how to stay organized and free of stress part 2. In our previous article, we talked about the excuses that people use when they want to justify their lack of organization at work or at home.
How to Stay Organized and Free of Stress Part 2
We discovered that if we want to get progressively better at organizing, we had to not only get control of our clutter, but we also had to be willing to release old habits and beliefs that were hindering us.
The relationship between clutter and stress
How does being disorganized lead to being stressed?
Below are some common by-products of a cluttered environment:
Stressed Mind – It may not seem like it on a conscious level, but having clutter around adversely affects your mind. Your subconscious mind is constantly working to find a solution to the clutter. Yet, without guidance from your conscious mind, your subconscious cannot formulate practical solutions.
Time-Consuming – Anyone who lives in a cluttered environment knows that it’s hard to find things. You spend a lot of time looking for items, where if you had things organized, would be in a place where they could be found easily. This is especially pertinent when you consider that people really only look for things when they absolutely need them. So when they can’t find them, it increases the stress even more.
Things Are Lost – Related to the time-consuming point, losing things in the clutter is a very stressful situation. When you live in the midst of clutter, you will spend a lot of time looking for what you need. Chances are no matter how hard you look for that thing, you won’t find it – which only compounds the stress.
Reduced Living Space – When you have a lot of clutter, you don’t have a lot of space. The clutter can get so bad that you only have a small space or pathway to move through your area.
A prime example of this is on the TV show, “Hoarders.” The show features people choosing to live in extreme clutter situations. It not only compromises their quality of life, but it also can cost them the very place they live when landlords and housing councils threaten eviction if they don’t clean up their dwelling.
Social Isolation – When your home is cluttered all the time, the last thing you want to do is have people over. This, of course, can lead to social isolation. What you end up doing is limiting yourself and your friends to meeting in public places such as restaurants and other activities, which may not be ideal for everyone involved.
Motivating yourself to organization
You want to get better organized, but you’re not sure how to get motivated to get started, or what you should even get started doing. It can especially be a challenge when you have to make the effort alone and when you’re not getting a lot of support.
Below are some simple steps you can take to get better motivated to clean up the clutter in your home or at work:
Create a De-Cluttering Schedule – When you’re setting out to declutter your space, it can be an overwhelming thing and you might be tempted to procrastinate. Don’t give in to that urge. Procrastination is the enemy of productivity!
Keep in mind that the human brain cannot accurately conceive of the passage of time. When you procrastinate for a year, it might only feel like a week. Nip procrastination in the bud by creating a decluttering schedule. Getting various decluttering tasks on a schedule and then following that schedule, will help you achieve success more readily than if you went into it without a schedule.
Set reminders for yourself, put it on your calendar, do whatever you have to do (including canceling other appointments) to accomplish your tasks on the scheduled day.
Kick-start Your Efforts With Visitors – Want to get motivated to declutter things quickly? Preemptively invite friends over for dinner and a movie, before your space is decluttered. This will motivate you with a specific date to complete your organization efforts.
Make sure you invite the friends that you are seeking approval from so that you will be motivated to get moving and get organized. There is nothing like having friends over to drive you to get everything as organized as possible.
Find Your Tolerance Level – Determining your tolerance level for clutter is vital to the long-term management of clutter. Some people cannot handle any degree of clutter in their homes while others operate seemingly oblivious to it.
If you’re feeling stressed about the clutter in your home or office, it’s because the volume of clutter has exceeded your threshold tolerance for clutter.
Once you identify your tolerance level, you can use it as a guide for staying organized. You know not to allow the clutter to pass a certain point because doing so will stress you out. Then you know the solution to the problem is to clean the clutter, thus relieving the stress.
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Following these guidelines is a great way to remove this stressor of disorganization and clutter permanently. As you move forward, you will develop practical habits for keeping clutter at bay.