Make Space for Happiness With Decluttering Expert Tracy McCubbin


Verywell / Julie Bang

Every Monday on The Verywell Mind Podcast, Editor-in-Chief Amy Morin, LCSW, interviews authors, experts, entrepreneurs, athletes, musicians, and other inspirational people about the strategies that help them think, feel, and do their best in life.

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Meet Tracy McCubbin

Tracy McCubbin has always loved to create clutter-free spaces, so she turned her organizational skills into a full-time business called dClutterfly, where she helps people organize their homes. 

She’s also the author of two books. Her first book, "Making Space, Clutter-Free" teaches readers how to get rid of the clutter once and for all. Her newest book, "Make Space for Happiness," describes the link between clutter and emotional wellness.

Why Tracy McCubbin Is Mentally Strong

Tracy says she was raised by a “hoarder.” This experience helped her realize how getting rid of things can be so emotional for many people. It inspired her to start teaching people about how getting rid of clutter can improve their mental health as well as how the inability to clear clutter may signal a deeper emotional issue.

What You’ll Hear on the Show

  • How clutter creates more stress
  • The real reason we find it so difficult to part with items that get in our way
  • How clutter can lead to feelings of shame
  • How clutter affects so many areas of our lives, from our relationships to our finances
  • How clutter affects your time
  • Why your home doesn’t have to be completely organized
  • How decluttering your space will make you happier and less stressed
  • A step-by-step guide to decluttering one step at a time
  • How to know if you have too much stuff in a room
  • What to do with the stuff you aren’t going to keep
  • How keeping too many sentimental things can keep us stuck in the past
  • The best way to get started with decluttering your home

What You’ll Learn About Mental Health and Mental Strength

Your environment plays a huge role in how you feel. And sometimes, we assume being surrounded by a lot of stuff is a good thing—especially if it’s all sentimental things or fun items. But, having too much clutter can take a toll on your well-being.

Discarding items or donating things you don’t need can be quite emotional for a lot of people. You might have trouble getting rid of a shirt that no longer fits because it reminds you of a happier time in your life. Or you might feel bad getting rid of an item because you paid a lot of money for it.

The things you surround yourself with can actually tell you a lot about yourself. And a willingness to clear the clutter can help you break free from things that might be holding you back in life. 

If you’re really struggling to get rid of things and your clutter is impacting your well-being, seek professional help. There’s help available for people who find it tough to get rid of clutter.

Quotes From Tracy

Tracy McCubbin

Time is our most important commodity. If you figure out that every day I hang my keys in the same spot, and I don't have to go looking for them, then I'm saving all this time.

— Tracy McCubbin
  • "I want you to be happy. I want you to be successful. I want your home to support you."
  • "Clutter is a time suck. You're constantly dealing with it. You're constantly moving it around."
  • "I think people don't realize how much having a house full of sort of sentimental stuff keeps us stuck in the past. One of the things I see when people have their closets full of clothes that they can't fit into anymore, that it's reminding them that, ‘Oh, your best days are behind you.’"
  • "Time is our most important commodity. If you figure out that every day I hang my keys in the same spot, and I don't have to go looking for them, then I'm saving all this time."

More About the Podcast

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Reviews and ratings are a great way to encourage other people to listen and help them prioritize their mental health too.

Editor’s Note: Please be mindful that this transcript does not go through our standard editorial process and may contain inaccuracies and grammatical errors. Thank you.

For media or public speaking inquiries, contact Amy here.

Links and Resources

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By Amy Morin, LCSW
Amy Morin, LCSW, is a psychotherapist and international bestselling author. Her books, including "13 Things Mentally Strong People Don't Do," have been translated into more than 40 languages. Her TEDx talk,  "The Secret of Becoming Mentally Strong," is one of the most viewed talks of all time.