Stress and Clutter and Cleaning…Oh My!

Ah, stress. We all deal with it in different ways. It’s no fun, but like death and taxes, it is an inevitable part of life.

I feel like lately my entire life is one big ball of stress. I’m dealing with issues in my personal life, preparing to move out of my first apartment and into a new place, running two websites, working odd hours at my full time job and many other smaller issues. As I write this blog, there are dishes in the sink, laundry that needs to be folded and luggage that needs to be unpacked from my recent vacation. I also have deadlines up the wazoo, a work trip to plan, groceries to buy and floors to mop.

The only saving grace is the glass of wine next to me and The Golden Girls playing in the background.

I’m not going to lie, today was a tough day at the office and coming home to a totally-my-own-fault messy apartment didn’t help my grumpy mood. I actually burst into tears when I saw the mess (even though I am the one who created it) because I was so overwhelmed with it all.

However, I only let myself cry for a couple of minutes. I calmed myself down, found something for dinner, poured myself some wine and put on one of my DVRed shows from when I was away. As I ate, drank and lost myself in an episode of Mom, I began to feel a bit better. (It also turns out being super hungry is a stress trigger, who knew?) I also realized that being this stressed all the time isn’t good for my health….or for the people around me, for I will end up driving them crazy. The thing is, I am at a loss of how to handle things. Sometimes it all feels like too much and there is no way to handle it all.

That is when I realized….I can’t and I don’t have to handle it all….at least all at once.  It seems simple, but the truth is, if I take things one step at a time, things will get easier and the stress will diminish. The thing is to start small.

Right now, seeing my apartment all cluttered is making me feel overwhelmed and to NOT want to be there. I’m too embarrassed to take a picture of it, but at this moment it looks like a cyclone hit it. The best way for me to handle the mess is to take one section at a time. Start with the unpacking and put things in their proper place. Follow this with taking my summer clothes out of the drawers and pack them into the boxes I used previously for winter clothes. I can also use this time to see what is worth keeping and what I should toss…as well as pack for my move.

While this may seem small, it is still progress and will prevent me from being overwhelmed later on in the year when it is time to move.

My thought process is doing something small like this every day to at least alleviate the clutter stress in my life.

As for the rest, well, that is a story for another post.



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