When we tidy up, it gives us a sense of control and happiness. We can reorganize our space to make it look more organized and tidy, which makes us feel more in control. Tidy spaces also make us feel more comfortable and safe. When everything is in its place, it’s easier to find what we’re looking for. Tidy people also tend to be more productive and efficient, which makes them happy.
Mountains of odds and ends, too many clothes and still boxes in the basement whose contents nobody knows anymore? Why does this make us so unhappy and how do we manage to finally create lasting order?
Order makes you happy – everyone agrees on that. But why actually?
There is something inherently satisfying about following a set order: it gives us a sense of control and predictability. And, as anyone who has ever tried to juggle multiple tasks at once knows, order can be a powerful motivator. Researchers at the University of Utah found that when people are given a task to complete in an orderly fashion, they are more likely to complete the task than when it is given out in a disordered fashion. In other words, order makes us happy because it gives us a sense of control and predictability.
If chaos rages around us, it also has something to do with us. Tidying up is no longer just about arranging our belongings. It goes deeper. “Visible clutter distracts us from the true cause of the clutter,” says Marie Kondo. Millions of people around the world now believe in the cleansing effect of cleaning up the psyche. How is the experience in this country? We ask someone who should know: is a clean-up coach in Berlin and the surrounding area. For more than ten years she has been helping others to clear out and thus create an order that makes and stays happy.
EMOTION: Ms. Schilke, why does disorder stress us so much?
Rita Schilke: Chaos and disorder around us often mean a great burden for us, because we always have to ignore too many things in order to get to the essentials that we “actually” want to do. For example, if the shelves in the kitchen are full of food, pots and cups, we cannot cook the dish we have in mind. The chaos around us means ballast and puts pressure on us. We always have the feeling “I still have to clean up”.
If we all know that clutter and accumulation of things make our lives so difficult, why do we do it anyway?
A lot of people just haven’t learned how to tidy up. They suffer from the clutter but cannot manage to get rid of it.
So the proverbial mountain in front of which one stands.
Yes, too much stuff also means the mountain is too high to start with. Some are also extremely busy with work and family. Finally, there are people with physical or mental disabilities who find it difficult to tidy up themselves or who cannot let go.
Studies came to the conclusion that people in untidy surroundings tend to eat unhealthily – how can that be explained?
The care and awareness of my apartment or house is often a reflection of how I treat myself. Your own health is neglected. People don’t take care of themselves. They are always in a hurry and want to do something for others rather than for themselves.
I have an old racing bike in my basement and for years I’ve been planning to ride it again, but I don’t. Should it rather go?
I often find sports equipment, kitchen appliances or musical instruments that have not been used for a long time at my customers’. That provokes my questions: “How long has it been since you played the instrument or used the sports equipment? Are you planning to start again? If so, when?” My questions encourage honest reflection. My recommendation is: yes, the sports equipment or musical instrument should go, especially if you need space for things that you are currently using. If there is enough space, things can stay. Always remember: shedding ballast is good for the soul.
You mean the emotional baggage?
Right. Many things we are attached to stem from days gone by. They stand for a very specific time in our past. For example, the super chic jeans that no longer suit me recall the time when I would go out every night and enjoy the party time. Letting go, saying goodbye, separating is associated with loss and hurts. It’s not the things themselves, but the memories associated with them. So it can be helpful to consciously appreciate, remember and then let go of a part. Holding on to the past often means not being ready for the present and new experiences, a new love.
When I finally decide to declutter, what’s the best way to avoid frustration and maybe giving up?
It is helpful to first be aware of what bothers you the most, where the shoe pinches the most. Then I encourage them to develop a vision: “What do I want the cleanup to be like? How will I feel? What will I particularly enjoy?” That motivates immensely. Small, realistic goals help you to achieve them and motivate you to keep going. This in turn makes us happy because our brain releases dopamine as a reward! It is important to start positively. Instead of a negative “I’ll never make it” it’s better to think “after the first drawer I’ll make another one”. Then comes the concrete plan of how to proceed. In my practice, a period of three hours has proven very useful. I completely clear out a certain area, such as a drawer or a cupboard, and examine each part as to what should be done with it. It’s even more fun in a team with a friend or with the support of a tidying coach.
Does everything have to go or are there things that can stay?
With the things that are sorted out, it is always important to answer the following questions:
- Do I still like it? do i like it
- When was the last time I used or put it on?
- is it intact Or does it need to be repaired?
- Do I have a good place for this?
- would i miss it
Anything close to your heart can stay. It is then important to find a good place for the selected things. A treasure chest is also conceivable, which is set up with selected memorabilia that you have grown fond of, such as the first love letter, or a nice photo of my deceased mother or grandma, the first milk tooth that has fallen out. So I can enjoy the things that are really important to me.
And when does clinging to old things become problematic?
Many people find it difficult to let go because things represent past experiences and relationships to them. Instead of facing the present with joy and enthusiasm, they remain in the past, which is paralyzing and can make you melancholy. This often results in shelves and closets overflowing with no room for current activities. In the worst case, even the bed or the sofa has to be cleared. So it becomes problematic when we keep things that we don’t use at all and even buy more and more.
