Clearing Your Space and Mind
Have you ever noticed that after clearing off your desk or cleaning out your purse or briefcase, you feel a lot more organized? Do you notice that you think more clearly? It is true that your inner mind reflects your outer environment, and your external environment affects your mind. Feng Shui experts teach about the flow of energy and how the placement of objects can affect your life and your health. The chi, or life force, gets stuck, and it can create an imbalance or even illness.
Several years ago, my former husband and I were looking for a home to buy. Our vision was a country home near a source of water. One home we looked at was sitting in a narrow valley between two mountains nearby. When I looked at the placement of the house, I thought energy would get stuck between the two mountains and whoever lived in that house would most likely get sick. I asked the realtor why the couple was selling. He shared with us that both people who lived there were ill and had to move closer to their children. It is important that energy be able to flow and not become stagnant. Sometimes, clutter can stop the movement of energy as well.
Have you ever found out that you bought two or more of the same book, forgetting you already bought it, yet never reading it? Do you have several of the same items or many items that you don’t use? Does the clutter make it difficult to find anything? How about technology? Do you know how to use all the features of your camera, smartphone and computer? Are you so overwhelmed with your electronic toys that you can’t remember how to use them? Maybe you can’t even find them!
The concept of “less is more” does not only mean using what you have, but also learning to live within your means! When you make purchases, focus on quality, not quantity. Use what you have before you buy something new.
Now is the time to make the commitment to clear your space. Notice what you use easily, without effort and regularly. A good rule of thumb is if you don’t use it or love it, give it away or sell it. You can begin by going through your home, room-by-room, and finding three items each day that you really don’t use or need. Create two piles, one “give away” pile and one “sell” pile. If the object is not worth much, you can save money and time by just giving it away to a charity. If you have a business, you can even write the donation amount off on your taxes.
1. Stop right now and set your kitchen timer or watch for 15 minutes. Pick an area of your house that needs some organization. Choose a drawer, bookshelf or even the kitchen table. Chose something that is manageable in a short amount of time. Organize and come back.
That felt great, didn’t it? When you take a 15 or 20-minute time interval, it makes organizing manageable, and the reward is great.
2. Sit and visualize your home. List in your journal the areas you need to clear out. Assign an order to the list and make a commitment to begin the clearing. Start with small areas so you feel successful. Next, pick an area where you feel the most overwhelmed by clutter. Break it down into smaller areas. It can be helpful to have paper bags or plastic containers to put items in that will take longer, such as paperwork or items you might find in a junk drawer. Clear the area, using one bag or container at a time, and either put the things away, give them away or add them to the “sale” pile.
Hint: When organizing paperwork, you can bring the bag into the living room and go through it when you are watching TV, listening to music or at the kitchen table when you are talking with your loved ones.
3. If the idea of touching the mess or moving anything is too much for you, take your journal and use these sentence stems:
I am most overwhelmed when . . .
I feel secure when . . .
If I were organized, I’d be . . .
A simple step I can make today is . . .
4. Call a friend or a family member who can come over and be with you when you organize. This shared energy, even if they don’t help, makes the task seem easier.
5. Set up a family or neighborhood yard sale. As you do this, you will find it easier and easier to let go of items you don’t use. Allow someone to be your muse for organization.
And last, and maybe the best for you, hire a home organizer or even a housekeeper to help you begin this process. It will be well worth the money spent.