Welcome Back! I’m glad you are here. Today we are continuing our series on Recovery. In this episode, we will focus on cleaning our self and surroundings.
There is a common saying which states that, ‘Cleanliness is next to Godliness’. This is not me trying to be overly religious because this is not a bible verse, you can find out. This expression is simply trying to say that if we want to be the best part of ourselves, keeping ourselves clean is just next to that.
Why is it so important to keep ourselves and our environment clean?
1. Improves Mental Health
Research shows that, keeping a clean self and environment does not only keep the body healthy but the mind as well.
Remember that, substance use disorder is a mental health disorder, which takes time and a lot of work to recover from. Keeping a clean environment helps to relieve stress, discomfort, makes the air fresh and clean, reduces anxiety and thus improving general mental wellbeing.
I experienced this first hand when somewhere this year my house got flooded and everything was messed up with mud and dirt. It took about a month to clean everything out of the house, throw out the spoiled and damaged property and rebuild the broken parts. During that time, I was frustrated, anxious and depressed. I only started feeling better when everything was finally cleaned and the house began to look normal again.
2. Improves Physical Health
When the environment and self is clean, there is a better chance of avoiding diseases and infections borne from germs, bacteria and viruses. This ensures a healthy physical body which will enable you have the energy that you need to support the mental exercises and activities that are required for attaining your recovery goals.
A healthy physical body means less frequent visits to the hospital which will eventually save you money and time to engage in activity that will be beneficial and profitable for you.
3. Boosts Confidence
A clean body and environment make you confident around others and makes it easier for you to make new friends as you reintegrate into the community. A clean body and environment also improve people’s opinions about you and goes a long way to determine whether you will get that job, apartment, business opportunity and any other new venture you may be trying to get into.
4. Build and Maintain a Positive Character
Living healthy is a positive character trait which you can cultivate and develop from here onwards. When you clean yourself and your environment, you inspire other people to do same and as a result you become a good example for other people to emulate. When that happens, you will be motivated to maintain that character trait that you are admired for; you would not want to ‘lower or drop the standard’. That is what will help you maintain the positive character you have initiated.
What areas should you particularly focus on cleaning?
Wash, Wash, Wash
Wash everything! Wash your clothes, underwear, sleeping sheets, towels. Towels should be washed after at most, every 3 days; you cannot imagine the number and types of germs hiding in there. Other clothes and sleeping sheets can be gathered and washed weekly.
Wash your body, mouth and hair. Change your underwear daily and shave your armpits regularly.
Wash your cups and bowls and kitchen equipment right after using them to avoid breeding bacteria in there.
Wash and scrub the bathrooms and showers, germs hide there too, especially the toilet, wash it every day.
Sweep, Dust, Mop, Weed
Sweep the room and surrounding areas. Dust surfaces to avoid dirt from getting on yourself and to avoid inhaling dust which could cause respiratory irritations and flaring up allergies in the nose and eyes.
Mop the floors at least once a week with disinfectants to prevent germs from hiding there and also to leave it looking clean and fresh.
Weed any bushes that may be growing around to prevent mosquitoes and other dangerous insects and/or reptiles like snakes from infesting your environment and putting your life at risk of getting stung or bitten, which could become a matter of life and death.
Straighten, Press, Tuck In
Lay your bed, tuck the sides into the bed frame if you have that kind of bed, press your clothes, arrange your room properly. Keep yourself and house organized, it relieves a whole lot of stress and makes it easier to find things and get other things done.
Always wear your clothes ironed, it gives you an enlightened look.
Cut, Trim, Comb
Cut your hair if you are not wearing an afro or braids or dreadlocks. If you do have locks or are keeping any style of hairdo, keep it clean. Trim your beard if applicable, and your nails too.
Try these and experience good mental and physical health, see your confidence jump to new heights and experience a stress-free new life. Let me know what you think in the comments.