Outer Order, Inner Calm with Amy Tangerine

Outer Order, Inner Calm with Amy Tangerine

We’ve all heard the saying. But why is it so? 

Research has proven the connection between high cortisol (stress hormone) levels and the visual clutter in one’s environment. A disorganized space actually impacts our physiology. Removing physical clutter removes mental clutter and gives our brain an opportunity to relax. And here’s a bonus for us crafty types—when you are more relaxed, you are more creative.

Amy Tangerine, author of Craft A Life You Love, is a champion of outer order for inner calm. To stay clutter free, she subscribes to the practice of holding every space to be sacred. Even the junk drawer that is only seen by herself.

Here are Amy’s top strategies to create outer order for a boost of joy and creativity.

Reduce distractions 

In Craft A Life You Love, Amy urges her readers to pay close attention to the physical environment where they create and identify sources of distraction—anything that pulls attention away from the work at hand. It might be a messy corner, a ticking clock, or even another project-in-progress. Studies have shown that even small distractions derail productivity.  

Amy suggests choosing one project to work on at a time and keeping supplies for all the others contained and out of your line of vision. This will help you "get in the zone" and do your best work. She also recommends keeping your phone and computer out of reach during a project. Not because they take up much physical space, but because of their great potential to distract.

Organize for function and beauty  

There's a lot of talk these days about minimalism (which is great!), but you'd be hard pressed to find a true crafter without a healthy stash of supplies. Amy is no exception. She has a lot of stuff. 

After years of experimenting with different organization methods, she finally found a system that works. 

Amy uses the DreamBox to keep all of her supplies highly accessible and visible. She has organized it in a way that is not only functional, but also aesthetically beautiful. Rather than being a distraction, her supplies now serve as a source of inspiration and creative energy. True to the Amy Tangerine brand, she recommends organizing in rainbow order. 

Dismiss the unnecessary 

Amy explains that another important step to claiming outer order is "eliminating the things that do not matter." Start with the meaningless items that hold claim to your physical real estate, but don't stop there. Think about the people and situations that are sucking up valuable brain space and energy.  

One of the simplest ways to de-clutter our lives is to reduce the sheer amount of unnecessary baggage. 

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