The simple way to de-clutter and improve your health

Take a look around. If you’ve been feeling stressed out, it might not be rush hour traffic, work deadlines, or family matters to blame. You might be surrounded by clutter.

You know…old clothes you keep planning to donate, mail you need to sort through, Mt. Laundry, and other stuff that needs to go or get put away.

If clutter is stressing you out, it’s time to do something about it. A little stress from time to time is a normal part of life.

But if you’re living with chronic stress, according to the National Institutes of Health, it can lead to health problems such as:

  • Heart disease
  • Sleep disorders
  • Digestive problems
  • Fatigue
  • High blood pressure
  • Diabetes
  • Depression
  • Anxiety, and
  • Other health problems

Stress can take a toll on your health. And if a cluttered house, messy garage, or office buried in paperwork is stressing you out, it can mess with your mind too.

In a recent study published in the Journal of Neuroscience, researchers looked at brain scans to see how people responded to clutter.

The results: Clutter causes stress that interferes with brain function. If you’re surrounded by mess, you’re more likely to get distracted and have trouble focusing. And it doesn’t have to be that way.

Spring cleaning: Tips to de-clutter & de-stress

Ready to tackle some spring cleaning? Here are some things you can do to clean up, get organized, de-clutter and de-stress:

  • Wardrobe reset. Go through the closets in your house. If you have clothes that don’t fit, or haven’t been worn it in a year, donate it, sell it, or throw it out.
  • Bathroom break-up. If it’s been a while since you cleaned the bathroom, get down to business and scrub the toilet, shower, sink and floor. Then go through your cabinets and cupboards and get rid of expired medicine and toiletries that aren’t useful anymore.
  • Pantry party. What’s in your pantry? Take a look and throw away expired items and stale food. Donate any canned or non-perishable foods you don’t plan to use.
  • Wipe out, wipe off. Use a multipurpose cleaner to dust, disinfect, and clean surfaces like countertops, door knobs, remotes, and the refrigerator. Then sweep and vacuum.

Spring cleaning is a great way to beat stress. And if you hustle, you’ll raise your heart rate and burn some extra calories, too. Make it a stress-free activity by turning on some music and cleaning a little each day until the place is spotless.

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