A Life Less Complicated

6 Ways that Decluttering will Lighten your Mental Load

I cannot emphasise enough how essential decluttering is to managing your mental load. Having moved home a few times over the past few years, I have made it my mission to declutter at every turn and I am so glad I did. Here are 6 reasons that you need to declutter your home:

1. Improved Focus and Productivity

Physical clutter often translates into mental clutter. When your surroundings are disorganised it can be more difficult to think clearly and process information. By decluttering, you will be less distracted and more able to focus on the task in hand.

2. Reduced Stress and Anxiety

Clutter often represents unfinished tasks, unmade decisions and unresolved responsibilities. When you see clutter around you, even if it’s subconscious, it reminds you of tasks you need to do. You might see a letter on the table and remember you need to respond to it. The mountain of toys might get you thinking about your child’s upcoming birthday, what you will get them and what the party plans will be. A study (1) even found that women who described their homes as cluttered had higher levels of stress hormone than those who described their homes as tidy. 

3. Better Sleep 

Did you know having a tidy bedroom can improve your sleep? It can be difficult to relax and switch off if you’re surrounded by stuff, so maximise your chances of a good night’s sleep by decluttering and creating a calm and peaceful environment to sleep in.

4. Easier to Find Things

How many times a day do you lose something? A study conducted by SpareFoot, a storage marketplace (2), revealed that the average person spends about 2.5 days per year looking for misplaced items. If you have a home full of belongings, it can be like finding a needle in a haystack! But if there are fewer items to sift through, it will be much easier to find what you are looking for. Better yet, have dedicated spaces for your belongings so you always know where they are.

5. Reduced Decision Fatigue

The more items you have, the more decisions you have to make. And the more decisions you have to make, the poorer your decision-making skills become over time (3). Just think about getting dressed in the morning – if you have an overflowing wardrobe with hundreds of possible outfit combinations, your decision-making will be much harder than if you had a more minimal wardrobe. Decluttering your home means fewer belongings to manage and decide upon, leading to fewer decisions in your day.

6. Sensory Overload

Constantly being surrounded by stuff contributes to feelings of stress and anxiety. All of the items in your field of vision can lead to visual overload, overwhelming the senses and contributing to feelings of stress. Reducing the clutter in your home will help to create a more calming atmosphere and make it easier for you to relax.


Are you convinced?? I hope these 6 reasons to declutter your home have given you some food for thought. As someone who has repeatedly decluttered over the past few years I promise you won’t regret it. Stay tuned for help and advice on how to actually go about the decluttering process!


(1)  “The Unbearable Heaviness of Clutter: The Role of Clutter in Perceived Home Safety and Wellbeing” – Personality and Social Psychology Bulletin, 2009

(2) “The Cost of Clutter: Study Reveals How Clutter Drains Your Time, Money and Energy” – SpareFoot 2017

(3) “Choice is Demotivating: Can One Desire Too Much of a Good Thing?” – Journal of Personality and Social Psychology, 2000

1 thought on “6 Ways that Decluttering will Lighten your Mental Load”

  1. Pingback: 5 Ways to Remove Clutter from Your Home WITHOUT Leaving the House - A Life Less Complicated

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Hi, I’m Lesley

I'm the blogger behind A Life Less Complicated. I’m passionate about simplifying busy lives and reducing your mental load. Keeping on top of modern life doesn’t have to be so hard - stick around to find out how!

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