A Guide to Keeping Your Space Clean When You're Depressed - Apartment Therapy

A Guide to Keeping Your Space Clean When You're Depressed - Apartment Therapy
From The Kitchn - September 29, 2017

If you live with clinical depression, you know that sometimes even just getting out of bed can be a struggle, let alone tackling household chores. Every little thing feels like the world's biggest hurdle, and sometimes you just feel nothing at all. And the whole "I will do it later" thing would not be such a problem if watching a mess pile up around your home did not make you feel even worse. The more tasks that make their way onto your to-do list, the harder it is to get anything done, and it becomes one big messy, vicious cycle.

There are little ways to tackle your messy apartment, even when you are feeling down. Everyone handles their depression differently, so these tips are not about getting yourself out of a down-swing, but rather to help you prevent messes from building up so your home can be the safe space you need without making you feel even more overwhelmed than you already are.

Start Small

Break up big tasks into smaller, more doable actions to get things donejust think about the difference between cleaning your entire bedroom and doing just one load of laundry. Do not set lofty cleaning goals for yourselfthat will just stress you out more. Think of one thing you can do today, even if it does not feel like it will make a difference, and try your best to get it done. You might feel motivated to get more done afterward, or you might noteither way, it's okay. Try to do something small every day, and you will notice that eventually, your apartment will feel less and less messy.

Do Dishes After You Use Them

Personally, the thing that overwhelms me most when my anxiety is at its worst is the inevitable dish pile-up in the sink. Conquering a mountain of plates and pans and forks feels impossible, and even just a glance at my sink makes me more upset. Much like breaking up bigger tasks into smaller actions, try to keep your sink under control by doing dishes after you use them whenever you can and not leaving anything in the sink overnight. If you can prevent the pile-up in the first place, you do not have to deal with conquering a dirty dish disaster later on.

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