Detox Your House So You Can Declutter Your Mind
Here at the 40yearflip, we take a holistic approach to health and wellness. We believe that in order for you to flip your life and be well and happy and healthy, you need to work on your body, mind, and yes, your environment. That’s why if you want to improve your health and your mindset, you need to start by detoxing your environment, aka your home.
The environment that you create for yourself is a reflection of you. That’s why you’ll notice when you aren’t 100% emotionally, it will show up around you in your environment. It can show up in many ways. Maybe you won’t make your bed for days on end. Maybe you’ll let dishes pile up in the sink. Maybe you’ll let your To Do pile get bigger and bigger until it tumbles. Hey, it happens to the best of us.
As they say, the first step’s a doozy. That’s because starting any chore is the hardest part of any journey, and that’s especially true when it comes to cleaning and decluttering.
But the real problem is that it can become a Catch 22. You know the cycle, I’m sure…
1. You start to feel down and crummy.
2. So you slack on housekeeping and let things pile up and get more and more cluttered.
3. The clutter makes you feel uncomfortable and even a little bad about yourself for letting it get to that point.
4. This makes you feel even more down and even more crummy.
5. You eat a donut in search of a sugar high.
6. You crash off the sugar high and feel even more down and even more crummy.
7. So you circle back up to #1. And they cycle goes on and on.
Whelp, my 40yearflip friends, the only way to flip out of that cycle is to make the conscious decision to flip out of it, and get busy and detox your home, your body, and your mind and do a 40yearflip reboot.
So where do you start? It seems like kind of a chicken or egg type situation, right? Well, yes. But the answer is to just start. Just start with making a few, small improvements to your environment, and for your health, and your mind and spirit will follow your lead. Sometimes, you’ve just got to trust me on this.
Warning! Your mind is going to tell you that you’ll get going on this 40yearflip detox jazz tomorrow, on the weekend, next week, or when you get your next vacation time cleared. But flip that procrastinating thought right on out and just get moving.
So, let’s start with some small, easy-to-implement flips you can make to detox your environment:
1. Air It Out
Even if it’s cold outside where you are, open a window or two and let the fresh air come into your space. Our homes can get stuffy with all that recycled air trapped in our spaces. Open a door or a window, just to get the air circulating. I like to open a front door and a back door to create a nice breeze way, right through the center of my house.
Next, check those filters! Is it time to replace your HVAC filters? Don’t forget other filters as well such as dehumidifiers and your refrigerator. I live in Miami, and my central air is running all year long, and I’m terrible at remembering to change my filters. I have learned that life is a lot easier when you use technology and subscription services to your advantage.
So, now is a good time to set timers, with the proper intervals, on your phone to remind you to change your filters. Go on, do it. I don’t rely on my brain to remember any repeated tasks. I even have alerts for weekly garbage and recycling nights. And if you are anything like me, I suggest you do the same.
Or, if you want to make your life even easier. Use a filter delivery service. I use filtereasy.com, so now I never have to even think about when I need to change my filter. One shows up on my porch, and I change it. It couldn’t be easier. Use the link I just provided for your first filter and delivery free.
2. Treat Yourself to Some Flowers or Greenery
Fresh flowers and plants bring life and good vibes into your home. Just their presence in your home make your home feel more full of life. Flowers, of course, are beautiful to look at and instantly make you happier just by looking at them. If they smell great, too, that’s a totally bonus.
Indoor plants help keep your air fresh. Remember middle school science class? Plants take in all the carbon dioxide you exhale and release fresh oxygen into the air. Plus, they add life and beauty into your home.
Both flowers and indoor plants are a great way to add color, texture and some drama to your indoor spaces, as well. So, go treat yourself!
3. Get Your Aromatherapy On
Did you know the part of your brain that processes smells is located in the same area that processes memories? That’s why smells can trigger memories and emotion. And, breathing in nice aromas naturally puts us in a happier mood. So, light those candles! Not only do they smell great, but they give your house a cozy look and feel.
Or, put some essential oils in your diffuser. When I’m trying to psyche myself up to be productive, I use a blend of sweet orange and rosemary in my diffuser. Breathing in essential oils actually stimulates your olfactory system—your nose and the part of your brain that processes scent. Not only that, but when you diffuse essential oils in your environment, their molecules flow through your nose, your lungs, and get absorbed throughout your body and your brain. They have then have a stimulating or calming effect (based on the essential oil or oils you’ve chosen to diffuse) on you limbic system—affecting your mood, breathing patterns, heart rate, blood pressure, stress levels, breathing patterns, your memories, and even your hormones.
