You might dread cleaning your house, but the truth is once you start you actually feel pretty great. A new study reveals why cleaning feels so satisfying and it’s not just because you can finally see the floor again.

The Mr. Clean Cleaning Rush Study conducted in partnership with Ipsos Public Affairs tracked the biometric response to cleaning using wearable devices and found that cleaning stimulates an adrenaline rush. The tracking devices measured the Galvanic Skin Response (GSR) and Heart Rate (HR) of participants and found that while cleaning, changes were observed. This shift was driven by feelings of emotional enthusiasm and excitement, much like watching a sporting event.

photo: Chanikarn Thongsupa via Rawpixel

Participants were also surveyed on their feelings about cleaning and a whopping 100 percent agreed that cleaning provides peace of mind and a sense of control over one’s environment. Among those surveyed, 82 percent also strongly agreed they like to admire their work after a good clean and 81 percent felt a sense of accomplishment when they finished.

“Cleaning anything, whether it’s wiping smudges off your fridge or removing greasy build up from your car’s wheels, can boost your mood and give you a sense of pride for a job well done,” said Dr. Jennifer Hartstein, clinical psychologist. “This positive mental boost can lead to an increased desire to continue cleaning and ultimately results in a truly satisfying experience that leaves the cleaner feeling accomplished.”

The study also found that those enthusiastic feelings that cleaning elicits can often push you to clean more than you had planned for. Two-thirds of the study’s participants strongly agreed that they often cleaned more than they originally set out to and 82 percent of the participants agreed to clean an optional sticky kitchen mess that hadn’t been on their original task list.

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After cleaning, participants reported feeling more determined, inspired and proud, and less jittery, nervous and hostile. So the next time your kids are driving you crazy, you might consider swapping that glass of rosé for a sponge.

—Shahrzad Warkentin

 

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