Clutter in our lives, wherever it appears, drains us of our energy. Have you ever noticed how an unresolved conflict in an important relationship distracts you from having fun with that person? Or how irritating it is to start dinner in a dirty kitchen? Or how it seems important to organize your desk before beginning a project?
How Do You Start De-Cluttering?
De-cluttering is a practice that can add satisfaction to our lives. It is a necessary part of growing — to put away or leave behind what is no longer important. Then we are freer and more energized to move forward in our lives.
Below is a list of some high impact strategies to de-clutter your life. All of them start with AWARENESS and FOCUS on the things that are in the way of having a fulfilling life right now. Success with any of them requires CHOICE and ACTION — often we could begin in the next 15 minutes of our lives.
PAY ATTENTION TO ENERGY DRAINERS
So, what is draining your energy right now? Situations, people, undone projects, clutter in your physical space, your habits? Consider your life at home and at work. Visit each room of your home and workspace and consider what aspects of each are draining energy from you. Think about the relationships that are most important to you. Write every draining thing down (use the attached list). Make no commitment to act —yet.
DOWNLOAD YOUR ENERGY DRAINERS CHECKLIST
MUST YOU OVER-COMMIT?
I often see clients that overextend themselves, which in turn creates clutter in their lives. Figure out what is doable, realistic, healthy…what is enough? On the back of the energy drainer checklist, answer this question: What is a small change I would like to make in this part of my life?
SELECT CONVERSATIONS and RELATIONSHIPS
Experiment with saying no. Do you have a friendship that is currently dragging you down? Are you participating in conversations that you have no interest in participating in? Have you tried to say no? Invest in people that invest in you. On the back of the energy drainer checklist, answer this statement: I would like to put some limits on these people in my life and I would like to spend time with these people.
ENVISION A WORLD AS YOU WANT IT
Imagine your space and your “stuff” the way you would feel most comfortable with it. Hold the thought! Picture your desk how you would like it to be…see what happens. If we can envision how we want things to be, they become more tangible.
UN-CLUTTER THE STUFF IN YOUR PHYSICAL SPACES
It can be hard to declutter when you’re overwhelmed. Spend 15 minutes de-cluttering/reorganizing any space in your control. Suggestions: your purse, a counter or tabletop, a bookcase, etc. De-cluttering means putting items away, giving them away or tossing them. If you need it, create a box or bag for “Don’t Know What to Do with” items. Revisit that box in a week and reconsider what to keep or toss.
ABANDON A BELIEF
Abandon a belief that ties you in knots. State your relinquishment out loud. For example, “I abandon the belief that I must be seen in a good light by others. “ Or “I abandon the belief that I must be right.” Live without the belief for a day, a week, a month. Evaluate what happens when you live without your old way of thinking about things and then decide what you think.
EMBRACE A BELIEF THAT FEEDS YOUR SPIRIT
Embrace a belief that makes you smile or energize you. When you are ready, find an opportunity to tell someone what you believe. Remember, our greatest freedom is to change our attitude over any set of circumstances.
DE-CLUTTER YOUR EMOTIONAL LIFE
Are there emotional problems in your life that could be solved by turning down or upping the volume? For example, could you turn down the volume of which you hear a critical person in your life? If you feel bored, would you consider turning your volume up?
DE-CLUTTER YOUR TIME
Assign yourself a block of time every week to do nothing. Assign a block of time every week to do nothing. Really. I mean it. Let me clarify…doing nothing does not nourish everyone. This is about self-care. Block out time to do something that you would like to do but never get around to.
READ YOUR LIST OF ENERGY DRAINERS. Pick one energy-draining item and resolve to work on it.
Keep your focus, expand your sense of what is possible, and hold yourself accountable to address this item on your list.
Thank you, Toni Clark, Ph.D., PCC for the list. www.toniclarkcoaching.com