Spring Cleaning for Your Mind

By Amy Tilley, PsyD, Clinical Director,
Desert Star Addiction Recovery Center


Spring is here! That means taking advantage of opening your windows in the house, letting the cool, crisp morning air in, and enjoying morning coffee and quiet time on your patio as you watch the sunrise. During the month of May, it is a great time to focus not only on your mental health, but to declutter your environment to improve your state of mind. Spring is a time of renewal and rebirth—and a great time to organize your space and donate (of all those things you don’t need) to your favorite charity.

Did you know that if your environment (home, workspace) is cluttered, that it influences your mental health? Living in cluttered chaos can cause you to feel hectic and unbalanced. This can correlate with increased depression or anxiety symptoms, lower your motivation, and cause difficulty focusing.

Take advantage of the increased daylight we gain in spring and take a week or two to organize and declutter your living space. This will get your environment in order, and you will reap the many mental health benefits of having a clean-living space.


The Benefits of Spring Cleaning

According to the Cleveland Clinic, there are several benefits to spring cleaning each year:

You feel accomplished: when you finish a task, there is a sense of pride and “Hey, I did that!” Our brains like it when we complete what we started, and it can reduce your stress level.

You gain a sense of control and feel more peaceful having accomplished a task.

Less clutter increases your focus. This is particularly helpful for people living with Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder. The less clutter, the less distractions, the better work productivity.

Your environment is safer when there is less clutter. Taking toys, random objects off the floor reduces the risk of falls.

Cleaning gets you moving! It can be a great physical activity if you are a vigorous cleaner!


Make a Decluttering Plan

Spring cleaning can be overwhelming if you don’t know where to start. Decluttering your entire home can be a daunting task, but making a schedule can help reduce your stress level.

Write down your plan. Take two weeks to complete your spring-cleaning schedule.

Decide on an organization that you want to donate your belongings to. Create piles: Keep, Donate, Trash. This will help you figure out what you want to do with all those things you may not need or want anymore.

Do one room at a time. Breaking it down into smaller tasks can make things more manageable.

Start small—pick your smallest bathroom and begin there.

Each day you complete one room is a small (or big) victory!


As you go through your home, room by room, notice how you feel once each space is clean. Is your mood improved? Do you feel refreshed? Do you have more motivation? Are there less cobwebs in your brain? Don’t forget to continue to get support: continue with your treatment program, go to therapy or a 12 Step meeting. Let the month of May be a rejuvenation of your mind and your home.


Amy has 20 years experience in the mental health and addiction recovery field. Learn more at https://desertstararc.com   /   Contact: 520-638-6000