How the Clutter in Your Home Can Influence Your Parenting

How the Clutter in Your Home Can Influence Your Parenting

Why finding the area between “immaculate” and “disaster zone” means more than it seems.

If we prefer to live more chaotically than our children, we might have problems if we don’t try to accommodate their need for order.

On the other hand, parents at the “neat freak” end of the spectrum may be reflecting a desire to bring control to an unpredictable world, but constantly monitoring and clearing away clutter can leave us more exhausted, stressed and frustrated than if we didn’t have such demanding standards. And naturally, that’s not good for the family dynamic.


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A relaxed and welcoming home is one that feels lived in and that probably entails mess in moderation. For example, a child who lives in an abnormally neat or disordered home may feel uncomfortable and shy about bringing friends home. As parents, we need to ask ourselves what sort of example we want to set for our kids and whether our kids are able to flourish in the home we create. If you’re hoping your child will grow up to have a creative, flexible mind, then a relaxed environment in which he or she is free to play, test and explore—without fear of a fussy, fastidious parent about to come along and sweep things away—is probably the way to go. 

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