The Challenge: Declutter

Why?

A disorganized space actually can affect your mental health. A study by Saxbe and Repetti (2010) found a positive relationship between the levels of cortisol, a stress hormone, and the presence of household clutter, suggesting that a more organized and decluttered living space may contribute to lower stress levels. Additionally, a study by Roster and Ferrari (2019) explored the impact of clutter on subjective well-being, revealing that individuals who reported having more clutter in their homes experienced lower life satisfaction and a higher prevalence of symptoms related to depression. These findings align with the principles of environmental psychology, as discussed by Joye and Dewitte (2018), emphasizing the influence of physical surroundings on mental well-being. *

 

How?

This challenge may be difficult for some and easier for others. But unless you are a certified neat-freak, chances are there is some amount of clutter in your life. One suggestion we found is to split the areas of your life into sections and work on one at a time. Instead of tackling your entire living space, focus on one room at a time and keep going.

And don’t forget about digital clutter! These days, our devices are packed with clutter. Go through you’re photos and be selective (do you need 15 pictures of the same thing?). Organize the files on your desktop. Delete apps on your phone that you don’t use. And remember, once you’ve successfully decluttered, being mindful of accumulating new clutter.

Books to Help You Get Organized

 

*Saxbe, D. E., & Repetti, R. L. (2010). No place like home: Home tours correlate with daily patterns of mood and cortisol. Personality and Social Psychology Bulletin, 36(1), 71-81.

*Roster, C. A., & Ferrari, J. R. (2019). Associations between clutter and psychological well-being: The mediating role of perceived control. Journal of Environmental Psychology, 63, 11-17.

*Joye, Y., & Dewitte, S. (2018). Relating aesthetic and affective appraisals to the appreciation of well-designed everyday objects. Psychology of Aesthetics, Creativity, and the Arts, 12(2), 127-136.