3 Reasons Why Cleaning Can Improve Your Mood

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I know the feeling of dread you get as soon as you think about cleaning your house. You may start to ignore dirty dishes in the sink and piles of laundry, thinking they’ll just get cleaned another day—but they only get worse. Housework may be the last thing you want to do when you're battling negative emotions, but the one thing we all have power over is what happens next. You can either crawl under your blanket and stay there forever... or you can make a choice to do something just because it feels good. And what feels good, research shows, is decluttering your house.

Cleaning is meditative

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It's true—the thought of cleaning (or any unpleasant task) can be very anxiety-inducing. But once you get going, you might find that cleaning can actually be a relaxing experience.  In fact, it’s possible to turn cleaning into a meditative experience. Studies have shown that mindfulness is all about conscious awareness, so you're able to tune out the stress of the outside world while focusing on accomplishing one task at a time. And research from Psycom has shown that this kind of focus can actually be beneficial for your mental health!

Clutter increases stress hormone

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We all know that clutter can be stressful, but did you know that it can actually increase your cortisol levels? You read that right: the same hormone that's associated with stress can be triggered by a messy space.

A study by UCLA found a link between a high density of household objects and elevated cortisol. Messy spaces signal the need for future cleaning, and the mental weight of knowing it needs to be addressed increases stress.

The key to keeping your home clean and clutter-free is to stay on top of things as they come in-if you let clutter pile up, it will start to feel overwhelming. You don't have to get rid of everything at once! Just make sure your house is always clean enough for you to sit down on the couch with a cup of tea and relax. When you do feel like decluttering, start by going through one small area at a time--maybe just one shelf or one drawer-and getting rid of anything that's not useful or meaningful to you anymore.

You're in control of your environment 

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When people feel like their life is out of control or they are struggling with some uncertainties, cleaning can be a way to assert some control in their life. Cleaning gives people a sense of mastery and control over their environment.

In fact, a study by the University of Connecticut found that in times of high stress, people default to repetitive behaviors like cleaning because it gives them a sense of control during a chaotic time.5

We all know that clutter and disorganization can be really distracting and make it hard to focus or complete other projects. You might find that you get frustrated when things don't go according to plan- your mind and body probably wants to bring some order to your environment. Cleaning can also help you get back on track with your goals, whether that's staying on top of a big project or just getting enough sleep.

Want to feel more at ease? Use plant-based products

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One of the ways to keep your house clean is to keep it smelling amazing. Candles and air freshener sprays are a great way to bring some ambiance into your home; however, most of them bring toxic chemicals into your home. The best way to ensure that you’re not bringing chemicals into your home is by looking for non-toxic fragrances like our 100% plant-based candle and sprays with full ingredient transparency!

What does this mean for you? Well, it means that when you light up your favorite pomegrante-scented candle and let it burn for a few hours, you won't have to worry about what kind of chemicals are wafting through your house. And when you spray some pine-scented spray throughout your home before guests arrive for dinner, they'll be coming over to a cozy place where they can relax and feel at home--not a place filled with fumes from an artificial fragrance.

The key point here is that you need to determine what works best for you. Each individual will have different triggers and different ways of alleviating stress and anxiety. You may not be able to implement every strategy listed in this article, but if you can find even one strategy that’s effective for you, it’s time well spent!

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