Saturday, July 06, 2013

Purge Mode

Too.  Much.  Stuff.

Although there are plenty of more pressing tasks on the to-do list, I am distracted by my desire to de-clutter.  The yard needs to be simplified so there's less weeding and work out there.  But mostly I want to thin what's in cupboards, bookshelves, closets, and storage areas.  Flea market at church is in six weeks; hopefully I'll have a good pile for Maggie to hawk while I'm at work that day.

So it was timely to read an article on what clutter does to the mind.  [Hat tip: Cheryl.]  It helps me recognize why it's so hard to declutter; there is a neurological response in the brain which registers pain when getting rid of an object to which you are attached.  The article also shows that there really is stress and problems-with-focus from having too much clutter; it's not just silly me feeling overwhelmed.

I think this also explains one of the reasons vacation can be so relaxing.  If you're away from home there is usually less clutter.  The place you're staying probably has less stuff in the kitchen; you have fewer clothes to choose from; while you're away, housekeeping projects are not piled up demanding your attention.  For me, the escape-from-clutter is probably the most relaxing part of any vacation trip.

Conundrum of the month:  it's so much work to de-clutter.  And it clutters the brain to make de-cluttering decisions.  Uh ... no pain, no gain???


  1. Since you're on the topic of how the brain works and how different activities affect the brain, I just ran into this article on Princeton University's website, and thought I'd share:

    The gist is: exercise is really good for you and helps to reduce stress. But how it happens is pretty cool.

  2. Photographs. If I throw away a photograph, it's like throwing away (fill in the blank)!

    Jane S.

  3. You know what I'd love to do? (Well, love and hate...) I would like to sort through old photos and choose the nice ones, the good ones, the especially-representative ones, and gather them into just a couple photo albums. Honestly, as much as I love photo albums, I seldom look at them because there are just too many to browse through.

    But sorting through pictures is one of those things that is way-low priority compared to supper, laundry, weeding, reading, and [sigh] even Facebook.

  4. And I'll bet your pictures would *not* fit into just a *couple* of photo albums :(


  5. At one point, we did choose the best and most-representative pictures and put them in an album. My reasoning was that the pictures were in the back room in the basement, and if there was a house-fire, I wanted to have one album upstairs to grab on my way out of the house. (Okay, maybe that's dumb. But it also provided ONE album for handy viewing.) That's what I would like to do again, but include 30 years instead of just 15.