Is living in an organized home really a component of wellness? Okay, let’s try something: Imagine a space that you use or see every single day. Maybe it’s your bedside table, your pantry, your desk at work, your car, or you kids’ playroom. Really take it – and how it makes you feel – in. Now imagine that we’ve magically transformed it; the stack of unread books and reading glasses and remotes have been taken off the bedside table, the pantry has been organized so that everything can be easily found – and put away, your desk is clear, the car actually almost kind of looks like it did right after you bought it, and the playroom suddenly only has the toys that your kids really love, so that when they are there they don’t feel overwhelmed, but instead can really play. Now close your eyes and take a long, deep breath and imagine this transformed space that you use every day. It just feels better and calmer, doesn’t it?
We are deeply affected by the spaces around us. Every day. All the time. You walk into a restaurant and feel happy or energized (or not), into a new friend’s home and feel instanstantly warm and welcome. Now how do you feel when you walk into your own home? I remember years ago when Queen Oprah said that “your home should rise up to meet you.” At the time, living in a New York City apartment and with a tiny budget, I already knew that my space had a huge impact on the way I felt every day and this quote resonated with me deeply. My kitchen might have been the size of a walk in closet, but if my apartment was tidy and clean-ish and I splurged on a $5.00 bunch of daisies, coming home felt good and calm and like a refuge from my zany city-girl life.
And it’s exactly the same now, but of course on a larger scale with a family and a dog and a house. And all the things that come with that life. Walking in the door should feel good every single time, shouldn’t it? Our homes should rise up to meet us and be a place that feels like a refuge from the rest of the world.
I knew this was true for me, but since I started working with clients, I now see it over and over again. It’s amazing to walk into a client’s home and feel the stress and anxiety they are experiencing because things have somehow taken over some part of their lives. More things almost never mean more happiness, but we live in a culture – and in a place – where it can often feel like that’s the case.
But once we declutter and pare down and organize a space that has felt overwhelming and bothered them every single day, there is a lightness that comes from that. And it is magic. Letting go of things that don’t make us feel good is powerful and instantly makes us feel calmer. I love what I do so much because I get to be help a client check something off their list that has been there for ages and be a part of the happiness they feel when they take back control of their space.
So yes, living in a space that is organized and makes you feel good really does feel like wellness to me.