Gretchen observes that "Outer order contributes to inner calm," and many of her resolutions are aimed at
clutter-clearing. Do you agree that clutter affects your happiness?
Join Date: 10/15/10
Join Date: 05/24/11
I absolutely agree; I live in a very small space and it can get cluttered very easily. Returning to this space at the end of the day is not at all relaxing; it creates anxiety. Once I have it straightened out..even if it is not clean, I feel much better.
Join Date: 12/19/12
Clutter adds a lot of anxiety for me as well, sweeney, so I also agreed with this. When a room or surface has clutter it seems chaotic and stressful for me. I rather enjoy the process of organizing and finding a home for everything. It feels relaxing to know everything has a place and a purpose. Life also just seems harder when there's clutter everywhere. Simple things like your kitchen table or your coffee table being full of clutter adds distractions and an obstacle for the surface. When it's cleaned off you don't run into those distractions or need to add an extra step of clearing before you can accomplish a task.
Join Date: 12/07/12
Join Date: 09/26/12
Join Date: 10/16/10
Totally agree, too. My mom has a bunch of "collections" all over her house (everything from buttons to Pez dispensers to dollhouse rooms) and I can't believe how on edge I am when I visit because everything's packed so densely. And it's not that it's disorganized -- just lots of ... stuff.
Join Date: 04/15/11
Yes, but I kind of like organized clutter - things that make a home look lived in rather than as a show place for some one. When a place is too pristine it makes me very nervous and uncomfortable. I like books on flat surfaces as well as on shelves; pictures as well as artwork; pets sleeping on the furniture as well as the floor, and a general feeling of coziness.
Join Date: 04/16/12
Clutter definitely makes me unhappy. I feel better and waste less time looking for things when clutter is absent. I like that Gretchen Rubin identified specific ways that she tackled clutter. They are not the ways that I would, but her approach helped me to realize the importance of looking for specific areas and solutions, rather than a general rule to decrease clutter.
Join Date: 01/07/14
In preparation for selling our home, I cleared off the kitchen counters, recycled many magazines from the coffee table, gave away several pieces of furniture, and created openness in every room. At first it felt like I was living in a model home, but now I like the feel of our home without needless clutter. Since I've de-cluttered, I only spend a short time each day in cleaning the house and I am happier at home..
Join Date: 06/19/12
I'm afraid, unlike everyone above, I'm an accumulator. I have several collections, lots of pictures, and enough books to drive my husband crazy. But i do like the rule that one's possessions should either be useful or loved. I think, using that as a standard, I could do a substantial amount of de-cluttering without digging too deeply into the things that are most meaningful to me (or to him) and that doing so would eliminate a source of occasional tension.
Join Date: 04/24/13
I absolutely agree that clutter affects my happiness. Right now we are in the process of moving out of our house after living here for over 30 years with three growing daughters. Some of their stuff is here, but they are gone now. We are waiting for permits to tear down our house and build a new one. There are packed boxes, and piles of things to sort, and bunches of clutter everywhere. it is a mess, has been that way for a long time, and is making me very anxious and unhappy. I know there is an eventual end in site, but it is very discouraging and frustrating. When everything is this bad it is hard to get the motivation to keep working at it.
I tend to be a neat person, but my husband is not so much. So life with him has been a compromise. Now I'm afraid I have become a more cluttered person, and I am not happy that way at all.
Join Date: 08/29/13
Join Date: 05/12/11
I feel like I waste a lot of energy when things are cluttered. I can get much more done in a shorter amount of time when areas are not cluttered. I could probably be more efficient when my quilt room is not a shambles. But, happy? I don't think so. Procrastinating about important things (tax filing) stays on my mind until I get it done (always late) and that keeps me preoccupied. At my age, children grown, able to travel with my husband, retired, I don't spend much time thinking about my happiness. We both do several volunteer activities and keeps us from being so self absorbed.
Join Date: 07/28/11
Join Date: 04/22/11
Join Date: 03/27/13
I do believe that clutter affects my happiness. This year we downsized to a much smaller home. I looked forward to it as it would necessitate getting rid of many of our things around the house that we don't use or love. (Getting our 8-year-old daughter to declutter was another story.) Our new home is substantially smaller than our previous home, but I can relax and breathe here. I feel as if a weight has been lifted. I'm surrounded only by things we need or enjoy.
Join Date: 06/13/11
Join Date: 01/31/13
I have issues with not being able to purge things and clutter does affect me. I think it is easier to deal with when someone else can help give perspective like the author using her mom to help with clothes. Generally getting rid of non-useful up beloved things can make you happier.
Join Date: 10/04/12
Join Date: 10/04/12
Join Date: 05/24/12
I think I'm happier when I accept a certain level of clutter and don't stress about it too much. It helps to have a clutter free zone in the area of the house most likely to receive guests, but otherwise I just try to do regular decluttering mini-sessions to keep the rest of the place under control.
Join Date: 09/01/11
Join Date: 05/16/11
This is an easy one to go overboard on. I like organized clutter, I do not like driving everyone else crazy in my house by insisting that everything be out of site all the time. It is an easy fix though for people who think they are not happy, get ride of the clutter and miraculously one will see how much better they feel? Really? Is it that simple?
Join Date: 12/06/12
Join Date: 03/22/12
It absolutely affects my sense of well being. I try to keep possessions at a minimum. I live in a large enough space but do not feel every wall needs a picture or every room needs to be filled to capacity to be functional.
I must admit that I do have too many shoes though:) (but they all have a place)
Join Date: 11/28/11
Join Date: 06/13/11
Yes, my husband has a room in our house that I call "the black hole" because when something is put in there it is not to be found again. (Not really, but it does take hours.) The room sometimes makes me very strange. Mostly, I just keep the door closed and try not to think about it.
Join Date: 08/23/11
I totally agree with the ideas about getting rid of clutter. I have found over the years that once I clean out a collection and reorganize I feel like a weight has lifted off my shoulders. I have always found that cleaning reduces stress. Sometimes it's just a way to defuse an anxiety. The clutter of stuff requires so much time in caring for it that the freedom of having more time to go out and do something fun is freeing.
Join Date: 06/13/11
Somewhat. My husband never throws anything away and his "room" is a mess. For years this has bothered me, but now I just shut the door. I am in my 70's and I have learned that it just doesn't matter all that much. I keep the rest of our home fairly clutter free so his "room" is his stuff.
Join Date: 03/06/12
Join Date: 05/01/13
Join Date: 06/13/11
Clutter used to bother me much more when I was younger. Now that my husband has retired and is home all the time, I have learned to live with a little clutter. However, I have a once a month house cleaning service. They don't pick up clutter and will just clean around it. So the day before I do a major clutter cleaning. It makes me feel wonderful after the cleaning ladies have been here and the house is clean and clutter free!
Join Date: 03/20/12
Yes, I agree. My life has gone through different stages of clutter. When my children were young, I had to learn to live with the clutter of toys and children's accessories. I try to leave my husband's desk alone, as his clutter has meaning to him but not to me. I have some personal areas that Cluttered and occasionally I go on sprees of cleaning them up. I like to have surface order that sometimes my life is cluttered underneath the surface.
Join Date: 03/30/14
Absolutely. I find that a cluttered home leads to a cluttered mind--one that is preoccupied and less focused than usual. My Mom always used to say " a place for everything and everything in its place". I didn't understand that clearly as a child but it is my mantra now. Same goes for my desk at work--if it gets messy, I seem to get sloppy and waste time looking for stuff---a real downer and cause of anxiety. Decreasing the clutter increases the happiness for me.
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