Are you kind of a hoarder? Is your home cluttered and messy?

Do you lose motivation by just walking in your front door? Does your stuff exceed your space?

Are you hesitant to have guests over?

I can answer “yes” to these questions most days.

My biggest problem is that my space is too small for the number of people and their accompanying stuff in our modest home. Stated in the reverse, our stuff is too great for the space in which we choose to reside.

Did you know that clutter is actually a contributing factor to a lack of productivity, depression, anxiety, stress, and more? In “Why Mess Causes Stress,” Psychology Today warns, “Clutter inhibits creativity and productivity by invading the open spaces that allow most people to think, brainstorm, and problem solve.” (Bourg Carter) To take this a step further, I find that clutter in my home leads to clutter in my brain itself, making me feel like I am living with cement shoes on.

7 ways a backyard gardening benefits kids, mom, and the whole family

As a very busy mom, homeschooling lots of children in a small space, tackling the clutter feels insurmountable most of the time. Yet, it is imperative that I remain productive and avoid the other negative effects of clutter upon both my psyche and that of my children. During the process of decluttering our home and creating organization and workable systems I discovered a magical solution that has made all the difference.

My secret is creating beautiful spaces.

While I may not be able to fully organize the whole house or even an entire room, I can turn a small area into a work of art or an oasis of beauty, even in my little house.

This seemingly small undertaking has been both life-giving and inspiring to all of us. It has increased our productivity while decreasing our stress levels. And most amazing of all, having small areas of tranquility has motivated everyone and given us the energy to get rid of more unnecessary stuff.

In my article “Clutter Stresses and Depresses Me, Yet I Have No Time to Organize,” Step 4 was Eliminate the Superfluous. Waking up each day and being able to eat breakfast while feasting our eyes on the decorated window with a bird feeder attached to the glass or the single shelf with a pretty picture and just three plants, or our new art wall, have inspired us to keep claiming more ground and get more out the door.

I dropped 14 bags of things we didn’t really need at the thrift store this week alone! And my “sell on Craigslist” pile is very tall!

One reason this strategy is so effective is that it enables even the perfectionist to celebrate success. While some of the house might still be a disaster, that one area is amazing. I can gaze at the beauty and inhale the feeling of accomplishment. I love taking a picture, sometimes just for myself and occasionally to post on social media.

8 examples you can tackle this week:

Begin easing your stress and celebrating success in decluttering your home!

1. A tiny Zen garden.
2. Buy a plant and clear a shelf for it.
3. Place a bird feeder outside a window you frequent and clean the window and the window sill so it is clutter free and enjoyable to look out.
4. Get a tiny sandbox and decorate it simply. There is something phenomenally realizing about a sandbox.
5. Dedicate one wall to art. I put a single frame up for each family member and we rotate new art creations.
6. Clear your porch and put a comfy chair to sit and read or meditate.
7. Hang a hammock or swinging chair. (Inside or outside) Swinging is amazingly therapeutic.
8. Organize and beautify one shelf or one cupboard.

Each home is unique and there are many more ideas. No matter where you are on the clutter spectrum, choose one tiny area and make it gorgeous. Then soak in the beauty of it until you are ready to create a second one. Slowly you will find your mind healing, your productivity increasing, and your home becoming increasingly beautiful.

If I have inspired you to create even one beautiful space in your home, this 3 am article was worth the reduced sleep! Your like is always appreciated and tips make my day too. ❣️


Bourg Carter, S., Psy.D. Why mess causes stress. (2012). Psychology Today.


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