How Decluttering Your Life Helps You Move Forward

Did you know that when you are surrounded by more things than you can manage, it sends your brain a visual message that your life is out of control?  That was part of the research I did for my clients in week 3 of my 4 Weeks to Wellness program.  I asked my clients to pick 5 areas of life and work to organize it in a better and more beneficial way for them.  Clutter really and truly gets in the way of living the life you want to live.

What are some areas that you could declutter right now?

  • E-mail
  • Phone contacts
  • Texts
  • Social Media
  • Bedroom
  • Closets
  • Kids area (they need to be involved in the process)
  • Kitchen drawers
  • Garage
  • Office
  • Files

The list can and does, go on and on.  But how do we let go of these things that truly can be getting in the way?  The best way to do this is one small step at a time.  I admit I tend to be really overzealous once I start a project, but starting small is best.  For example, not the whole kitchen.  One drawer.  Then move on to the next, and the next.  One area of the garage (we do this and then it gets ridiculous again, so it’s time to do it again).  This is a life-long process of letting go.  It is also cyclical.  When someone you loves passes on, sometimes you have the monumental task of trying to get rid of things while dealing with your grief.

I want you to wait until your grief has lessened a bit as I know how hard it is.  I have held on to things for over 20 years because they were my grandparents.  I hope it doesn’t take you as long as it took me to realize that my grandparents were really and truly okay with me letting go of some things.  All they wanted for me was love and happiness.  It was a relief to not feel guilt about letting some furniture go.  You too can do this.

How to declutter your life:

  1. Determine why you still have it.  Does it have value and add to your life?  Do you still love it?  Does it even work? This is going to help you with your work.
  2. Sort it out.  Love/keep.  Donate.  Store.  <<< Don’t put everything into storage and do what my parents did.  I went out into my garage one day and found everything from my childhood in boxes.  Nice move dad.  Tinker toys from the 70’s are probably some sort of choking hazard now.
  3. Focus on ONE thing at a time.  One area.  Don’t pull a me.  I tend to need help from my kids when I start this process as I put everything back in its place and realize that THAT room, then needs to be done.  No!  One area at a time.  One.  Ohmm.  I see no other junk in my daughter’s room as I take her shoes back to her overflowing closet.  Where she hides things. and then I want to throw everything out of her closet.
  4. Take the stuff immediately to the donation center or schedule them to pick it up. <<< this is the part that makes me mad.  If I still see it, it bothers me.  Seriously, why did we go to all that trouble and I let a friend talk me into taking things to a consignment store, where I know I don’t have the energy to keep sorting these items into the best things ever to “sell” because they pick apart what I take.  Bad ju-ju for me.  Not worth it.  But if you like to sell, by all means go for it!!  Side note: the only thing I do have patience for in this area is my favorite book store where I get tons of credit to get new precious lovelies and take home and read.  I have taught my girls this process and every summer we cull the books, tons of them and get new books to read all summer.  I feel very successful when I do this.  I feel unsuccessful trying to consign because if it has one spot or dog hair on it, I get a no.  I have 3 long-haired dogs y’all.  Word.

This is a never-ending process and we must all be vigilant or it will start to creep up on us again.  I know you can go forth and sort!  And believe me, you will feel much better after reclaiming your energy from clutter.  If it doesn’t bring you immense joy, release it! 

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