March 18, 2022/Daily Health Stories

Declutter Your Home, Destress Your Mind

A psychologist shares her thoughts on cleaning and organizing and how they can help manage stress.

FOR MEDIA Declutter Your Home, Destress Your Mind

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CLEVELAND – Who doesn’t love a clean, organized space? It turns out decluttering your home may declutter your mind as well.

Dawn Potter, PsyD, of Cleveland Clinic said some people find cleaning is a good way to manage stress.

“A lot of people, when they are faced with other problems that maybe they can’t address at the time, or they’re just kind of overwhelmed, they find that cleaning helps them restore a sense of control,” she said.

Research shows messy, disorganized spaces can negatively impact mental health and wellbeing.

One study suggests people with cluttered homes were more likely to report depressed moods.

Dr. Potter said when everything around you is neat and tidy, there are fewer distractions and you can better focus on the task at hand.

She adds that tidying up can take your mind off of something that’s out of your control and making you anxious.

“Cleaning produces a tangible result that we can see and feel,” said Dr. Potter. “And we can look at it afterwards and be like, “Oh, that looks so great.” So we get that satisfaction of doing something meaningful.”

If you’re inspired to organize but aren’t sure where to begin, Dr. Potter recommends creating a plan of attack and just getting started. She also advises setting reasonable expectations and not pressuring yourself to get everything done at once.

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