If you haven’t tried diffusing essential oils at home or your place of work yet, I think you should give it a try. Personally, I use Art Naturals; you can get a complete kit here.
4. Declutter Your Home
Get your Marie Kondo on! And by that I mean actually do some decluttering; binge watching strangers do it on TV does not count. Start small so that you don’t get overwhelmed. And don’t move on from one project until you have finished the previous one.
I suggest starting with your junk drawer. Everyone has one. Some of you may have more than one. It’s ok, no one needs to know, just go tackle one of them, like pronto!
After junk drawers, I like to attack piles. Do you have random piles of papers and stuff? I do. I have a pile right now that I’m going to take care of as soon as I’m done with this. It’s the pile of mail that I deemed too important to toss out, but yet, somehow, not important enough to open. Do you have one like that? Then join me in taking care of it. One way I’ve reduced that size of this particular pile, is that I now refuse to bring any mail that I know I don’t need or will never open in to the house. I keep a recycling bin in the garage, and I toss in all junk mail before I ever enter the house.
The next step in your declutter detox is to take care of the dreaded closets. Sorry, sis, but it’s got to be done. Things you don’t need, are just things you don’t need. And the honest truth is, you don’t need much. You certainly don’t need many of the things in your closet. Shoes you bought because they were drop dead gorgeous and on sale, but you can’t take 2 steps in them without crying in pain---you don’t need it. The 15 pairs of jeans that sort of fit but not really---you don’t need it. Lonely, single socks who’ve lost their mates to the dryer monster---you don’t need it.
5. Swap Out Toxic Home Cleaning Products for Non-Toxic Cleaning Products
It’s highly likely that your broom closet and the area under your sink are full of cleaning products that are loaded with harmful chemicals. Yes, they clean your house, but they leave behind a chemical-laden residue, and produce fumes that are harmful to your olfactory system and lungs. No thank you, very much! It’s time to flip out your chemicals for some non-toxic cleaning products.
Toxic Cleaning Products to Look Out For:
Air Freshener Sprays
Use These Cleaning Products Instead:
Products by Seventh Generation: Seventh Generation products are low in toxins and produce less fumes than most other brands. They have a wide array of cleaning products, personal care products, baby products, and even products for your pets.
Products by Dr. Bronner’s: The Dr. Bronner’s brand focuses on completely biodegradable and vegetable-based Castile Soaps that are good for the environment and for your health. I love their soaps with natural fragrances like peppermint and lavender—heavenly!
The Grove Collaborative: The Grove Collaborative is a service that delivers toxin-free home goods to your door. They are a do-no-harm brand that focuses on products and delivery methods that are good for the environment and people. They also do not use products that are tested on animals. If you know anything about me, you know that I’m a huge supporter of subscription services. The less I need to remember to shop for, and the less I need to run to the pharmacy or big box store, the better my life is. So, I’m a huge fan of The Grove Collaborative. Use the link provided for a free 5-piece gift set with purchase.
Baking Soda: Baking soda is the old-fashioned standby for cleaning everything from teeth to ovens. And, guess what, it still works.
White Vinegar: Your basic bottle of $1.00 white vinegar is a great cleaner. You can use it on almost anything from your floors to your coffee maker.
6. Last But Not Least---A Good Deep Clean
Now that you’ve got your nontoxic products, deep cleaning is the next logical step, where you go beyond just cleaning the kitchen, vacuuming floors, and dusting furniture. Deep cleaning is all about the getting the shit done that you almost never do—scrubbing down baseboards and trim, taking down and washing curtains, dusting off blinds, washing windows, deep cleaning your refrigerator and freezer, getting down and dirty in the garage, clearing out the dreaded basement, and cleaning rooms that don’t get much attention, like spare rooms. If you have kids, it’s time to see what’s going on under those beds and in those drawers. I’m warning you though, if you have teenagers, this could be scary. Prepare yourself, mentally.
Some people find the process of deep cleaning to be very therapeutic. Some just need to have it done so that their mind and spirit feel lighter in a clean and organized space. If you are in camp one, have at it and really enjoy your detox. If you are in camp two, there are plenty of local maid services that offer routine housecleaning. All you need to do is a quick google search. Or, if you just need a one-time deep cleaning, check out the apps Handy, Takl, and TaskRabbit, and you can summons a house cleaning expert right to your home. Use my links to get up to $55 off at Handy for housekeeping and $10 off your first task with TaskRabbit. On Takl, use code 81F72 for $10 off.
Ok, so, are you feeling fired up and ready to go? I hope so. I am.
Scroll on down to the comments section and tell me what your least favorite chore is when doing an environmental detox. I’ll go first.
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