But often the joy of new things doesn’t last that long and we buy something again.
Yes, and so gradually everything clogs up. I keep hearing the thought “I might need it again”. This is difficult when there is not enough space. My motto: only keep things that you can store away easily.
More space also means more space for positive thoughts and creativity?
Yes, in any case. In a tidy apartment I can concentrate on the present and am free to try new things. My thoughts can roam freely and do not get stuck on stacks of newspapers or pieces of clothing lying around.
Everyone is a different type of order, some claim to need chaos for creativity – what distinctions are there?
What is particularly important to individual people when it comes to order can be very different. In principle, the following order types can be distinguished from my experience:
- The security type: For a person with a high need for security, it is important to have everything under control, to know what is in their possession and where it is. Then it is also important to secure data and always have it accessible
- The minimalists: minimalists are concerned with furnishing and arranging their environment as spartan as possible. Nothing superfluous is lying around. They only surround themselves with what is really necessary
- The aesthet: aesthet:innen is primarily concerned with an appealing design. Selected objects are effectively arranged and given a special place. The overall impression is important. The interplay of colors and shapes is in the foreground. Nothing superfluous is lying around here either
For people who say they need chaos to be creative, the limit is when they can’t find the things they need.
How do you manage to keep order, lightness and maybe happiness?
Some principles and rituals help maintain order once established. That can be fun too! There is lightness. It is helpful if everything has its own place: the key on the key board, the coffee jar in the kitchen cupboard above the kettle, the TV guide on the shelf, etc. Then things always go back to their place immediately after use. Rituals with small, regular tidying up activities cause little stress and always restore order: before going to bed, parents and children (or they alone if they are older) put the toys back in the children’s room, etc. It is therefore important to get things done right away . The prerequisite is that a beautiful, harmonious basic order is established.
”Does organizing make you happy?”
It can be hard to keep everything organized when there are many things demanding your attention. However, being organized can benefit your health and help you feel happier and more relaxed. Disorganization can wreak havoc on your life. It can lead to an increased stress level and depression.
The answer to this question is a little more complicated than one might think. There are a few things to consider when answering this question. The first is whether or not organizing makes you happy in the moment. If it does, then it is definitely worth doing. However, if it doesn’t make you happy in the moment, then it may not be worth the time and effort.
The second thing to consider is whether or not organizing makes you happier over time. If it does, then it is definitely worth doing. However, if it doesn’t make you happier over time, then it may not be worth the time and effort. It is important to remember that happiness is subjective, so what may make one person happy, may not make another person happy.
The last thing to consider is whether or not organizing makes you happier in the long run. If it does, then it is definitely worth doing. However, if it doesn’t make you happier in the long run, then it may not be worth the time and effort. Again, happiness is subjective, so what may make one person happy, may not make another person happy.
All in all, organizing may not make everyone happy, but it can definitely make some people happy. If it makes you happy, then it is definitely worth doing. However, if it doesn’t make you happy, then it may not be worth the time and effort.
Why does it feel so good to declutter?
If you’re looking for an easy way to reduce stress, decluttering your environment may be a good place to start. Getting rid of excess stuff can benefit your mental health by making you feel calmer, happier, and more in control. A tidier space can make for a more relaxed mind.
When you declutter, you free up space in your home and mind. You feel more organized and in control. You gain a sense of peace and order. And you get to enjoy your belongings more because they are in more manageable and accessible places.
Why do I enjoy cleaning so much?
Cleaning gives you a sense of accomplishment because there’s a beginning, a process, and a result. Being in a clean space can be both emotionally calming and uplifting. The physical activity of cleaning can relieve stress and be a bit of a workout.
I enjoy cleaning because it is a mindless task that I can do while listening to music or watching TV. It also gives me a sense of accomplishment when I finish a cleaning task.
Why am I obsessed with cleaning and organizing?
For many patients, obsessive thoughts revolve around germs, which makes the compulsions manifest as obsessive cleaning. People with OCD may also feel the need to organize everything to make sense of their thoughts. However, the symptoms are still the obsessions and compulsions, not the cleaning itself.
I have always been a bit obsessive when it comes to cleaning and organizing. It seems like something that I need to do to feel good about myself and to have a tidy space. I have always been a bit of a perfectionist when it comes to my home and I hate feeling like there is clutter anywhere. I love the feeling of everything being in its place and knowing that I have made a concerted effort to keep my home clean and organized.
Why Being tidy is important?
Believe it or not, being tidy can actually improve your health. Having a clear space to work in has been shown to make us want to eat more healthily! Clutter is tiring, and makes us more likely to reach for comfort foods rather than healthy, nutritious options.
The benefits of tidiness are many. It can help prevent stress and anxiety, because it can help to bring order to one’s life. It can also help to improve one’s mental well-being, because it can lead to a sense of control and mastery over one’s environment. tidiness can also help to reduce the amount of time that one spends on chores and can lead to a more organized lifestyle. Finally, tidiness can help to create a more pleasant and relaxing environment, because it can reduce the amount of clutter and chaos in one’s surroundings.