New Year, New Place – Fresh Start

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Simple Strategies to Keep Your Fresh Start From Going Stale

Despite the January blahs, the New Year is a time when we have a renewed sense of optimism, letting go of the old and making space for the new and improved version of us.  Moving is also a great opportunity to start an exciting, new phase of your life. It’s the perfect time to implement new ways to help keep your fresh start from going stale.  So here are a few strategies to keep the momentum flowing while developing some healthy habits designed to keep your home the sanctuary of rest and relaxation it should be. 

1. Commit to De-Clutter

Studies have shown there’s a very real connection between a person’s overall lack of wellbeing and clutter.   A 2016 study conducted by the University of New Mexico found that “because so many people identify so closely with their home environments, the extent to which it’s cluttered can interfere with the pleasure they experience when being in that environment”.  In fact, clutter has been said to be a reflection of the inner state of the mind and stepping into an environment that is disorganized and over-run with stuff can actually cause a person to feel irritated, exhausted and mentally foggy, which in turn negatively impacts crucial functions like eating, thinking and sleeping.   A separate 2017 study at Cornell University found that people tend to eat more sugary, high fat foods when placed in the chaos of clutter as compared to times when they are in a clean, organized environment.  The study concluded that when a person was subjected to a place where they felt “out of control”, stress levels started to climb causing them to reach for sweets as a source of comfort.   So, in case you thought clutter was just a harmless by product of contemporary life – it may be negatively impacting your overall sense of wellbeing, not to mention your waistline!   A great way to keep clutter to a minimum in your new home is to designate a place for everything.  Having a junk drawer for miscellaneous items is ok and can be a real sanity saver some days but keep it contained to one drawer.   Attempt to apply some order by sorting the junk in some way – drawer dividers or containers are a great way to organize the chaos and commit to clearing out the drawer out every couple of months to prevent a “spill out” to other places.  

2. Start a Schedule

Nothing can put a damper on your weekend like coming home Friday to a sink full of dirty dishes or mountains of laundry spilling down the hall – it doesn’t exactly scream “rest and relaxation” does it?   A great way to avoid this high stress scene is by prioritizing routine chores and designate time to tackle them.   The main thing to remember is be realistic about your time and make a plan that you can easily stick to. It can be a simple as setting aside 20 minutes a night to run the vacuum, put the laundry away or do a quick clear and toss of the fridge to prevent post week pile-up.  

3.  Avoid Procrastination in 24 Hrs or Less

We all have certain things around the house that we dislike doing more than others, things we tend to avoid and put off as long as possible until the smell from the fridge, the piles of clothes in the corner or the dust bunnies down the hall can no longer be ignored.   The trick here is two-fold, give yourself a 24 hr time limit, so you don’t have to do it right away but there’s a limit to how long you can procrastinate and then find a way to take the torture out of these tasks by incorporating an element of enjoyment into them.   A sure fail, simple way to accomplish this is, music, just put on your favourite play list and power through.   Dance party with the dishes may sound corny but it actually works.

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