8 Hidden Psychological Problems a Messy Home Can Reveal About Us
Whether you love or hate cleaning is more than just a personality quirk. You can already tell something about a person just by looking at how they do the dishes and where they store their clothes. By paying more attention to the way you organize the space around you, you can learn a whole lot more about your personality. The same works for other people. If you want to try to get a read on someone new that you’ve met, just pay a visit to their home.
We at Bright Side think that it’s always useful to learn something new about ourselves and other people. So here are some of the most popular everyday habits people have and the psychological features that they reveal.
1. All their junk is hidden in drawers, closets, and boxes.
At first sight, their apartment or room might seem perfect: a clean floor, books arranged in a neat fashion, appropriate wallpaper... But once you take a look inside a kitchen drawer or a shelf in the closet, you might see broken scissors or pens, old credit cards, or crumpled clothes.
The way something looks is important to all of us and even more so for people with a dramatic personality type. They love showing the best sides of their personalities and they do a lot of things primarily to impress others. It’s easier for these people to just hide all the old and useless stuff instead of getting rid of it or sorting it out. Often, it’s more important for them to make their place look attractive than it is to actually make it clean.
2. There is an absence of at least some kind of renovation.
Some people spend years living in apartments with a leaky tap, old-school wallpaper, and keep things in boxes in order not to spend extra money on new stuff. They often treat their place as temporary: like they are planning to move to a different town, find a job abroad, get a mortgage, or just wait for their lives to somehow change.
But sometimes, they can live in this “temporary” place for decades. From a psychological standpoint, these people are inclined to live in the future and see it through rose-colored glasses. They treat the present as a temporary discomfort that they just need to tolerate. On the other hand, they often don’t have any solid plan — these people are used to living like this and they are constantly hoping for some outside help that will change their situation.
3. They have a messy workspace.
The workspace is one of the most interesting spots in the apartment in terms of psychology. Some people sort everything into folders and put the folders on shelves. Others mix everything up. All the papers, pens, plates, pencils, laptops: these things take up space and are covered with dust. This can indicate high self-esteem and immaturity.
Even if your desk is messy, you can still actively work there and can easily find anything you need. This is not necessarily a bad thing. Very often, a messy desk is an indicator of a creative and inventive personality.
If you often have to do other things besides typing (for example hand write something, draw, or something else), there is a high probability that your workplace doesn’t look very clean. But on the other hand, it is probable that you often have unusual and creative ideas.
4. They have a full sink, laundry basket, or trash can.
Very few people can say that they love cleaning. But some people hate it so much that it actually becomes scary: they collect all the trash on their balcony during the winter or put all the dirty dishes in the sink until they realize that they have no clean dishes left.
Procrastination is a problem that a lot of people have to deal with. It often occurs in our everyday tasks. And it seems that it is far more logical to do a little work regularly, instead of doing a lot. But in fact, people use excuses like, “I’m lazy,” “I have no time now,” or “I’ll do it tomorrow.” If you’ve noticed that you sometimes procrastinate, try to start with small things. Do your dishes right after you eat, take out the trash every day — this forms the healthy habit of doing everything on time. You will need this habit in more important parts of your life like work or relationships with other people.
5. There’s a feeling that nobody lives there.
Some people’s homes look like they are only used as places for sleep. The place may be clean, have very little furniture, and almost no dishes. Sometimes they don’t even have a stove, a fridge, or other necessary things. These apartments are popular among students who actually spend very little time in them.
However, the older a person gets, the more comfort and order they want in their lives. If the place looks empty but the person spends a lot of time there, it may indicate some psychological issues. One of the is immaturity: the adult person is still waiting for someone to appear and make the place cozy for them. For example, they think they will find a partner who will come and make the apartment comfortable.
6. They leave leftovers in the kitchen.
The kitchen is supposed to be the cleanest place in the house because this is where we eat and cook. Oil and grease stains, leftovers, coffee and tea stains on cups — all these things don’t just make the place look bad, but can also be dangerous for our health. Even the people who don’t really like cleaning try to keep the kitchen clean just to be safe. However, there are people who are okay with a dirty kitchen.
And sometimes the problem is not just laziness. Many studies prove that cleaning the house rarely is one of the signs of depression. People just don’t have the energy to keep their home clean, they don’t feel that it is important, and very likely, they don’t value themselves enough — they don’t think they deserve to live in a clean place. On the other hand, regular cleaning and decluttering have been shown to improve the mood and help fight the symptoms of depression.
7. They have a dirty bathroom.
Shampoo commercials usually show the bathroom as a place where you can forget about all your problems and completely relax. And it’s true: a hot bath or a cold shower have a huge effect on the way we feel. Different smells can wake us up, and salts and essential oils can improve the state of our skin and the function of our internal organs.
Just one look at the bathroom is enough to tell how much the owner cares, not only about their body, but also about their psychological comfort. A clean bathroom is an indicator that it is used regularly. Shower gels, different oils, high-quality toothpaste, face creams, and body lotion — all these things mean that this person cares about themselves. If the only thing in the bathroom is a razor with some dried foam on it or a piece of soap, it doesn’t mean that the person is depressed. It only means that the person is really stressed and doesn’t have much time to care about how they look.
8. They have too much stuff.
Some people have a very hard time saying goodbye to the things they love. You’ve probably seen these apartments: they have tea sets that nobody uses, old furniture that is placed on the balcony, an old bicycle that nobody has ridden for a long time, and other useless stuff.
In the best case scenario, this behavior is an indication of a conservative personality: they don’t want to change the way things are and try to hide from these changes. The worst-case scenario is when a person has a tendency to constantly bring useless stuff home. This is a sign of compulsive behavior and neurosis. These people just can’t stop hoarding.
Bonus: Their space is too clean.
There are people who don’t mind cleaning their bathroom or vacuum cleaning their carpet in their free time. Of course, there is nothing wrong with the desire to live in a clean space, however, if a person pays too much attention to this, it may indicate some problems. Usually, these people are not fans of having guests because they may damage something or move something and disrupt the perfect order.
This behavior may indicate the habit of getting fixated on little things or an inclination toward perfectionism. If an apartment is regularly cleaned because of the fear of germs and dirt, this person has anxiety. Sometimes, cleaning helps deal with this anxiety and helps the person get distracted from unpleasant thoughts, this is why people do it so often.
Numerous studies have proven that cleaning our apartment regularly and other simple everyday actions can solve our concentration problems, and make us more responsible, happy, and confident. Have you ever noticed any link between a person’s character and their everyday habits?
Illustrated by Alena Sofronova for BrightSide.me