A tidy house can not only clear literal clutter. It can remove mental clutter as well.
The rise of new methods of cleaning and wellness, such as the KonMari method, popularized by Japanese lifestyle guru Marie Kondo, or UK instagram sensation Sophie Hinchlifee, (otherwise known as Mrs. Hinch) has shown us that in 2020, organizing is trendy. But does tidying really ‘transform your life,’ as Marie Kondo states? Is there really a link between mental health and organizing?
Does a clean house really mean a cleaner state of mind?
For most folks, piles of clutter may not seem like a huge deal. The water glass colony slowly building on your desk might be mildly inconvenient, – you may struggle to find an empty space to place a glass on your desk – but this clutter does not fundamentally change your life…does it?
The short answer is yes, it does. Psychological research has proven that there is a strong link between mental health and keeping a clean home. According to a University of California study, couples who described their home as messy or chaotic showed increased levels of cortisol, a hormone produced in the adrenal gland as a response to increased stress.
How mess leads to stress.
Cleaning can give you a sense of clarity, control, serenity, and can even be meditative. Studies have also shown that throwing out objects can activate a part of our brain that is connected with processing pain – demonstrating the strong link between physical and mental cleanliness.
Organization can empower you with a sense of control over your life. The persistence of clutter and the feeling of a packed home can actually activate your anxiety and make you feel more stressed, according to the University of California Los Angeles. Mess has a real impact on our well-being, mood, and stress levels.
Clutter can inhibit our ability to fall asleep quickly, and can even have physical impacts on our wellness. A survey conducted by the National Sleep Foundation found that those who make their beds every morning are 19 percent more likely to have a better night’s sleep. Clean sheets can also be conducive to a good night’s sleep. About 75 percent of respondents said they had a better night’s rest when they slept with clean sheets.
Housekeeping also promotes the releasing of endorphins, which can improve your ability to sleep! As you may know, more rest leads to reduction of stress. By participating regularly in housekeeping that requires mild aerobic exercise like scrubbing or mopping, you can stimulate anti-anxiety effects. As well as being a good way to channel your negative emotions and occupy your mind, cleaning can have tangible effects on your stress and anxiety.
A clean space affects our psychology.
In addition to the physical merits of cleaning, a clean house and clean space itself can promote your mental wellness. In a study conducted on the psychology of the home, researchers found that
respondents who described their homes as “cluttered” or littered with “unfinished projects” had more depressed moods and were fatigued. In comparison, those with homes that were “restful” and “restorative” had happier moods and were well-rested.
Studies have also shown that clutter in your home can distract you from getting tasks done, and decrease your productivity. It’s work for your brain to process the extra stimuli piles of papers, stacks of books, and laid-out clothes on the floor creates. Take the time out of your day to do some simple organization – it could be as easy as filing some papers away that are cluttering your desk, or tidying up your office drawer, and reap the results!
We are happy to help you keep your home tidy and clean. Our team uses steam to kill 99.9% of bacteria, too. Call us today (415) 519-7404 or book an appointment online.