Clean Room, Clean Mind



A cluttered room leads to a cluttered mind. Don’t be scatter brained with your scattered trash.

Gianna Zarcone, Staff Writer

You’re sitting in your room, your mind clouded with stressful and negative thoughts. Why do you feel like this? As you sit there wondering what could be causing this nagging feeling, you get a glimpse of the pile of dirty clothes in the corner of your room. You have nothing better to do, so you get up and bring the pile to the wash. As you walk back into your room, you see a couple of dirty plates stacked upon each other. You’re already up so why not clear these out of your room? After a few hours, you finish cleaning and feel a sense of accomplishment wash over you. Do you think the mess could be the reason you felt so upset?


“Clean room, Clean mind” is a quote that has improved people’s mental health since people had rooms. I wanted to find out more about a clean room’s effect to clean up the mind.


I asked a variety of people, how do you feel when your room is messy?


“I feel more disorganized, and feel more overwhelmed,” says Guidance Counselor Ms. Biernacki.

When asked about having a dirty room, each one of the interviewees said they felt disorganized and stressed. After doing some research, I found out that having a cluttered space creates a higher level of the stress hormone cortisol which causes the nervous system to always be in a low grade, fight or flight state.

However the question, “Should parents force their children to clean their rooms?” got more of a variety of responses.

“I think they should encourage it, force is a bit of a strong word. Maybe not force, I would strongly encourage,” said 8th grader, Michaela Snider. “There’s a difference between not doing it just because you don’t want to do it or not doing it because you aren’t in the right mental space to do it.” 


Clean room, clean mind can also be a lot bigger than just feeling stressed because it’s cluttered. Wanting to dive a little deeper, I asked Biernacki about early signs of depression, and what she would do if her child had a messy room.

“I would probably work with them to see where we begin and help them kind of sort through some of that. I guess figuring out together what’s the next thing to tackle, reorganizing, folding,” said Biernaki. “Also, having another partner can be helpful through that.”

What are some early signs of depression? “ It’s definitely different for everybody. A sense of fatigue, sometimes a lack of motivation,” said Biernaki. “Knowing what you need to do but trying to find that motivation, sometimes it’s different seasons, that can definitely have an impact as well.”

All of these can contribute to a decline in mental health, and getting organized can definitely help.


Being healthy mentally can take a lot of courage and strength. We all need something to motivate us and keep us going; sometimes having a clean room can be a tiny act that gives us the little push we need to get back on track and do our best at a happy life. If you are struggling to keep your room clean, try doing simple tasks and breaking the process up into chunks to make your room a more comfortable space. It can be as simple as taking one piece of clothing to the wash or taking one plate down to the dishwasher. Things as simple as that can help with managing our rooms.