Removing the Clutter

JFS of the Lehigh Valley is undergoing a facelift! Thanks to our vice president, Rabbi Allen Juda, our building is being transformed into a more appealing, updated space.  New paint, flooring and lighting have a remarkable impact on mood. Not only will our staff function better because they are working in a more uplifting environment, but clients should find the environment more welcoming and soothing.

According to the Princeton University Neuroscience Institute, clutter negatively affects and restricts the ability to focus and process information. The researchers used Functional Magnetic Resonance Imaging (fMRI) and other physiological measurement tools to map the brain’s responses to organized and disorganized stimuli and to monitor task performance. The conclusions were strong — if you want to focus to the best of your ability and process information as effectively as possible, you need to clear the clutter from your home and work environment. This research shows that you will be less irritable, more productive, distracted less often and able to process information better with an uncluttered and organized home and office.

During my years of counseling clients, the issue of clutter has frequently come up. Many individuals become attached to certain items and they have difficulty parting with objects that have significance to them. I have often theorized that all these things sometimes serve as a way to protect the person from dealing with the really painful issues. When a collection of objects becomes excessive, it can turn into what is now known as hoarding. Frequently the thought of moving from one house to a smaller one becomes impossible when someone has to contemplate leaving their precious belongings behind.

At JFS, not only have we been redecorating, but we have been trying to shed some of the paperwork that has accumulated and may not be useful to keep. This process is also overwhelming at times. As we transfer from paper to technology, the emphasis is on less paper. Letting go of the paper is also a transitional stage.

Simplification and a sense of organization are bridges to healthy living and good mental health. If we can let go of some of the meaningless clutter in our lives, we may be able to focus on our relationships and our goals for self-improvement. 

Please visit the JFS offices and see our transformation. We believe it will have a positive impact on those who deliver and receive our services.

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