“Housekeeping ain't no joke.”
~ Louisa May Alcott
A clean house is more than just preferable- it’s a necessity for good mental and physical health. Experts agree that maintaining a regular cleaning schedule is just as important as eating organic food, doing yoga, and taking vitamins.
According to Wikipedia, cleanliness is both the abstract state of being clean and free from dirt, and the process of achieving and maintaining that state. Cleanliness may be endowed with a moral quality, as indicated by the aphorism "cleanliness is next to godliness."
Our homes are a reflection of our well-being. The way we use, care for and create space activates energy and helps us establish a nourishing environment for healthy, harmonious lives. We need to feel safe at home. A clean, appealing home, no matter how small, can become a special space for you to recharge your batteries, connect with your loved ones, or create something magical like a garden or a lovely meal. Think of your clearing, cleaning, and purifying as part of the sacred act of living.
Cleaning is Not for Whips
Not to freak you out or anything, but there are roughly more than 500,000 bacteria living in your kitchen. Countertops, sinks, drains, sponges, and floors are home to thousands of germs and bacteria. There are more bacteria living in your shower than the garbage can. The good news is that the germs and viruses come off our body when we bathe. The bad news is that they stay in the shower until it’s disinfected because moisture goes with germs like peanut butter and jelly. If that’s not enough to convince you, the U.S. Occupational Safety & Health administration reports that dust buildup can cause poor indoor air quality, which has been tied to causing headaches, difficulty with concentration, and irritation of the eyes, nose, throat, and lungs. Cleaning the house is serious business, and needs to be done on a regular basis to keep germs at bay and health in check.
Cleaning Can Provide a Sense of Well-being
Health factors aside, there are other reasons why cleaning is so vital. One reason is a sense of satisfaction with a job well done. The joy of cleaning comes with a tangible result. The house is clean, uncluttered, germ-free and smelling good. This small achievement can spill over into other areas of our lives, giving us the confidence that we can tackle a project and succeed. You may not be able to control the economy, your boss’s mood, or the stock market, but you do have control over having a clean sink.
Cleaning can also be calming to the mind. Cleaning up our external environment can make us feel like we’re cleaning up our psyche. It feels good to clean the past week of old energy and debris so that we can start the week ahead fresh and new. And who would not benefit from a little meditation in the form of a mindless task to reduce the stress of living a busy life in a fast-paced world? I actually find cleaning to be a relaxing activity- whether I listen to an audio book, music, repeat a mantra, recapitulate the events of the past week, or just shut off my mind completely. No matter how much change occurs in my life, the need to clean is consistent and that is somehow reassuring.
Cleaning is a Mood-Boosting Workout
Not only does cleaning burn calories (roughly 170 calories for a moderate effort and 200 for a vigorous effort per hour) research shows that it also can increase endorphins (feel good hormones in the body). A 2008 study conducted by the British Journal of Sports Medicine found that just 20 minutes of sustained exercise a week- such as cleaning - can improve your mood and lift depression. The more strenuous and frequent the activity, the greater the effect.
How To Get Motivated to Clean:
Most of us really do enjoy having clean homes, but sometimes we just need a little motivation. Here are some suggestions:
Do you see cleaning as part of your well-being? Let us know.