult, the mental aspect of it is. According to cognitive neuroscientist Dr. Caroline Leaf, there is a direct link between hoarding, for example, and mental health. For some people, the struggle is real, and it never gets easier. Keeping on top of chores never truly becomes a habit, because it’s met with such resistance.
I’m passionate about this subject because I struggle with anxiety every day. While my anxiety is high functioning, and I do what others expect of me in my job, I tend to neglect my home’s state, and frankly, my own health at times.
I’m a recovering secret slob, and by recovering, I mean that I still regress to a place where I have too much stuff, and it’s scattered everywhere, or I’ve ignored vacuuming and cleaning the bathroom for a whole week, which in tiny-house time feels like a month.
It’s not because I don’t care. And I feel like that’s the case with most people who look like “they’re letting themselves go.” Most days, I just don’t have the energy — both physical and mental — to tackle what I perceive as humungous tasks. I sit there paralyzed, wishing things were different, and beating myself up about not being capable of changing them.