What Your Home Says About Your State of Mind

by Catherine Pratt

I came home one Sunday night completely exhausted and frazzled.

I threw my stuff down by the door and realized there was already a lot of other items gathering in a pile.  I looked around.  Newspapers, the daily flyers, articles I was supposed to read for work.  And it wasn’t just by the door.  It was everywhere.  It was one more thing to add to my already overwhelming list of things to do.  It made me even more tired just looking at it.  I started to wonder why my place always seemed to be a mess when I’m at my most tired.

If was soon after this Sunday that I began to notice that whenever I was out of control mentally, so was my home.  If I was feeling calm and organized, my place would reflect the same. 

I decided I needed to see if one could affect the other or if one just reflected the other.

So the question was, if I cleaned up my place, would that also clean up my mental thoughts? 
I set to work making my place just gleam.  Recycling recycled, bills paid, clutter tossed.  I even put my clothes away which is no rare feat.  Now, after all that, how did I feel?  I found that I felt that I had accomplished something.  I also felt more organized.   Bad part was that it didn’t seem to last long and my place quickly return to its chaotic state.  Very frustrating.

Next question was if I took the time to unwind and deal with some of the chaos in my head, what would happen to my place?  
This one was interesting as it was almost harder to do this than to clean my place.  I had to really think about what was bothering me deep down.  Questions like:

  • Where was I headed? 
  • What was happening in my life? 
  • What did I like, what did I dislike? 
  • What did I want to accomplish? 

I also needed to take some time to just breathe, be calm, and be collected.  Once I’d dealt with some head issues, I found it was suddenly much easier to clean my place.  And, amazingly enough, as long as I’m in a calm state of mind, it seems to stay fairly close to that way. 

The overall lesson I learnt from this experiment is that it’s good to stop and take a look around at various intervals.  It lets me know how I’m really doing and whether I need to deal with some issues or whether I just need to take a break.  Being aware of your surroundings can reveal your inner state of mind to yourself when you may have been just too caught up in the daily battle of life to even realize that you may have unresolved issues.  Awareness is vital to your mental health.

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