Career Connection: Declutter Your Life to Reduce Stress | AIChE

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Career Connection: Declutter Your Life to Reduce Stress

August
2020

Albert Einstein said, “If a cluttered desk is a sign of a cluttered mind, of what, then, is an empty desk a sign?” If you are inclined to agree with Einstein, you may think that a messy work area or home is indicative of creativity or the ability to think big. For many of us, however, disorder is only a big distraction and adds to our daily stress.

If your desk does look like Einstein’s, consider its impact on those around you. “Clutter can create negative moods and annoy others. It’s also important for organizations to promote order and cleanliness as part of a good safety culture,” points out Luis Alosilla Lazo, safety risk coordinator, REPSOL. Andrea Walker, a certified professional organizer and owner of Smartly Organized LLC, explains her perspective: “It’s harder to relax and be creative among clutter. It’s overstimulating when your space is full of too much stuff.”

Walker equates clutter with delayed decisions that continue to collect. “At a fundamental level, you have not decided what to do with all those items strewn about your space. For instance, the mail piles up on the counter because you don’t have a process for dealing with it. Then, it becomes a huge chore you put off each...

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