(Note: Last week I did a piece on how clutter in our homes is making us fat. My newspaper column today revealed the startling truth.)
Several months ago I caught the tail-end of a segment on Oprah as she interviewed some organizational guru. He had just written a book about how all that clutter hanging around your house may be responsible for weight gain.
And here I thought it was about wonderful tasty things like Reese’s Peanut Butter cups and those “girtle busters” I buy at the Bagel shop. Not so, says this guy.
Yesterday, I drifted by a local book store to browse – I had to, because my house had become so disgusting and disorderly, I needed to escape. The Christmas decorations are still sitting on my living room sofa like guests that have stayed too long.
No chance of eating at the dining room table because it’s covered with tax information and magazines dating to the last millennium. I can’t use the oven because its the only place I have to store the new cookware I got for Christmas.
Low and behold, I spied his book. I sat down with a caramel latte (which packed about 500 calories) and did a quick speed read. What the heck, I bought a brownie to go with the latte, now that I know sugar isn’t responsible for my weight issues.
He wrote that our clutter and inability to let go of things which no longer serve us are making us feel overwhelmed and depressed. Ergo, depression and desperation send us to the refrigerator for some kind of diversion. And who can be depressed with a chocolate chip cookie in on hand and a Dr. Pepper in the other?
Being overweight is easier than working out, and definitely easier than getting up and switching off the television to taking care of business around the house.
There are several key factors which link our overfilled homes with our expanding waistlines, said the author.
“Clutter is rarely about the stuff, it’s a whole lot deeper than that,” wrote the author. “You need to look beyond the clutter for answers to address the underlying issues whether they be fear of losing memories (personally, my fear is of losing memory), worry about the future, low self-esteem, or the inability to move past grief.”
If you buy his premise, I guess you could deduce that the ailing economy will cause even more weight gain. We can’t do much about that, but we can control our clutter.
It was time for some research. I left the store and drove home. I picked up a potted Christmas tree in my garden and tried to stuff it in a closet. It wouldn’t go, so I walked out back and stuffed it in my trash can. Oh, that felt good. I never liked that fake tree anyway.
Ditto on a dog-eared towel that had been hanging around the back porch since Thanksgiving. It felt so good I moved inside and put away all the Christmas decorations and filed the tax information. By now it was dinner time and I wasn’t even hungry.
I approached my overstuffed “walk in” closet which I haven’t been able to walk in for a decade. I tossed all the “thin clothes” along with the “fat clothes.” That didn’t leave much to wear and I’m not buying another item until I drop the 10 pounds I gained over Christmas.
Back in the kitchen, I grabbed a half eaten bag of Doritos and carried them to the trash. I dumped coffee grounds on top as added insurance I wouldn’t retrieve them later.
Job done, it was time to watch a little television. After about thirty minutes of watching the cooking channel, I relapsed, and went to get the chips, coffee grounds and all.
The real culprit is the TV. I’m going to write a book titled “Is my television making me look fat?” because I’m pretty sure that’s my real problem.