We often hear about the value of decluttering and organizing homes, closets and offices to create a harmonious and peaceful life. After the task is done, most report feeling “lighter”, “refreshed” and more energized. But many forget to invest that same amount of time and energy into decluttering our minds, and our hearts.
We all hold onto emotions, feelings, and experiences. Most bring us wonderful memories, but some, like resentment, past hurt, regret, anger, envy can be damaging, especially if we don’t figure out a way to clear them out – like we clear out a closet.
You can’t tackle everything (just like you can’t take on all the clutter in a home). But in the spirit of “cleaning up”, pick one or two things cluttering your mind and heart and replace it with some bright, new space.
Shrink Your Problems – When you declutter your house, you might hesitate about a pile of toys, and then before you know it, someone tells you to keep them “just in case.”
Think of your list of “problems” the same way. If you deal with a problem early on, it’s easier to solve. For example, if you’re worried about telling your family that you can’t join them at the annual picnic, tell them now, not in two months when the party has been planned and everyone, including your kids, are expecting to go.
Let Go – Letting go means you are allowing yourself to feel lighter and move forward with ease. Learning to let go of control is a major force in finding inner peace.
Perhaps you’ve always felt unappreciated in your past job. It’s time to just let it go. The situation was unfair but now imagine opening the door and pushing it away.
Letting go of a resentment is a bit like letting go of something you bought. Now that item is cluttering up your life. Time to get rid of it.
Forgive – Forgiving someone does not mean forgetting a wrongful action or excusing how hurt you are. You forgive because of the impact it has on your mind, body, and spirit.
Think of it like giving away something that was a mistake to buy in the first place – those skinny jeans, that exercise equipment, those stiletto shoes that hurt your feet. So you made a mistake, or perhaps the sales person was too pushy. Forgive and move on.
Remove the Worry – Most things we worry about today are not going to happen tomorrow. Focus on what you can control. Sure, your daughter might not make the softball team, but think about how much fun she has on the team. Once you remove the worry around things that might happen, you’ll have more room for being grateful for what is real.
Take Control of Your Thoughts – You have continuous mind chatter talking to you all day: both positive and negative. Clear out negative thoughts when they enter your mind.
It’s like the mantra organizers suggest you use when cleaning out a house: Re-use, recycle, reduce, keep or throw out. Clear out some space!