It’s no secret that we as consumers own a lot of things. I know this is a really broad statement, but that’s because we have been conditioned by companies and society to consume items. From clothes, cars, electronics, and even the posters we hang up, what we own represents what we like and who we are. Therefore, what we own is a direct link to our personalities.
Understanding the general sense of “why” people buy and keep things, how does ownership and organization of these items affect our day-to-day activities or vice versa? There are many studies that explore how mass consumption and cluttered spaces affect our moods and productivity. I honestly never paid it much mind, because I tend to be the type of person that could work through a hurricane if I really have to get something done. But it wasn’t until the past week that I saw exactly how my cluttered mind, led to me having a cluttered space which affected my productivity.
Recently, I had to work remotely at home so that I could attend to a family member battling some severe health issues. I work remotely from time to time, but not for weeks on end. And to be fair, because of my busy schedule I have been neglectful of my home desk area and overall room. Throughout the week, I noticed that I wasn’t as focused, with small items on my desk such as lip glosses, endless sticky notes, markers, pop culture mugs, and other items really distracting me. Items that normally give me pleasure and speak to who I am as a person, were causing me stress. And of course, I did not want to take the time to tidy up because work had to be done between tending to my ill family member.
My stress impacted my desire to keep my workspace clean, which then made me less productive, increasingly agitated, and perpetuated a seemingly endless cycle. Needless to say, I cannot wait to get back to my work desk.