How much is your stress costing you? Have you given this any thought lately? Stress caused by clutter and disorganization costs more than just wasted time, it can also cost a lot of money. So how do you know when it is more beneficial to bring in a professional to help around your house? The three determining factors I like to use are:
- Is my time more valuable than it costs to hire someone (unless, of course, I get joy from the activity).
- I don’t know how to do it.
- I don’t like to do it.
Let’s take the stressful cluttered and disorganized clothes closet as an example. If you have a closet that has not been organized or purged of unused items in a while, then you are wasting time and money in that closet. By hiring a professional to organize the closet, not only will the project get completed more quickly, you may actually make up the cost of paying the organizer with what you save. How you ask? Consider this:
- You will find clothes that don’t get used anymore. These clothes can be sold, consigned, or donated. That’s money in your pocket.
- You may have clothes that you didn’t realize you had and maybe needed now or recently. Finding them again keeps you from repurchasing. Again, money in your pocket.
- You may wear more of a variety of your clothes if you can see and compare them. This wears your clothes more evenly and helps them to last longer. After all, if you aren’t wearing them, why keep them? See #1 above.
- You will save time by going immediately to the place where something is kept. This keeps you from having to go through your entire closet everytime you want a particular item.
- You will be less stressed when you look at your space. You would be amazed at how at-ease you become when you look at a closet with extra space for new things or ample space to move freely. Even though this is a feeling and not necessarily a time/money saving reason it definitely has merit.
When you are deciding about taking care of a stressor in your life, weigh the option of having someone help you. Figure out how much the extra stress from the undone activity is causing you and possibly your family (directly or indirectly through your dissatisfaction) in time, money, or grief. And remember, it may be cheaper in the end than what the price tag reads in the beginning.
Goals. An exciting word yet also a daunting one. Goals are what move us ahead in our lives. Accomplishing a goal can be one of the best feelings in the world. Taking the first few steps on that road toward a goal though can be like walking through mud.
Embarking on the journey towards a goal requires a lot of strength and support, mentally and physically. Take time to think about what your goals are, write them down or enlist the help and support of those around you. Do whatever it takes for you to be successful.
Goals always have to be on top of your mind. To achieve something you need to be thinking of it, always coming up with ways to accomplish your goal. There isn’t always one way to achieve a goal. Think about what works for you and what doesn’t. Pick the path that gives you the greatest chance at success.
In my opinion, daily goals are a great way to get things done without becoming too overwhelmed. They can be small tasks such as grocery shopping, cleaning a bathroom, or working out. Picking one goal a day and making it an absolute priority can make life much more manageable than a page long to-do list.
Daily goals are easier to make realistic, which makes them harder to give up on. The task can be simple enough to achieve but build on a larger goal. Once one goal has been accomplished, set another. You got the birthday shopping done today. Tomorrow you’ll get all the wrapping done.
Not only are daily goals more realistic, but they can also take the pressure off of you. Knowing you have to clean the kitchen tonight when you get home from work is much less stressful than thinking about cleaning the entire house.
It’s like the saying goes “One day at a time.” Stick with that mentality and that larger goal will become more of an achievement before you know it.
Recently Moxie Girl got to work with a client who was completely stressed out by her closet. She knew that there were lots of clothes she hadn’t worn in over 3 years, and they were keeping her from finding the things she really liked. We had a great time working with her and seeing the transformation of not only her closet, but of her stress level when she looked at her clothes. Hope you enjoy the pictures of the process!
Before - Finding the right thing to wear each day was a stressful situation!
Little room to walk and piles made it more challenging
Sorting is the fun part. Once all the clothes were in categories (on the bed in this case), the client could easily see how many shirts, dresses, pants, etc. she had. Lots of donations got pulled from these piles!!
The donation pile began to grow. There were lots of clothes that were in great condition, but hadn't been worn in years.
Summer shoes were moved to the accessible shelves, shirts were hung above pants and skirts (because we wear shirts on top and skirts/pants on bottom). This created easier visuals for our client to get dressed each day.
