Uncluttering your Mind

Dishes, Dishwasher, Dirty, Kitchen, Housework, Dish

My mother once said, “being rich won’t make you happy, but being poor can sure make you unhappy.”  I don’t have much to add to this succinct truth, except that I’m discovering it’s true for a lot of things besides money.  In my efforts at detachment and mental peace, I often tell myself that a clean house (or a better schedule, or a better organizing system, etc.) won’t really make me happier, and so it’s pointless to get anxious about them.  But what I’m finding out is that a clean house doesn’t make me happier, but it does take away a big occasion for me to be sad.  When I look around a cluttered or chaotic room, all the unfinished chores and things out of place automatically stress me out.  But when I look around a clean room, all I think is “what a nice room,” and I’m free to go on to other things.  Even the simple visual is important; things piled on top of each other in my house create metaphorical piles of worries in my mind, and an open and clean room clears my mind.

If you’re someone who’s prone to anxiety or depression, it’s okay to make your life easier.  You’re not necessarily trying to find happiness through making more money, or buying nice things for the house, or cleaning up; you’re just taking away things that make it easier for you to be sad.

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6 thoughts on “Uncluttering your Mind

  1. So true, and well said 🙂 My grandma paid for me to have my house cleaned a few times this winter/spring when the kids were all sick and I was deep in PPD, and the burden it took off of my mind was amazing. No more guilt about all of the cleaning that I should be doing, and far less mess and dirt to give me cause for sadness or worry! I’m trying to get a routine going now to keep things clean on my own, since I see what a difference it makes for me mentally 🙂

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    • What a nice present! Hope you are doing better. I’m working on keeping things in check regularly, rather than waiting till I get to a crisis point and can’t stand to look at my house!

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  2. It is silly to think that an organised home is only possible or appropriate for the “upper class”– aren’t we smart enough to know that true class is in your behaviour, not your wallet? I have a quote over my sink, I think I heard it on and NPR science show about lab rates. “Control makes stressors less stressful.”

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    • Absolutely . I am 65 years old and prone to depression . It took me this long to admit that an uncluttered physical environment is not “bourgeoise “. It is aesthetically satisfying and staves off angst. Go for it ! While you are young .

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      • “Bourgeois”–well put! I recently realized that I have a similar idea in my head, a kind of reverse snobbery, that says “store-bought things and organized houses are for rich people!” How silly.

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