Winter Self-Care Guide: Decluttering  

As we work through different forms of self-care this winter on A Healthier Michigan, it’s time to turn our attention from inward to outward. 

How tidy our spaces are around us – in our car, in our homes and in our workspaces – truly can affect our mental health.


Clutter can make us feel anxious, distracted and stressed. And if we have so much clutter that we lose things, it can make us feel less confident and start to question our own capabilities.  

The way you choose to organize your life often depends on your personality. Start by identifying what would work for you, and then find ways to implement it:  

Once you establish your organizational style and implement a system, it takes less work to maintain it.  

For instance, it takes the same amount of time to throw a piece of mail onto the kitchen counter that it does to throw it into a folder or box. But keeping your counter free of stray pieces of paper can help with your stress level: you won’t be as distracted by all things that you need to do, and can focus on the task at hand, like making dinner. Then when you have time in your week, you can go through each piece of mail and make a plan to address it.  

Hear from a professional organizer on our AHM Podcast with tips on how to get started:  

In addition to improving your mental health, decluttering can help you begin to organize other aspects of your life – enabling you to control your time for exercise and your time for the things that are most important to you. Because decluttering doesn’t always have to mean organizing just your physical space. It can mean organizing your thoughts by writing lists, whether it’s for the grocery store, things to do around the house or tasks to do for work.  

For many individuals who are working from home more often due to the COVID-19 pandemic, keeping control of clutter is especially important to help stay focused and productive.  

Read more about how the practice of decluttering can support your mental health, and how to use the energy of different transition points in the year to propel you forward: 

Each week during January and February 2022, we’ll be featuring a self-care technique to encourage you to try something new and make time for yourself this winter. Follow along on AHealthierMichigan.org. 

Winter Self-Care Guide Archive  

Photo credit: Getty Images

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