Throughout our lives, our homes become filled with belongings and treasured items full of memories. We accumulate “stuff” everywhere, and sometimes find it very difficult to part with any of it. You probably have storage spaces or rooms in your home filled with things like holiday decorations, your children’s belongings, maybe some out of date clothing and accessories, etc. It might seem impossible to let go of any of these items, but there are actually some very valid reasons for paring down some of that clutter- and sooner rather than later.
De-Cluttering for Seniors 101
If you’re still in your current home and are finding that you’re becoming more and more overwhelmed by your belongings, starting the de-cluttering process now is definitely a good idea. Some of the reasons you should consider getting your home cleared out and organized include:
- Planning on downsizing your home in the near future. De-cluttering is an important step when you’re considering downsizing your home. After the kids have moved out and you find that your current home just has too much space or has become difficult to maintain, downsizing is a great option for seniors. However, downsizing also means you’ll likely have less storage space, which means making smart decisions about keeping the items most important to you.
- Reduce your stress levels. Studies have shown that clutter can have a negative effect on our mental health; you’re spending too much time focusing on excessive stimuli that aren’t important to your life, which can raise your stress levels.
- Have more space for important events or activities. Perhaps you’d like to have the family over for holidays, or allow your grandchildren to spend the weekend at your home. If there’s clutter throughout your dining room, or your extra bedroom better resembles a storage locker, you’ll have a hard time finding the space to host these types of activities.
- Decrease the risk for an injury. Extra clutter can actually be dangerous! Boxes or items lining your hallways or staircases can easily cause a fall which often leads to a debilitating injury in a senior.
- Improve your health. The belongings you don’t use on a daily basis are most likely gathering dust in a closet or attic, and this can lead to a decline in health. Allergens from dust, dust mites, pollen and mold can collect in infrequently used items quite easily, and getting rid of them will help improve not only the air quality in your home, but your overall health, too!
- Leave loved ones less responsibility. You might be hanging onto items because you believe family members willwant them after you’re gone. This is entirely true, but instead of leaving a house full of items for them to inherit and subsequently have to go through on their own, wouldn’t it be better to start designating items to them now, when you can also share the memories together?
Home Organization Tips for Seniors
De-cluttering is not an easy process, but it’s certainly an important task to tackle. Remember to start small and find a method that works for you. Don’t think you’ll be able to get the entire home organized in just a few hours, or even a few days! Get loved ones to help and get to work on the biggest problem areas in the home first, like the attic or basement.
For more information about American Senior Communities, please visit www.ASCSeniorCare.com.