If you’re at home right now, take a moment to look around you. What do you see? Do you see a tidy home in which everything (well, practically everything!) is in its right place, or do you see
A series of studies used in the writing of the book Life at Home in the 21st Century: 32 Families Open Their Doors, show that people, especially women, living in cluttered homes
This experience was outlined in psychiatrist Dr. Audrey Sherman’s “Dysfunction Interrupted” column on PsychCentral
It’s true, living, working, and even driving in cluttered spaces does nothing for nurturing mental health, but sometimes the issues are so intertwined, it’s hard to figure out what came first–the depression with the clutter or vice-versa.
Recently, we shared this photo as part of an article detailing an Indiana mother’s struggle with depression. In a now-viral Facebook post, Brittany Ernsperger added the photo to accompany a story outlining the experience leading up to the massive sink-full of clean dishes.
We learn that Ernsperger didn’t just have a bustling dinner party that she had to clean up for, that sink was full of dishes that had piled up over the course of 2 weeks. The mother of four then goes on to explain that, after several tearful attempts days prior, she finally emerged from the extreme depressive fog that kept her from getting the household task done in the first place.
After sharing her story and picture, the post went viral, and she even earned a spot on Today
How to improve your headspace by decluttering
Now that you know that there’s a firm link between household mess and depression, let’s take a look at some ways we can solve the problem. Here are our favorite Feng Shui-inspired tips to check off your list as you clean:
Donate or get rid of unnecessary items (that includes things that have not been used in the past 6 months)
Only keep objects around you that elicit positive memories
Re-organize your home so that it is a welcome place for guests
Only keep the things that you currently need in your immediate space–all else belongs in storage.
See, that’s not so hard, isn’t it?
If you suffer from depression and/or you feel overwhelmed by a cluttered home, be sure to speak with your doctor. They might have some more advice on treatment options that can be added to your mental health plan.
What are your thoughts on the connection between clutter and depression? Does this ring true for you? How do you keep a consistently tidy home?