About five years ago I took a one day seminar on clearing out clutter. It was something that interested me at the time even though I didn't have a lot of clutter and I was really surprised by one of the main tools this class taught me. It's something I still strive to use more often. When I remember to implement it, my whole life works better, not just the clutter clearing part. Can you guess what it is?
It sounds simple (and it is) but what I learned is that the key to digging yourself out from clutter is getting rest and being relaxed.
We live in a culture where we're supposed to be busy, working on this working on that, making progress, getting things done. But if this level of activity crosses over into a frenzy (always going out, never staying in, never having a moment of nothing in your day) there is no time to be thoughtful about what you keep around you or how you really want to live. And if you're in a state of busy-ness most of the time, you're not only more likely to hang on to things you don't love but you're more likely to keep buying things too!
During the class the woman giving the lecture encouraged us all to take naps, to make being relaxed a priority, even if we just had to steal it here and there. Obviously we can't all quit our jobs and hang out on the couch all day, but we can make an effort to take things down a notch, opt to stay in sometimes (without the tv on and without surfing the internet), go to bed a bit earlier one night a week.
A trick I learned is to give myself more than enough time to get to meetings and appointments. This way I'm not stressed out in the car and if I'm early, then great, I get to check out a new store, take in the weather, move a bit slower. In the same spirit, instead of dedicating the weekend to clearing out the living room, spend 15 minutes every day, do it at a normal pace and really pay attention to what you're doing.
Has slowing down helped you build the kind of home you love?
[Image from Kim and Paul's Twin Peak]
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