Unwinding in a clean and clutter-free house can boost mental wellbeing and refresh the mind. Household chores rarely thrill most of us. The very thought of all that domestic cleaning, dusting, polishing, tidying and laundry can be overwhelming.
It can even be all too tempting to ponder “what is the point” when you feel that it will all be back to square one in no time, and you’ll just have to start all over again.
For people with existing mental health conditions, cleaning can become an even bigger challenge. Yet, the benefits of living in a tidy, fresh and sparkling environment are backed by research.
How clutter and mess can be draining for mental wellbeing
There are two distinct strands to an untidy, unclean house and how it can impact our mental wellbeing – clutter and mess. Clutter is all the stuff that hasn’t been put away or doesn’t have a “home” within your house. There have been many studies to demonstrate that clutter can negatively impact our mental health. It can increase stress, confusion and tension, leading us to lose focus on essential areas in our lives.
Mess is all the unclean, dirty or just less than spotless areas within the home.
Having a clean home has been found to improve our mood and lead to feelings of satisfaction, accomplishment and reduced anxiety. An untidy house can cause us to feel shame, inadequacy and the effort to feel less stressed by cleaning a messy home (or even the idea of cleaning a messy home) can lead to us feeling even more stressed.
What the science says about clutter, mess and mental health
A study published in Personality and Social Psychology Bulletin found that woman who described their homes as uncluttered were less likely too fatigued and depressed. Researchers at Princeton University found that clutter can make it difficult to focus on specific tasks. Meanwhile, a paper published in the Environment and Behaviour Journal suggested that clutter can have a cumulative effect, causing us to implement negative coping strategies such as eating junk food and bingeing on TV shows, which can make the situation worse.
People with clean houses are healthier than those with messier ones. That’s according to research by a professor at Indiana University. Moreover, if you’re a parent , a survey has shown that having a messy home can cause more stress than anything else. Researchers have even found a link between clean environments and a desire to do the right thing. A study published in the journal Psychological Science found that participants subject to a messy environment were less likely to feel charitable towards others and make healthy choices.
Refresh your mind with a clean and decluttered home
Some people are simply messier than others. However, if you’re usually a neat person, then an unclean house could be a sign that your mental health is in a tough spot.
Whether you’re struggling with depression, anxiety or stress, living in a clean house can have many mental health benefits.
Your home should be your most prominent mental health support system. Why not hire some help to allow you space and freedom to do so? Even a one-off, deep clean to give you a fresh start can be an enormous help, followed by smaller, regular visits if you hire a cleaner. get in touch to find out how we can help you achieve a clean home that will be good for the mind and the soul.