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How Clutter Impacts Your Health

By Stepy Kamei

Most of us have been guilty of letting some form of clutter pile up in our lives at some point or another. When we're faced with the demands and responsibilities thrust upon us by family, friends, and work, it sometimes becomes too much of a difficult task to maintain our level of organization. As a result, our desks, bedside tables, cars, kitchens, offices, etc., start to take on piles of clutter and junk. We always mean to get around to clearing up these piles of junk, but for many of us, procrastination sets in. This often leads to a cycle of wanting to avoid the issue because of how bad it seems, leading us to only make the clutter even more ... well, cluttered -- until we're finally forced to clear it all away in order to get anything done.

The important thing to keep in mind about getting messy is that it's not just an inconvenience; it can be downright problematic to your physical and mental health and well-being. Taking the time to learn all about how to clear up the clutter in your life isn't just a useful life hack; it may be downright necessary for improving your sense of wellness. 

The Negative Impacts Clutter Can Have on the Mind and Body

If you tend to look at a pile of clutter and think of it as no big deal, you should start viewing it as the threat to your health that it really is. When it comes to your mental health and wellness, clutter and junk can really take its toll. Many people report feeling higher amounts of stress and anxiety when placed in environments which were filled with clutter. What's more, levels of productivity also tended to decrease in these types of settings. Studies have found that a person exposed to clutter tends to experience too much stimulation for the brain to be able to adequately process what's happening around them. Frighteningly enough, clutter can also lead to the development of sleep issues such as insomnia, as well as an increase of inflammation and general fatigue. 

If you're able to admit that you've let clutter get the better of you, know that you have the ability to do something about this and take back control. You may want to start off simple, by cleaning up your email inbox. From here, focus on one area at a time -- one shelf of your pantry, or one drawer in your desk, to start. Spend 15 minutes a day and see how clutter-free you've become in a month.

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