Homes Plus

May, 2015

Homes Plus

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By Sara Rae Lancaster HOMES PLUS CORRESPONDENT "Tidy house, tidy mind." You've likely heard the adage, but you might want to start following its advice. Research shows the state- ment could be more than just a clever expression embraced by the exceptionally tidy. A 2011 survey conducted by independent research firm Rus- sell Research on behalf of Rubber- maid, the home organization solu- tions manufacturer, found 91 per- cent of survey respondents were "overwhelmed" by the clutter in their homes. Of those respon- dents, nearly half said they would- n't invite friends over because of the clutter, and a third said they didn't know how to reduce the clutter. Other findings included 57 per- cent reporting they felt "stressed" and 42 percent reporting they felt "more anxious" when their home was cluttered or unorganized. Wellness coach and personal organizer Tina Hansen, owner of THinc Wellness, understands the mental anguish disorganization can cause. She works with clients every day who express feeling over- whelmed and consumed by their stuff. "A lot my clients don't realize how much their physical environ- ment affects them emotionally and physically," Hansen said. "When I first meet clients, they often feel ashamed about themselves and their space. They feel over- whelmed, like they don't have enough time, or that the project is too big. They don't know where to start." The first step toward better organization is often the hardest, so with spring cleaning season in full swing, Hansen offered the fol- lowing tips to help keep the home — and the mind — in order: ■ Don't save all the cleaning (and organizing) for spring. "It may be too late for this year, but I recommend cleaning out clos- ets and basements in the winter," Hansen suggested. "Then, come spring, you can finish those tasks and take the items to a donation center, and tackle the garage when the weather is nicer outside." ■ Make lists. Staring into a cluttered space without a plan is one of the fastest ways to stop any organization proj- ect before it starts. That's why Hansen suggests breaking the task down into smaller, more manage- able steps by writing out two lists: a long-term list and a short-term list. "The short-term list should con- tain a few things you can tackle right away," Hansen said. For example, if an item on the long- term list is "organize the home office," the corresponding item on 241686019 C O N T E N T S Seeing a way through the clutter A cilantro substitute popular in South America, papalo has some unique nicknames ■ Whole-house electrical surge suppressors aren't created equal ■ Factors to consider when selecting flooring for your family's home Metro Creative Keeping everything in its place is more than just for appearances' sake. Clutter can affect mental health. Spring cleaning can improve your health See CLUTTER/Page 3 HOMES HOMES WAUKESHA + Your Guide to Homes, Home Improvement, Lawn & Garden and MORE! A publication of the Waukesha Freeman and Oconomowoc Enterprise • May 2015

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