Feeling stressed out when you’re home? You might be surprised that a clean home adds peace and reduces stress!
Finding peace in your home is a funny thing – you either have it or you don’t. If you do have it, you feel comfortable, content and can breathe a sigh of relief when you walk in the door.
But if you don’t have it, you feel unsettled, uneasy, and stressed.
Plenty of things could instigate a lack of peace: relational conflict, disliking where you live, or the actual location of your home.
There’s another culprit, though, that robs peace. The solution is a simple one, although not always so easy.
The burden of a mess
For the past six months, a lack of peace at home weighed me down. When I’d wake up, I felt burdened with all I needed to do. When I crawled into bed each night, defeat curled up right alongside me.
My burden was easy to identify: My house was a wreck.
Six months ago, my family found a new home we loved and started the moving process. It had been seven years since our last move, and I was under the delusion that moving would be easy. Now that my children are no longer babies or toddlers, we owned so much more stuff. Stuff I didn’t even realize we had. Stuff that seemed necessary until we boxed it all up, moved it across town, and unpacked it in our new house.
While packing and actually moving out of our old house took three months, the unpacking and settling drug on and on and on. With a filled family schedule, at times I thought our home would stay boxed up forever.
A clean home adds peace
It was in those moments when I thought I would forever look at rooms filled with boxes that I realized I had to force myself to unpack. I desperately needed to set aside time – a half an hour here, fifteen minutes there – to work through my boxes room by room. Not an ounce of me wanted to do any of it. But I needed to do it.
And once I did, I gained momentum. Room by room, my house started to come together. I purged what I didn’t need or what simply didn’t fit. I arranged then rearranged spaces to work for our family. Day by day, the moving boxes and mess gradually disappeared and tidy, ordered rooms emerged.
One week ago, when everything finally came together in its place and my entire house was unpacked and clean, I breathed a sigh of relief.
That relief – and the peace that came with it – hasn’t left.
In fact, I hadn’t realized what a burden all of the mess was until it was gone.
Instead of feeling weighed down, I felt freedom. I actually sleep more soundly and wake up feeling refreshed, subconsciously knowing my home is in order.
Why order brings peace
While I fully believe the Lord adds peace to a home – and you can find peace by inviting Him in – there’s so much to be said for the actual state of your home. If there’s mess and clutter everywhere, you’ll actually add anxiety to your life and cut back on getting a good night of sleep.
Our bodies actually need order to survive. Without order in your human body, your brain wouldn’t be able to control chaotic systems. But your brain’s need for order stretches outside your actual body; when your house is a wreck, the stress hormone cortisol releases. That cortisol makes you feel stressed out. Physiologically speaking, a messy home stresses you out … and a clean home actually calms you.
How to get cleaning
You may know you need to clean your house – and you may want to cut back the stress in your life and live in a tidier place. But what if you feel like you have no time – or simply can’t get the energy to clean?
For starters, you can start looking at chores around your house as a way to help your mental health. The time you spend cleaning will help you reduce your stress.
An interesting twist is that when you’re feeling stressed, getting up and working hard around your house – whether it’s scrubbing or vacuuming – can make you feel better. (Have you ever heard that you should clean your house when you’re angry or frustrated? Try it! It’s a fantastic mood changer.)
Plenty of other motivations can help to get you cleaning, too. As you find the motivation to work, try to make sure everything in your home has a place – and once you use an item, return it to that place. If you feel surrounded by much too much stuff, keep only the things you love or need. And in the process, remind yourself that you’ll actually feel better once you clean.
Struggling with how to actually get things in order? Check out:
- How to Get – and Keep – Your Messy Home Under Control Every Day
- What Should I Clean First?
- How to Clean Your House When You Have No Time
- One Amazingly Powerful Way to Simplify Your Homemaking
- How to Keep Up with Your Home When You Don’t Feel Like Cleaning
- Rescue Your Messy Home with a Homemaking Reset Day
- Caring for Your Home When You’re Overwhelmed
- Forgetting About the “Right” Way to Clean
Like my long, drawn-out cleaning experience, you may not completely clean your house in a day. In fact, if you have a huge mess, it might take weeks or months to complete.
But as you work on it little by little, celebrate your small victories and enjoy the surprising peace that comes with a clean home.
When it comes to finding peace in your own home, is a mess standing in your way? What do you need to clean in your home to add peace and create order?
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All images courtesy of DepositPhotos.