Story by: Jennifer Reynolds on March 24, 2017
Chew on this: Clutter is stuff. But clutter is never about stuff.
Professional organizer Peter Walsh will be Norton Healthcare’s next Go Confidently speaker on Monday, April 17. Walsh is known around the globe from his TLC series “Clean Sweep,” his appearances on “The Oprah Winfrey Show” and his collection of books on decluttering and getting organized.
His practical advice on cleaning up your home and your life for better health and happiness is needed now more than ever as we navigate a world of overconsumption. Too much buying, too much stuff, too much food, too much to do. Consumption turns into clutter, and clutter is killing us.
“It’s a false notion that more is better or that material things amount to happiness,” Walsh said. “Stuff can end up owning you, and all of a sudden you’re robbed of peace of mind, calm, being centered — and that’s where everything goes off the rails.”
How does clutter impact physical health? The stress caused by living in a cluttered environment can elevate hormones that cause the body to hold on to excess weight.
In Walsh’s book “Lose the Clutter, Lose the Weight: The Six-Week Total-Life Slim Down,” he cites a study that found people whose houses were considered very cluttered were 77 percent more likely to be overweight.
“Clutter and being overweight reflect our too-busy lifestyle,” he said. “We buy too much stuff, eat too much food and don’t pay attention to the state of our bodies or our homes.”
Clutter also can worsen allergies and asthma because of added dust and dander. In addition, clutter can cause physical manifestations of mental health issues, such as anxiety or depression.
To gain control of your clutter, begin by removing items from your home that are not meaningful. Your possessions should bring you joy and comfort. If they don’t, you don’t need them.
“If the stuff in your home doesn’t make your heart sing, what’s it doing in your most intimate of spaces?” he said.
Once clutter is removed, you will find it easier to take better care of yourself. You will have more energy, a more positive attitude, and you’ll be more in tune with your body and what you’re putting into it.
“It all comes down to having a space that creates the life that you want,” Walsh said.
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