Declutter for your Health
Does This Clutter Make Me Look Fat?
Medical studies have shown that some people who have too much clutter can have too much dust. Too much dust in your home can affect your ability to breathe and can cause allergies and asthma reactions.
Mold and animal dander can also cause asthma and allergies to worsen and too much clutter can create depression. Depression can increase emotional eating and that can cause weight problems. Too much clutter can create a downward spiral that can lead to health problems you don’t want.
Why not avoid these health issues by decluttering your home, office or storage unit?
Here are some helpful tips to help you with downsizing:
- Ask yourself 3 questions: 1) Do I love it? 2) Do I use it? 3) Can someone else use it?
- There is an old saying, “If you haven’t used it or seen it in 6 months to a year, toss it.” When I had to move my mother from her home of 50 years to an assisted living place, I wish she had taken that advice, because we had to clear out her home and two story garage and the work was emotionally and physically grueling. There were so many items that she did not even remember that she had, all of it saved from decades ago, “Just in case…”.
- Do CPR on your closet: Categorize, Purge, Rearrange. Here are some questions to ask yourself when downsizing and organizing your closet:
- Do I love it? If you love it, then keep it! You don’t have to throw everything out, but you also need to consider whether the item is flattering. If not, it should probably go. You can donate the item if it is still in good shape and it will go to someone else who can use something nice to wear.
- Does it reflect who I am today? Perhaps you have a classic business suit that you wore 15 years ago, but it is still in style, sort of and you now work in a retail shop instead of an office. You are no longer living the high powered life you once did and you realized that an easier, less stressful life is where you are at right now. Really, are you going to wear this suit to the flower shop job? Probably not, and if you were ever to get a high powered job again, wouldn’t you have the resources and need to get new suits? Yes, so recycle that suit, so someone else can use it!
- Measure first before buying containers. Another great saying is, “Never Assume”. I can’t tell you how any times I have gone to the container store and bought expensive containers,only to bring them home and realize they didn’t fit anything that I wanted to store. If I had only measured the items first, I could have saved myself many trips and a lot of money. Keep in mind that The Dollar Store can be your best friend, as they have many containers that you might be able to use and at a very low price.
- The Junk Drawer – Why everyone needs one…Everyone needs a junk drawer for all those pens, pencils, batteries, paper clips, rubber bands, or whatever is small enough to fit in the drawer. Did you know that you can organize this drawer by placing similar items into small Dollar Store containers inside that drawer? Yes! Finally an organized junk drawer!
- How many sets of sheets or towels do you need? When we cleaned out my mom’s garage, she had extra sheets and towels in garbage bags, but not all together. One bag was over by the garage door and other bags were in various places throughout the garage. Once we found and counted them all, she had about 15 sets of sheets, and about 20 towels of various colors, sizes and styles. Our family is not that big, she just collected more and more sheets and towels over the years. If you think about it you really only need 3 towels and washcloths per person, 2 sets of sheets per bed (plus one set of each for guests), so that is all we kept for her. In her assisted living place she was going to be living by herself so we kept that in mind when we donated.
- Conquering Paper Clutter – Magazines, Circulars and Newspapers/Instruction manuals and Warranty info/Coupon and Receipt file/Incoming mail/Outgoing recycling/Shredding/Binder or file for Frequently Accessed Papers.
- First of all, check the instruction manuals and warranty info. Do you have manuals for appliances, etc that you still own? My mom had all kinds of this stuff in a garbage bag, in the garage and the manuals and warranty info were for items she had not owned in years. Toss this info…you no longer need it.
- Second, the shredder can be your best friend! As soon as you receive unwanted mail, magazines, etc, you can shred it and recycle it. That way you won’t have any personal information to dispose of. Also, did you know there is a national registry where you can remove your name from getting any junk mail? All you have to do is enter your information to stop unwanted advertising and junk mail.
Don’t wait until you have to move an elderly parent to assisted living. Start now and if you need more ideas on organizing and downsizing, give Moving Forward a call. Or just let the professionals at Moving Forward do it for you! That way you won’t ever have to ask the question, “Does This Clutter Make Me Look Fat?”