Managing Your Environment
I remember my mother getting on to me about cleaning my room when I was a child. I never really wanted to hang out it my room because it was messy. When eventually and usually with my Mom's help, my room would be cleaned (really cleaned and not just fake cleaned) I would love being in there. My bedroom was my space and it definitely served me a lot better when it was functional. It has taken me years to really comprehend the impact my environment has on my wellbeing. My office space was typically the worst. I have ADD type personality and my desk would be piled with unfinished tasks and would in no way be functional as a work space.
I would go to my friends homes (usually older than me) and I would be amazed at how CLEAN their homes were. Life 5 Star hotel level clean. I know how to clean and if I'm being honest I actually enjoy cleaning. I find it very therapeutic. I would get anxiety about doing work when my office was in disarray and didn't want to invite people over if my floors needed vacuumed and I had this very simple realization - just clean the damn house - EVERYDAY. When I clean as I go, wiping down the counters and bleaching the toilets and vacuuming - my home is NEVER a mess and is always welcoming. It makes me feel good - I can feel proud of my living space. Managing my environment is about more than just cleaning though. Sometimes we get that feeling that life has become stagnant and when that happens I have to evaluate what it is that has me feeling stuck. It's not always easy to pinpoint something specific, but something that I can do to shake that feeling (without suffering any permanent repercussions) is to rearrange/manage my environment. I can move furniture, I can redecorate, I can DECLUTTER! Getting rid of things can be incredibly liberating. Something as simple as cleaning out the closet or throwing stuff away can help clear your mind and lighten your mental load.
There is so much in this life that we have absolutely no control over. If it is within our power to manage our environment then it is our duty to do so. I FEEL GOOD when my home is clean. I have something I can feel proud of. I make my bed every single day when I wake up. It is the very first thing I do. I can check one task off of my list before the sun even rises and that brief simple task gives me not only a sense of accomplishment, but starts my day with momentum to continue being productive.
The last car I owned may have been washed 3 times. Total. My boyfriend is a car guy and when I got my new car the first thing he did was wash and wax it. He taught me how important it was to keep it clean - apparently washing and waxing it regularly makes it last longer and prevents it from rusting (who knew?). I always took care of my tires, oil changes, and repairs, but pitied the repair guys who had to drive my messy ride. Not anymore. My car is clean - inside and out - even the trunk (usually). It makes me feel proud to drive it and proud to offer my friends a ride. It also makes me feel a little bit better about myself because now I am the type of person with a clean ride and a tire shine. (Like getting your nails done, but for your car.) There are so many little things we can do with our environment that have incredible impacts on how we feel and how we live our lives.
Our body is part of our environment. Wash it. Shave it (if you're into that). Make it smell good, Get your hair cut and pluck your eyebrows. Give your body sunshine and water and exercise. Give it good food and good sex. You are with your body every single moment of every single day. Get to know it and do nice things for it. If you are feeling depressed - a shower or bath and a fresh shave can make you feel substantially better.
You don't have to dedicate a lot of time all at once to start managing your surroundings. The best way I've found is to do little things here and there. (Please shower/bathe daily) Maybe when getting the house together you start with only wiping down the countertops or vacuuming only 1 room. Baby steps will take you far. Find something small than can be done every day to improve your surroundings and therefore improve your life.