After years of struggling with clutter anxiety and feeling like my home was closing in on me, I finally began the actual process of clearing clutter from my living space. It didn’t take long to realize why decluttering is important and why it should be part of everyone’s self-care routine.
In this post, we’ll discuss the importance of decluttering, how it relates to self-care, and some simple decluttering tips to get you started. If you need more decluttering ideas, I have plenty of declutter tips to help!
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How Is Decluttering Related To Self-Care?
Decluttering can be difficult and exhausting, especially when it comes to decluttering sentimental items, so how can I possibly tell you that it’s self-care?
Here’s the thing… self-care doesn’t always feel good while you’re doing it. But the RESULTS… that’s where the benefits lie. I mean, exercise is self-care, right? And it pretty much sucks while you’re doing it. But you feel better afterward as your physical health improves.
Decluttering is exactly the same, just with your physical space.
Your physical surroundings have a huge impact on how you feel and function every day. Creating calm and space for the things that matter most can help make room for new things and experiences in our lives.
Let’s explore why decluttering is important — and ways to do it with minimal stress!
Why Decluttering Is Important
For anyone who struggles with messy homes and letting go of things, I get it. I used to be a borderline hoarder. I had a hard time getting rid of anything, even if I never used it.
Having all of that stuff was frustrating and depressing. But at the same time, I just couldn’t imagine doing all. the. work. to get my house in perfect order, even though I WANTED to live with less clutter.
Eventually, it got to the point where I never wanted anyone to come over. And then one day, I decided to declutter just a little bit at a time until ONE area was done.
It was amazing! I started feeling better about myself and my home immediately. And by the time I had been decluttering for several weeks, I realized that my entire outlook had changed. I had been practicing decluttering as self-care without even realizing it.
Many of us fear the decluttering process because we don’t REALLY understand what it’s about, aside from getting rid of stuff. At the core, it’s about finding a balance between what matters THE MOST to us and what doesn’t add value or ease to our lives.
And really, that’s also a good definition for self-care and intentional living. So, let’s review four reasons decluttering can be an important part of your self-care routine…
1. Decluttering Improves Your Focus When You’re Overwhelmed
When your home is cluttered, it can be difficult to focus on the task at hand. You’re constantly being distracted by the mess and visual reminders of all the things you ‘should’ do, which means you can’t ever just think about one thing.
All of those messy piles or stacks of boxes and bins take up a huge portion of your mental capacity. When you’re overwhelmed and can’t even THINK, clutter can make you feel even more anxious and unfocused.
But when you have fewer things in your space, it’s easier to relax and focus on what’s important. Your field of vision is calm instead of chaotic, and there isn’t quite as much ‘visual noise’ competing for your attention.
Without all the visual distraction of so much stuff, you can begin to reclaim a sense of simplicity, peace of mind, and control over your life. Even having just one clutter-free space in your home will make a big difference!
2. Decluttering Allows For Stress Relief And Mental Cleansing
When you live with clutter, it’s easy to get stressed out because you’re constantly thinking about mess. The clutter also gives rise to anxiety, which can make it difficult to function.
Decluttering the space can help relieve this mental pressure and allow you to be more present in your life.
There’s nothing quite like the feeling of decluttering your space and getting rid of unnecessary stuff for lowering stress levels. Letting go of all that stuff can be incredibly liberating and empowering. It’s a way to release some of the negative energy that’s been weighing you down.
Not to mention, it feels really good to get rid of things you don’t need or use anymore! Research has shown that it can also lead to stress relief and improved mental health.
So if you’re feeling stressed out, don’t hesitate to get rid of the excess clutter. Go ahead and purge your closet, donate those unwanted items, and breathe a sigh of relief.
You may just find that it was exactly what you needed to help you feel more relaxed… and isn’t that a major goal of self-care?
3. Decluttering Helps To Overcome Mental Blocks
When we’re surrounded by clutter, our thoughts are often on that mess. We develop mental blocks regarding the clutter. It’s even worse if we’re an overthinker in other areas of life!
We tell ourselves that decluttering will be too hard, we don’t have time, we don’t have space for sorting, we don’t know the ‘right’ things to do with the items we declutter… and on and on it goes…
However, when we just START decluttering, we begin knocking down those mental hurdles. Eventually, the blocks shrink or disappear along with all the stuff we don’t need.
Once you make progress toward getting the clutter out of your space, your mind becomes clearer. You can also start being more productive and organized.
And since you have already taken some really serious action and proven that you can let go of physical clutter — which is an incredibly difficult feat — you’re more open to conquering other mental blocks you may have.
4. Decluttering Is An Opportunity For Change
Although this is not always an easy thing to admit or deal with, purging clutter can show you that your life is not where you want it to be.
The thing is, that’s okay! Working through realizations like this is a vital part of self-care.
Taking time out of your day to declutter helps you see that you can accomplish what you set your mind to. This also helps you set goals for yourself and get the motivation to make changes in other areas of your life.
Decluttering is about FREEDOM — especially in ways you might not expect. All that clutter can actually block out new ideas and creativity. By getting rid of things that we don’t need, we make space for new possibilities.
When we declutter, we’re giving ourselves permission to move on. We’re making room for new experiences and new possibilities. By decluttering, we’re saying that we’re ready for change. And change can be good. Change can be exciting.
The process of decluttering physical objects often leads to us finding new purpose for our lives and a renewed sense of self. This way of thinking can actually help us live in more harmony with our values and increase happiness and satisfaction in our lives.
Practical Solutions For Minimizing Clutter In Your Life
Now that we’ve gone over some of the reasons why decluttering is so important for self-care, let’s talk about how to actually get started. The thought of decluttering your entire home may seem overwhelming, but there are some small steps you can take to make the process easier.
First, stop bringing more things into your space. This will probably mean changing some strong habits. One way to make it work is by expressing more gratitude for the things you already have, which reduces your ‘need’ for new things.
Second, spend about 10 minutes decluttering every single day. I don’t recommend more than this because decluttering for a long day means you could easily end up exhausting yourself or creating a bigger mess. Start with these easy things to declutter.
Third, concentrate on your own possessions. Eventually, you can think about how to approach other family members or a partner who refuses to declutter. But in the meantime, the important thing is to get yourself in order.
Fourth, donate, donate, donate. When you’re an overwhelmed overthinker, this decision to declutter and donate eliminates so many potential issues and stumbling blocks.
Fifth, start some small daily habits for a tidy home. Taking care of a few things around your house on a daily basis will magnify the positive changes created by your decluttering as self-care.
The physical and mental benefits of living in a clutter-free home with plenty of clear space are innumerable.
When you start thinking of decluttering as self-care and really pay attention to the great benefits and results, it changes things. Before you know it, your whole house will be clutter-free!
I hope the four reasons we’ve discussed in this post will motivate you to take the next step and begin your decluttering journey today!
You’ve got this!
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