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  • Writer's picturerebecca's home sort

the stress of mess.

As I start to write this post, I am sitting on the sofa with my children watching CBeebies… It’s the post nursery slump (or should I say grump) where my eldest needs a rest (and snacks) and my youngest (having just woken from her nap) is running riot but might stay still for a few minutes if I put the television on. And right now I want them to sit still. I need them to sit still. No word of a lie, five minutes ago this happened (photo below), and now I feel like my head is going to explode!

Sometimes I really wish that mess and chaos didn’t bother me so much. I imagine I would be this laid back, relaxed person…simply too busy having fun and enjoying life to worry about order and tidiness. But no!

If I’m honest, whilst I started with the example of the toy mess… the kids toys don’t actually bother me as much as other disorder around the house does - because I can easily put toys away pretty quickly once the kids are in bed. It’s the other areas like the kitchen, the spare room (aka ‘the dumping ground’), wardrobes, drawers, general clutter left on top of most surfaces, and ‘the cupboard of doom’ (yes we’ve all got one) that cause my blood pressure to rise, my patience to run out, and I feel this low level but constant anxiety and uneasiness building up inside me.

The week before I launched my business my anxiety levels were sky high. I had to ignore and let go of ‘staying on top of the house’ (which I normally do in a machine-like fashion) in order to use every spare minute with my husband making tweaks to website copy, branding etc etc. So during that week Rebecca’s Home was most certainly not Sorted!

But now it is sorted. Order has been restored, calm reclaimed, and I’m starting to feel in control of my home (and my life) again, because for me that’s important. I am most definitely a control freak (always have been), and as my sister always calls me - a neat freak. Melodramatic as it may sound, when I’m surrounded by mess or clutter I just feel totally overwhelmed and out of control.

This is not unusual though. Anxiety and stress around clutter and mess is extremely common; ‘messy bed messy head’, ‘tidy home tidy mind’, it’s true!

Clutter does not help us relax, but having a clutter free space actually helps us do what we need to do without feeling bogged down. Without clutter and chaos you feel free, like a weight has been lifted off your shoulders. You feel energised and more productive, yet also at peace.

Since having children it's obviously quite rare to get any time to myself, but when Fin does take both kids out for a few hours to give me a ‘break’ - how do I choose to use this ‘break’? A nap? A bath? Sit and read a book, watch Netflix, paint my nails? No of course not… I run around the house on yet another crazed sort out and declutter session! I know it means I will be worn out (not to mention hot and sweaty) when the family all arrive home, but do you know what…I love it! It is so rewarding. It makes me feel better, happier and more in control. I even recently heard someone on a podcast refer to ‘having a good old sort out’ as an act of self care - so there you go, perhaps I’m not so crazy after all.

An organised home can have benefits on your state of mind, your health, and your confidence, because when one part of your life is organised, everything else just tends to fall into place.

And breathe.

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