BBC how to get rid of small ants in your house – Future – Can decluttering your house really make you happier

“tidying can transform your life.” this is the beguiling promise from japanese decluttering evangelist marie how to get rid of small ants in your house kondo. Around 11 million people have bought her book, the life-changing magic of tidying up, and millions more have tuned in to watch her in how to get rid of small ants in your house action on netflix in the hope of learning how to how to get rid of small ants in your house emulate kondo’s brand of minimalistic bliss.

Her “konmari” method of decluttering is straightforward – tidy your home by category instead of by room, pull everything out before sorting it out, take in the full horror of your materialism, and keep only things that are useful or “spark joy”. Nothing is safe from her mission to reduce the amount how to get rid of small ants in your house of stuff in our lives – clothes, kitchen utensils, paperwork and most controversially, books, are sifted through, assessed and discarded.

Kondo is far from the only one advocating this simpler, tidier lifestyle. In the UK, sophie hinchliffe, better known as mrs hinch, has been demonstrating to her instagram followers and TV viewers how to get rid of small ants in your house how having a cleaner, tidier home can lead to a better life, while in california, professional organizer beth penn has written a book and set how to get rid of small ants in your house up her own company to help people sort out their how to get rid of small ants in your house stuff. There are dozens of other books and decluttering services to how to get rid of small ants in your house be found with a quick search of the internet.

But for most of us, piles of clutter may not seem like a big deal. It might mean we struggle to find a clear surface how to get rid of small ants in your house to put a glass down on occasionally or we end how to get rid of small ants in your house up stubbing a toe on a carelessly misplaced pile of how to get rid of small ants in your house sports equipment, but it doesn’t make our life any worse. In fact, most of us quite like our stuff – it helps to turn the buildings we live in into how to get rid of small ants in your house homes and can give us a rush of satisfaction.

“for hoarders, objects can represent comfort and security,” says james gregory, a clinical psychologist and expert on hoarding at the university how to get rid of small ants in your house of bath. In the most extreme cases, hoarding is recognised as a medical disorder that can rob how to get rid of small ants in your house people of their quality of life. One study by researchers at yale university used brain scans how to get rid of small ants in your house to show that for people with the disorder, throwing out objects activates a part of the brain that’s also responsible for processing pain.

Most of us may not feel so strongly about our how to get rid of small ants in your house possessions, but things that are tied to emotionally significant memories can how to get rid of small ants in your house nevertheless represent a piece of your identity that is difficult how to get rid of small ants in your house to discard. When you struggle to part with that jersey you wore how to get rid of small ants in your house on the junior varsity basketball team, for example, you are not really clinging to the shirt itself. Instead, you’re hanging onto the memories represented by that now-tattered item of clothing you probably won’t wear again. Its sentimental value may make giving the jersey away feel how to get rid of small ants in your house like giving up a piece of your own identity, says gregory.

Certainly, it seems living in an untidy space can negatively affect how to get rid of small ants in your house many areas of our lives. Stephanie mcmains and sabine kastner, psychologists at princeton university, found for example that clutter can reduce our ability to how to get rid of small ants in your house focus on a task, which may explain why some people cannot stand to work how to get rid of small ants in your house at a messy desk.

When our surroundings feel full, it can also make us feel more anxious and stressed, with one study by psychologists rena repetti and darby saxby how to get rid of small ants in your house at university of california, los angeles finding mothers living in messy houses had higher how to get rid of small ants in your house levels of the stress hormone cortisol. Clutter can also make it harder to fall asleep and how to get rid of small ants in your house can even make us more likely to reach for junk how to get rid of small ants in your house food, according to one study, which found participants using a “chaotic kitchen” ate twice as many cookies as those in an organised how to get rid of small ants in your house kitchen.

“one of the obvious advantages to a tidy house is how to get rid of small ants in your house that being able to easily locate things will cause you how to get rid of small ants in your house less stress,” says chris stiff, a lecturer in psychology at keele university. There is evidence that tidy environments help us think more how to get rid of small ants in your house clearly. For example, researchers at the university of navarra found volunteers made more how to get rid of small ants in your house mistakes inputting data in a messy environment, than in a neat one.

“the idea of tidying and being neater can give you how to get rid of small ants in your house a feeling that you’re capable of achieving goals, which is one of our key drivers,” adds stiff. “if you can look at a new area of organisation, it’s good for your self-esteem and can make you feel like you can master how to get rid of small ants in your house the next challenge too.”

Stiff believes one advantage of the konmari method is that how to get rid of small ants in your house it includes detailed instructions but still provides a fair amount how to get rid of small ants in your house of latitude for how to interpret it, making you more likely to succeed in achieving your goal. There is even evidence that finishing a task thanks to how to get rid of small ants in your house hints rather than specific instructions, feels more rewarding.

Sophie scott, a cognitive neuroscientist at university college london agrees that tidying how to get rid of small ants in your house up, whether that’s colour-coordinating a bookshelf or overhauling a wardrobe, acts as a reward, which increases the release of the neurotransmitter dopamine, also known as the brain’s “pleasure chemical” in the brain.

“part of what the reward system does is give a how to get rid of small ants in your house pleasurable sensation of getting what you want and if it’s addictive, that’s a shortcut to that outcome,” scott says. The current craze for decluttering and creating a strictly curated how to get rid of small ants in your house “capsule wardrobe” on vlogging channels also often involves buying fashionable essentials and how to get rid of small ants in your house throwing out passé pieces. Scott believes this provides a double boost for our reward how to get rid of small ants in your house system, the first from decluttering and the second from buying things.

She warns, however, that while a good clean out can make us happy, it will only improve our mood if we set ourselves how to get rid of small ants in your house manageable goals. “the way that’s guaranteed to make us unhappy is to set a how to get rid of small ants in your house goal you can’t reach – like decluttering your house in a day,” says scott. “you’re setting yourself up to fail and you will feel how to get rid of small ants in your house worse.”

But should we eschew our worldly possessions altogether in pursuit how to get rid of small ants in your house of happier lives? Many religious figures have sought to live simple lives in how to get rid of small ants in your house the belief that they are not overburdened with possessions and how to get rid of small ants in your house feel free. But we should perhaps be cautious about shedding items we how to get rid of small ants in your house have a deep sentimental connection to.

An artist named michael landy from london took this concept how to get rid of small ants in your house to its extreme. In 2001, he destroyed every one of his 7,227 possessions in public for an artwork called break down, including clothes, love letters, his car and his father’s sheepskin coat. Celebrating a retrospective of his work, he told BBC culture: “it was the happiest two weeks of my life… at moments, admittedly, I felt like I was witnessing my own death, because people I hadn’t seen for years would turn up, and I thought, ‘well, they’d only turn up for my funeral.’ but often I did feel real elation. No one had ever destroyed all their worldly belongings before.” however, he said onlookers were at times appalled, especially when seeing the destruction of personal mementoes.

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