Tuesday, January 21, 2014

It's Time to Make Room for the Good Stuff

In times of transition, I have a fierce need to clear my space.  

Not just my physical space, but a widespread sweep of all the clutter that is glomming up my days.  Too much junk mail in my inbox, noise, time spent in ways that I resent...and right now, I am so ready to cut the cord. 

Are you ready for a shift?  And not just a shift in trying to find the positive, the good, the gratitude that you're wrangling out of moments that result from choosing what you don't want. I mean, are you ready to clear some internal and external space to allow for transition to occur?

If you're ready, it's time to seriously take an industrial-sized Swiffer to your life. To seek out every little nook where you are holding that which needs to be let go. To be uncompromisingly (yes-this is not a time for compromise!) ruthless in setting free what you no longer want to be a part of your life.

Do you have a house mostly full of things you don't want but feel obligated to keep?  If you're like me, you have walls that aren't the colors you chose but can't find time to paint.  The furniture is mostly from family members or former houses and just don't work now.  The closets are stuffed full sentiment or that which you feel guilty to let go of.

And then there are the things we might use someday, when we have the lake house or that garage sale or that might work perfectly in that next art project.

It's time to declare Enough!  To send what we do not love to a new place with someone that will receive joy from having it.  

You need to be ruthless with weeding out whatever it is that is cluttering both your mind and your physical space and the reason is this:  You want to make room to invite the good things in.  

It sounds simple, but think of this:

If your inbox is full of junk mail, will you miss the important invitation to join something you've been dreaming of?

If your mind is cluttered with thoughts of the past are you missing what's happening right now?

If you are settling for Aunt Margaret's hand me down furniture, will you have space for that fabulous piece you just spied at the Antique Fair?

Keeping what you don't really want (no matter what it is) actually drives away or holds at bay something you really do want.

It's time to release and here is my challenge:

Everyday, find at least 3 things to clear or cleanse from your mental or physical space. 

Need ideas?

I recommend choosing a small area to attack:
  • Go through your bathroom cabinets (the bane of my existence!) and toss old makeup, mostly empty bottles of gunk, hair spray from the 80's...you only have to get rid of 3 things, but once you get going, who knows what might happen?
  • Ransack your inbox and unsubscribe to sites you're no longer interested in (except this one of course...)
  • Say "no" when they ask you at stores for your email address.  I do this with no explanation and it delights me.  Here is practice for you:  Store: "Can I have your email address?" You:  "No" 
  • Put yourself on the "Do Not Send Junk Mail" list (you can find the contact at the bottom of any credit card advertisement)
  • Tackle small spaces in your art studio and get rid of old projects, dried up paints and use up stuff you thought you might one day work in somewhere (we all have them, it's a dirty little artist secret) Don't go for the gold and try and do the whole room in one day.  Just pick one little area to start with like that box of collage items...
  • Give yourself a few minutes of quiet meditation each morning before you dive in to your day.  Like sit on your bed and listen to your breath for 5 minutes. 
My goal is to have an actual space for everything I own that isn't the kitchen island, dining room table or any other flat surface I can find.  Splitting it up into tiny, little chunks works for me.

So here is the mantra:  "Declutter!  Purge!  Set it Free!  And open the door for all good things to come."