We all know that keeping a house neat and tidy is important, but how many of us know that it can also have a seriously postive impact on our health and well-being? We're not exaggerating – doctors and scientists have long been espousing the virtues of keeping your home spick and span. Many studies have also revealed that failing to do so can have alarming repercussions.
That's not to say that everyone should strap on a face mask and coat their walls with anti-bacterial spray. There's no need to get obsessive, and a lived-in home is always going to be just a little caotic! However, there are some key things that every homeowner should be doing to ensure their living space is as healthy as can be. Let's take a look at these ten top tips…
The number one reason to take care of your home environment is also the most obvious – do it to take care of your health. You'd be surprised how much havoc dust can wreak on your lungs, especially if you already have a history of respiratory illness.
Damp, mould, and other kinds of fungus are all very good at hiding away in corners, but ignore them at your peril – these gross growths can cause many kinds of diseases, some of which can be fatal. Do a quick internet search for toxic black mould to find out what you're up against, then make sure every last corner of your home is clean and dry. If you find something icky, call in a professional as trying to remove certain moulds by yourself can actually result in the spores being released around your home.
Keeping an open and creative mind has much to do with the way our space is organised. Though many of history's prolific thinkers claimed they worked best in a messy, chaotic environment, the majority of us need a certain degree of clarity and cleanliness in order to focus. Put simply, the more messy and dirty our home is, the less creative and productive we're likely to become.
Get into the habit of keeping your work spaces tidy, and even use it as a ritual to get your head into a focused state of mind. Organise pesky papers into boxes and files, keep shelves uncluttered and orderly, and choose a streamlined design scheme so that your mind stays firmly on the work.
Have you ever felt on edge without being able to explain why? Have you evert thought it might be your mind crying out in response to your less than orderly home environment.
Research has shown that a clean and neat living space can vastly reduce symptoms of stress and anxiety. Give your home and mind a spring clean, and create an atmosphere that satisfies you in terms of texture, shape, and colour. Doing so will mitigate your angst and help to break the vicious cycle of unhelpful feelings.
Stress arises when we feel pressured by everything going on in our lives, both materially and emotionally. If we add to that the stress we feel as a result of a messy home, we'll never find our way back to happiness.
Minimise your stress by having a set cleaning routine. Schedule one day to do the laundry, the next for hoovering, and so on. Managing your time effectively will also help you to manage your stress.
OK, so housework is never going to give us the toned body of a Hollywood superstar, but it does contibute to a less sedentary lifestyle. By making our body move constantly for more than 10 minutes, we start mobilising our joints and giving our muscles a gentle workout. This is vital for everyone, but is especially helpful if you are over 40.
Bacteria is one of the main contaminators of a home, which makes us susceptible to illness. That's why regular cleaning is an essential task. Keep your work surfaces, bathroom, and living areas clean and free from moisture. Wipe down surfaces regularly with soap and hot water, but try not to use too many anti-bacterial products – bacterial resistance is a growing problem!
Our lives would be nothing without the companionship of others, but a messy home can lead to friends making excuses and refusing to come and visit. After all, who wants to spend an hour drinking tea in a hell-hole, even if a good friend is there? Take pride in the appearance of your home and make it an inviting place for select guests to visit. Once word gets around, everyone will be clamouring for an invite to your humble abode.
Being free from worries and stress allows us to kick back, relax, and sleep better. By keeping things in order throughout the day, you lessen the burden at night and on weekends.
Creativity favours comfort. No one wants to work in a messy, unkept area. Some of the world's most successful companies put maintaining a colourful and appealing work space at the top of their list of priorities – just ask Google! Oh wait, you can't, because they're too big and successful to respond to your emails.
Before you get down to work, organise your desk. This is a great long-term habit to form – it's never worth starting a task in the midst of chaos.
If you're not happy, something in your life needs to change. It follows, then, that soeone who is not happy in their home should make an effort to improve their situation. Often, a big cleaning blast followed by the implementation of a structured cleaning rota is enough to lift damp spirits. A clean house is a happy one, so pick up that mop and get scrubbing!
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