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Clutter Bugs

Filed Under: Sexual Health at 9:13 am | By: Susan Coyle, Senior Editor
ClutterI have a frightening love of organization. If something can be categorized, alphabetized or arranged by size, it’s a good bet that I’ve already taken care of it, devoting hours to the removal of its chaos. My books are sorted by genre, then author and then, publication date. My affinity for binders has taken on neurotic proportions, and my need for order has elicited more than one withering remark. I like to imagine that everyone is like this, that every shelf in the nation has a rhyme and reason to its setup, but that’s simply not true. In fact, it’s about as far removed from true as you can get.

Americans are disorganized; they live surrounded by clutter and random assortments of unnecessary items. Busy schedules add to the piles, removing the possibility of enough time to sort through them. Shows, such as Clean Sweep and How Clean Is Your House, highlight the problem, revealing to the general public the country’s most terrifying displays of chaos. The programs focus on ways to organize that will permanently eradicate needless accumulation. They help clutter bugs change their lives and inspire viewers to buy filing cabinets. But they are not the thorough resources they appear to be, for they fail to even mention the most important aspect of disorganization: your ill health.

The accumulation of clutter wears on your wellbeing in numerous ways.  Most obviously, it allows for the generation of dust. You can’t be expected to vacuum when you can’t even walk through the room, so you abandon the idea of cleaning, allowing films of dust to cover the items and create a hotbed of allergens. Once this occurs, you decide that furthering the dirt’s spread would be harmful and so you quickly forget about the things that make up each individual pile, including your running shoes, workout clothes and exercise equipment. There goes the possibility of activity. Already, your clutter has turned you into a sneezing blob of inertia, but the problems don’t stop there. The stress that accompanies disorganization is constant and mounts with every bauble you throw onto the heap of chaos. You have chronic anxiety because of the mess and thus, a weakened immune system.  You are a walking pillar of ill health, who can only be cured by . . . organization.

You need to start cleaning. There are resources available to help you, people willing to do it for you and oodles of suggestions on the best methods.  However, what you really want to remember is to start small. Don’t attempt to reorganize your entire downstairs in one afternoon. Take it drawer by drawer. Forget the emotional attachment to all 45 of your coffee mugs. Throw some out and then, sort your way into wellness.

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