Decluttering During Self-isolation

by Samira Shihab, Co-Founder & CEO of Tinkerlust

For about a week now, most of us have been in self-imposed quarantine because of the COVID-19 pandemic. Unfortunately, there’s not much we can do to control the coronavirus except to stay at home. That said, one thing we can do to make ourselves more comfortable and productive is to keep our home tidy and make it a place where we enjoy spending our time.

Being at home all day is the perfect time to make room for a clean and happy home by doing the simple act of decluttering. Taking back control of your home through decluttering will lighten up your mood and give you a positive mindset.

The art of decluttering has been buzzing around the world, but what does it mean? Let’s break it down: Decluttering is an action or a process to decide whether items in your house are valuable or not. Decluttering is part of a minimalist lifestyle that has long been popular in Japan.

Decluttering became mainstream when we were introduced to Tidying Up With Marie Kondo. Kondo is a Japanese cleaning consultant who believes in the revolutionary idea of organizing category by category, instead of room by room. The prime goal of decluttering is not just neatness but a restart in life. The process is about actively selecting items that spark joy in your life and removing what isn’t worth the space. To declutter requires patience and discipline, yet it will be one of the most productive and rewarding activities you can do during your time of self-isolation.

Clutter is the baggage that keeps you from living the life you want to live. Past emotions can be slowly let go by removing physical items. According to a study from UCLA, there is a direct link between the stress hormone cortisol and clutter. When your surroundings are messy, it tends to increase stress levels, as living in a cluttered home can impact your inner self and raise negative emotions. With this virus leaving us uncertain about many aspects of our lives, decluttering is a great way to put things back into our control and make us ready to strive forward.

Living in a neat and clean environment is an act of self-care impacting your wellbeing and quality of life. You continually focus on what’s important and prioritize things of real value. It’s a lesson on future decision-making, as you differentiate between what you need and what you want.

Additionally, decluttering has financial perks. You can sell items you choose to let go of to earn some money on second-hand online marketplaces. For now, only engage with ones that offer free pick-up services directly to your home. For the items you can’t sell now, simply store them in a box and have them ready to be removed at a later date.

In these weeks ahead, while you’re at home and wondering how to spend your time, rather than binge-watching the next Netflix series, start sorting out and decluttering your space to make room for positive energy and space to breathe. Maximize your happiness by narrowing down what really matters to you. By following this exercise, you’ll be grateful for the most important things that you already have around you. Wake up in a place where you enjoy being, so you continue the positive and happy mindset through the days of self-isolation.


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