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Renewing our Home and Mind

Tuesday, 20 May 2014 05:36  by Emily S.

Spring is now in full bloom, from the budding flowers and blossoming trees to the smell of fresh cut grass. This is the time where we become increasingly active after feeling confined indoors for most of the winter. It’s like a fresh new start. Many of us exemplify this fresh new start by working on organization and the infamous “spring-cleaning.”

Spring-cleaning is not only good for our home and closet, but also for our health. When we eliminate clutter and items that we no longer have use for we are also eliminating stress. Disorganization contributes to stress and anxiety by making us feel out of control. Clutter in our outward life often indicates clutter in our internal life.

Identify the two rooms in your house where most of your time is spent. Ask yourself how you feel when you are in those rooms. Do you feel comfort and clarity or do you feel overwhelmed and anxious? Our homes should be an oasis, a place where we can unwind and relax from the hustle and bustle of everyday life. When we can take charge of the external chaos in our life it can change the way we think and feel.

Here are some easy tips to spruce up your home in a matter of minutes:

  • Front door storage: Most of the time the front entrance takes the brunt of our clutter. When we walk in we take off our shoes, coats and bags, trying to figure out what to do with the stack of mostly useless mail. Placing shoe racks at the front door is a great way to de-clutter and sort. Each slot can be used for easy access to something other than shoes, including keys, mail and the dog’s leash. And for the jackets and coats, wall hangers are perfect and can also add character to a room as a beautiful decorative piece.
  • Avoid tables: Small items add up like crazy on kitchen and living room tables. One piece of paper quickly turns into 10 pieces of paper, pens, markers, loose change and bills. Refusing to place these items on any table is the best way to avoid small clutter. Folders for the paper and bills, drawers for the pens and a jar for extra pennies are super simple changes that keep the table dinner-ready.
  • Pictures: Before the day of digital cameras, printing pictures was the only way to view your precious memories. If you are anything like me, you probably have a billion pictures thrown about in boxes and half-done scrapbooks. Organizing these into many large photo albums is probably the best way to store and de-clutter, allowing easy access to your fondest memories. If that seems too daunting, start by at least throwing away the useless photos, then stack them all into one or two (or 5 if needed) plastic boxes. Putting photos in one place is a great first step to fully organizing them.

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