Summer is getting ready to kick off and it's a perfect time to declutter. Decluttering helps us to remove the negative so the positive can enter. Purging/Decluttering helps us to feel calm and peaceful. This might be the perfect time to declutter our material and emotional clutter for the next chapter in life.
When we have too much clutter in our lives, we become stressed out, overwhelmed and stagnate. When people talk about clutter, they talk about physical clutter at their homes, offices, closets, etc.
For me, when we talk about clutter, we must look at the emotional clutter first. Emotional clutter causes the physical clutter. If you only remove the physical clutter but don’t deal with the emotional clutter in your head, the physical clutter will eventually re-appear.
Here are some tips on Decluttering your life:
Why we have so much physical clutter:
1. We live in a society where we have so much stuff - our society has created a world where we can get stuff relatively easy, fast and cheap. You don’t even need to leave your house to accumulate stuff.
2. We use material stuff as a sign of success. The bigger the house, the expensive care, the designer labels, etc. all equal success in our country. This makes people think the more stuff we have, the happier we will be. This is not true. Material stuff, power, status, titles, etc. bring a boost of short-term happiness but for long term happiness we need things money can’t buy.
3. We clutter our lives up with so many things to do. We're always running around following a to-do list. Clients have expressed to me, if they aren’t busy, they are not being productive or if they aren’t busy, they will be listening to their own thoughts or get bored. We need time to re-fresh and re-fuel by being in silence and listening to our own thoughts. With boredom comes creativity and curiosity. Don’t occupy your time with filler activities.
4. The lack of syndrome – a lot of my clients have grown up with families who went through the great depression or were kids of parents who went through it which leads to a fear of not having enough. We need to look at our lives realistically and become aware of our financial situations to know if we really need to worry about not having enough or is it a learned trait.
When looking at Physical clutter you need to ask yourself:
1. Do I have clutter due to time management?
2. Do I have clutter due to space issues?
3. Is my clutter due to a life change or major illness - with Covid 19 we may experience more clutter than usual. If that is the case, ask yourself, pre Covid 19, did I have a lot of clutter? If the answer is no, then don’t stress, you will go back to your norm when this is all done. Remember, every situation is temporary.
4. Is my clutter affecting my mood, relationships, thought process or causing danger at my house?
5. Is your clutter causing you to feel daily stress or is it a reminder of areas that are not working in your life?
6. Where is my physical clutter? Home? Office? Car? Pocketbook? Wallet? Backpack? etc.
7. When looking at areas of physical clutter ask yourself - is this clutter bringing me pleasure or frustration/stress? If it brings you pleasure and isn’t causing a problem in relationships or a danger, then enjoy it. If not, it’s time to dive in and de-clutter. What is clutter to me might not be for you.
8. Declutter anger with forgiveness – when we hold onto anger, it effects every area of our life. Forgiveness is done for you and you only. It’s not about the other person. To forgive, you must make the choice and commitment to the process.
9. Declutter the overstimulation of technology by unplugging at night about an hour before bed, during dinner and when socializing. Spending time in nature is another great way to declutter all the mental noise in your head.
10. Emotional Detox – look at the people you spend the most time with. Remove any toxic people from your life and you will naturally remove some of the emotional clutter. If you can’t remove them, then set up strict boundaries and limitations so you can feel mentally/emotionally healthy.