“Clutter is not just physical stuff. It’s old ideas, toxic relationships, and bad habits. It’s anything that does not support your better self.” ~ Eleanor Brown
I am a HUGE advocate for cleaning and decluttering your living environment in the name of happiness.
When we are surrounded by stuff, that stuff is always on our minds. The need to take care of it weighs on us heavily and takes up space in our minds. Space that could be used to be creative, to plan, or simply relax.
I am not saying that everybody's homes should be spotless and minimal, and I acknowledge that some people thrive in clutter. But I also know that when people with cluttered spaces clean it up - they feel like they can breathe again. They are excited by new possibilities. So that goes to show that (and this is a hot take), just maybe, people who claim they love the clutter are simply making excuses.
OUCH! That's a bold claim. But each of us makes excuses for things we don't want to face. I make excuses not to go to the doctor. I have terrible white coat syndrome, and I don't want to go. So, please don't think I am taking a holier than thou stance. We each have excuses for something.
But let's get back to clutter and the mind.
You know those times in your life when you're working on something big, like moving, getting married, having kids, starting something new, or working on a big project? The number of things you have to do can feel insurmountable! But if you take all of the things you need to do and make a list, everything gets more organized. You have a plan, and you can work that plan.
It's the same way with your mind, your home, and your happiness. The more organized your outer environment, the more organized your inner environment. The more organized your inner environment, the more space you have to do things and to think in ways that make you happy!
When I was 18 years old, I got a "job" selling Kirby vacuums door to door. (It was horrible.) I remember in training, they taught you to use the vacuum on the customer's carpet and show them how much dirt and nastiness they were living with. They said that if a lot of dirt came up, it would be obvious to the customer that they needed that vacuum. But then they said, and here's the kicker, that if not much dirt came up to still act like it was gross because if they didn't have a lot of dirt on their carpets, it meant they cleaned regularly, and they would be shocked by how much dirt they still had.
Yikes! My point is this... if you have a lot or a little clutter in your home, taking care of something is an improvement - even decluttering a drawer is a win. If you have a little clutter, you'll probably see the little bit of clutter you have as a problem, so taking care of that clutter will be an improvement. It's all relative.
Set a 10-minute timer and see how much stuff you can grab to get rid of. It'll feel good to release those things from your life, and you will free up more space for your happiness.