5 Tips to Cut Holiday Clutter that Can Also Cut Social Anxiety

When you’re house is a cluttered mess, your brain can be an equally cluttered mess, a state that is perfect for worsening social anxiety, shy bladder and other mental health issues. And the clutter situation during the holidays can easily escalate, making you want to run and hide if the closet – if it weren’t already overflowing with all that clutter of its own.

Check out four tips for cutting holiday clutter can also work to cut your social phobias and anxiety:

Learn re-gifting is OK. Upcycling is all the rage, and that counts for holiday gifts. If much of your clutter is created by knick-knacks or other random items that still look shiny and new, consider giving the clutter away as gifts. Spruce them up with a quick clean and a jazzy box, wrap them up and away they go! This works especially well for gifts that have become clutter somewhere deep in your closet that may still be in their original boxes.

Cut down on wrapping paper build-up.  You don’t have to buy a whole roll of special holiday wrapping paper to wrap that regifted knick-knack – or any gift for that matter. Go back the rage of upcycling and find things around the house that may work just fine as wrapping paper. Newspaper, swatches of fabric, even panels of fabric from clothing you no longer wear can make a festive wrapping for a gift.

Review your holiday décor with a stern eye. As sweet or cute that moth-eaten reindeer used to be, it’s time to face the fact that he’s no longer cute or sweet. It may be time for him to go. Only keep decorations that you actually use year after year, not ones you used to use but never intend to use again or ones you haven’t used yet but might one day. Out it goes! Consider donating those that are in good shape to the local thrift shop or community organizations that could use it themselves or give it away.

Don’t let nostalgia rule the roost. This holds true when you’re going through your holiday décor, but it also holds true for any item, scrap of clothing or other thing that you’ll never again use in a zillion years. If something is just too precious to your heart to get rid of, try keeping a small piece of it, like a button or material swatch, to keep in a scrap book.

Find out where clutter likes to accumulate – and find a solution. Cluttered shoes or boots by the door can be fixed with a decorative basket. Cluttered newspapers on the table can be stored in a colorful bin. Keep an eye for major clutter points then make it a point to do something about it.

What if guests are due in about three seconds and you still think your house is a cluttered mess?

Professional organizer Standolyn Robertson says not to fret. (Yes, professional organizer is really her title!) As long as you gave clutter organization a shot, your efforts – or the results – don’t have to be perfect. 

“When you’re on your deathbed, you’re not going to wish that you had found the perfect organizing container,” Robertson says. “The important thing is being able to spend more time with family and friends.”