D. Lopez, This week in the garden

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When I was a child, my parents organized housework “parties”. These events focused on cooking, cleaning and gardening. The price of being part of a large family was greater damage everywhere. Oddly enough, some of my fondest memories contain times of working together on a summer morning or a few days before the holidays.

The work on the home front was not thankless, we were all proud of ourselves for the creative results. Even when alone, there is a calming feeling that everything is in order.

Remembering all the heartwarming pizza and beer parties promised, the tradition continues. What other clever incentives can we create to coax us, our family members, into doing the chores? This writing is prompted by complaints from others about unfinished business. When complacency isn’t enough motivation, or we put things off because we’d rather do something else, nothing gets done.

In PsychologyToday, an article mentions that our environment reflects our state of mind. It is also possible that an organized environment influences our mood. According to Nobel laureate Judy Dutton, those who make their bed in the morning are more likely to be happier. After taking a survey, here are the results: “59% of people don’t make their bed. 27% do it, while 12% pay a cleaner to do it for them… 71% of bed makers consider themselves happy; while 62% of people who don’t make a bed admit to being unhappy. She didn’t conclude that all non-bed makers were unhappy, but chances were they were just unhappy. By the way, she admitted that she does not make a bed herself, but was ready to try after analyzing the results.

There is no judgment on my part if I walk into your house and the dishes need to be washed, the clothes are on the bed, there are piles of things on the counters and floors. I went there, it’s done. I’ve met people who are groomed like pins, but their house gets hit by a tornado. It is a message for me that the person has a conflicting public and private life. If it doesn’t align with their values, most people apologize and acknowledge that their house is a mess. It is to these people that I extend my hand in support.

Here are some incentives for tidying up your personal spaces: 1. It’s worth taking care of your purchases, its hard-earned money; 2. We tend to have fewer lost items; 3. We feel calmer, our space is welcoming to ourselves; 4. We are ready to socialize in the blink of an eye, without embarrassment; 5. Small messes are easier and faster to put away than stacks.

Begin. If things have gotten out of control, the task force is the way to go. Asking a friend for help, hiring an outside service, asking family members to choose an indoor/outdoor work day, will quickly change a situation.

When I was a young adult, leaving the house was my first lesson in trying to keep everything in order. This was mostly not the case. At the time, I had a 1969 Chevy Nova hatchback that became my dumping ground. Between shopping and trips to the laundromat, this back area was full of scattered clothes and pantry items. That’s not how I was raised. Dealing with daytime stress was interfering with my ability to confront my personal habits. Luckily my buddy helped me clean my back. When we ask for help and get it, it can be an experience of bonding with others.

Now that I’m older, my own damage will stress me out, so I’m tidy. Occasional damage is sometimes a sign of relaxation. We can say “not today” and feel comfortable. There are also psychological conditions in which a person suffers from excessive cleaning due to obsessive-compulsive disorder or mysophobia, an extreme fear of germs. Somewhere there is a middle ground for having an organized space, where either extreme does not disrupt our lives.

An organized environment subtly helps us to be comfortable, even from a distance. Does having a messy space mean you have a messy mind? This can mean a variety of things according to board-certified science writer Emily Swaim. It could mean that we don’t have time for ourselves. This may indicate depression. We may be overwhelmed. Some people accumulate and need help. Changes in our state of health can also create temporary conditions. Then again, a bizarre study suggested that messy rooms boost creativity. Some people simply have a personality that thrives on clutter.

Overall, the study found that more orderly people also had other healthy habits and made better health choices. Thinking about our lifestyle habits, how tidy are we today? Judgment aside, clean or messy, I’ll always have iced tea with you, but let me know if I can help.

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