The piles on the floor were cleared and the shelves became an organized space for accessories.
We then cleared out the SIX bags of clothing, shoes, and accessories the client no longer wanted. All items were in great condition and were donated to a local domestic violence shelter. Our client gets a big tax write-off AND a happy, organized closet.
There are two forms of stress – distress and eustress. Distress is the most common referred type. It refers to harmful stimuli that make you weaker and potentially less confident. Examples may include destructive criticism, abusive bosses and family members, your physical envirnoment aka your home, as well as other things in your life that may be bringing you down. Eustress is a positive form and literally translates to “good stress”. It usually is related to desirable events in a person’s life and examples include positive role models who push us forward, physical training to improve our bodies, and risks that expand our comfort zones. Both forms can be equally taxing on the body and are cumulative in nature, depending on a person’s way of adapting to a change. The body itself cannot physically discern between distress or eustress. However, the idea is to equally remove distress and find eustress. As they always say, “Out with the bad, in with the good.” (excerpts taken from http://www.fourhourworkweek.com/ and http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Eustress).
This blog is going to concentrate on one particular area of your life that may be causing you stress, your home? If your schedule, responsibilites, and daily tasks have gotten to the point where keeping up with your home and the things coming into and out of it are not getting accomplished then your home may be causing some stress. Lets face it, keeping up with our homes can be and usually is a job. Just like any other job a home requires systems and processes for it to run efficiently and effectively. When you are looking for something can you find it or is there a lot of clutter in your home and life? Having an organized system may help. When you want something like your favorite ingredient do you have it? Meal planning will more than likely correct the problem. When its time to leave do you know where that favorite shirt is? A laundry schedule may help you. Are there always crumbs on the kitchen counter and pots and pan in the sink? A routine cleaning schedule may help you move forward.
Don’t underestimate what a healthy and stress-free home can provide. When we have removed areas of our life that don’t move us forward and maybe even hold us back we are creating positive change for our life and others closely related to it. When you open the doors and clear out some space in your life you are allowing it to be filled up with more things that only you allow. Of course those things are going to be nothing but positive, happy, and fulfilling.
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Stress Free Living. It’s a great buzz-term right now, after all, who wouldn’t like to have zero stress in their life? In reality, our lives will never be stress free. It’s human nature. If we don’t have big stressors, we find little ones to become stressed about. Someday, when I am retired and living on a beach, I’m sure I will be stressing over which flavor margarita to have, and I will still be rushing to get to my surfing appointments on time because my nap ran late.
The key to “stress free living” is not really to be free of stress, but rather to distinguish what is causing the stress and eliminate it. All too often, we simply identify the stress and think about how we need to eliminate it. The major culprit? To-Do lists. Don’t get me wrong, To-Do lists are a great way to get everything out of our heads and onto paper. The problem is that most of us only use them to THINK about our stress. By the time everything is written down, it becomes a daunting, overwhelming task just to decide which task to start with.
What works better? Taking ACTION! Instead of a To-Do list when I am super stressed, I start an I-Did list. I pick one of the thoughts floating around my head and DO IT. Whether it is laundry, walking my dogs, or calling my sister who I haven’t talked to in weeks, I DO SOMETHING! Once I complete it, it goes on my I-Did list. Instead of sitting around for an hour planning how I am going to do these little tasks, I simply take an hour and do them. Then I can celebrate my successes and get on with my day.
Lately there is quite a buzz about the term “stress-free living.” Magazines are telling us it is something we should all strive for. Doctors are telling us that we need it for our health. And those perky, happy people we see at the grocery store seem to already have it. If it’s so important, why does no one really know what it is and how to get it?
This month Moxie Girl is going to focus on the idea of stress-free living. Our company mission is “To understand the causes of stress in today’s homes, and to alleviate it to the best of our ability,” so it only seems fitting that we talk about the subject at some point.
If you have comments, ideas, philosophies on what stress-free living means to you, please leave your them here in our comment area or as a post on our Facebook page. We want to know what YOU think of this growing trend, and how does it actually apply to your life?