Have you ever seen a baby, with his hands full of sippy cups and stuffed animals, try to pick up something else without letting anything go? I get to watch this scene unfold several times a day with my 12-month-old. It is adorable to see in a sweet and clumsy new toddler, but not so cute in a 30-something-year-old. This instinct stays with us and shows up all over the place in our adult lives. We all need reminders to make room for abundance in our lives.
When I am organizing with my clients, all of whom have different organizing problems and different lives, I find myself sharing the same truth. It is one of the universal truths that apply to all of us, because we all had, have, or will have clutter. Mental and physical clutter. The truth is: when we are getting rid of clutter, there will be casualties. It will happen. You will get rid of something that you will want later.
The eventuality of missing something may sound like a good reason to keep it all and hold on to everything. Despite the likely chance that you will not remember 99.9% of what you give away, the idea that you might miss the 0.01% makes you want to hold on and never let go. It is your human instinct, but it can come with devastating consequences.
The devastating consequences of holding on to clutter aren’t just a hoarded home that hurts those who live there and anyone close to them. It is lost time and energy that could have been put towards doing something meaningful, something you love that makes your world a little brighter. Clutter is a weight that has built on top of you so gradually, you don’t even realize anymore that it is holding you down. It is harmed relationships, depression, and anxiety. It is giving power to our stuff, sometimes our really nice stuff, to control our lives.
When you are getting rid of junk and clutter, there will be casualties and a few regrets. You may lose the battle sometimes, but you can still win the war. Just keep fighting. The freedom on the other side is worth it. Talk to anyone who is a reformed pack-rat/hoarder. They never want to go back. Sometimes it takes getting to the other side to truly understand what you’ve been missing.
Remember to make room for abundance. Don’t overbook your schedule. Don’t overfill your home. Set boundaries on relationships. Let go of grudges. Let go of that container of holiday decor you haven’t used in 2 years or that craft stuff that doesn’t even sound fun to make anymore. Make room to dream again. Give yourself room to change. Remember that casualties of clutter are okay and just part of the process.
Here is my sweet little cookie hoarder trying to figure out how to hold a cookie in both hands and still pick up his sippy cup!
I have lots of thoughts on clutter. Read some: 91 Day De-Clutter Challenge, Mini De-Clutter Challenge, Let Go Of Unused Holiday Stuff, Your JUNK or Your Life, Secrets of the Organized, and When In Doubt Get Rid Of It. That should keep you occupied for a while.
Check back Friday for the start of the Dreaming-of-Spring Cleaning Challenge!!