Are you buried in excess stuff, more possessions than you need or want?
Is your home, schedule, brain bloated with all the should haves and could haves?
Are you seeking a way to streamline your home/office?
Are you striving for a simpler, stress-free life?
If you answer YES or just want to tweak your space to be more relaxing, then pledge to make 2021 a year of losing weight.
Time to purge — environmentally and physically.
FOOD FOR THOUGHT: There is no sense in organizing everything you own, especially if what you own is hidden in the back of the closet, junk drawers, attic, basement, garage, or in self-storage facilities. Purge first and then organize those items that are truly important to you, those items that provide joy and beauty to your life.
Get in the habit of questioning why you own something.
- Do you use it?
- Does it add value to your life?
- Is it a treasure that brings beauty into your home?
Remember, hoarding means no one is using it – not you or anyone else!
While standing in the supermarket checkout line, take a few minutes and peruse the supply of magazines. You will invariably see headlines for articles on how to lose weight fast and easy, especially now with the push for New Year’s resolutions. Every year people resolve to go on a diet and lose weight. How about you? These same magazines are also filled with articles on how to get organized. The two top resolutions year after year!
Let’s combine these two concepts – weight loss and organization – and talk about eliminating the excess. In other words, dispose of all that stuff you have hidden in crowded closets and drawers, clear off the shelves piled high with unread books and magazines, and sort through the papers on the desk, in the file cabinets and on the counters. And, if that is not enough, think about all those metal cube buildings in almost every community—the self-storage facilities. Why would anyone want to own so much stuff and have to continually pay monthly storage fees just to hide it all away? Or, why would anyone purchased a $30K (or $50K) automobile and leave it in the driveway because the garage is a storage depot for excess stuff.
Before you can even begin to simplify and organize, you must understand why you have this excess weight. What is the underlying cause of this accumulation? Is it simply the fact that it is available so therefore you buy? Are you the recipient of hand-me-downs and gifts from friends and relatives? Does Madison Avenue advertisements trigger a powerful want response?
Our buffet tables are laden with choices. The supermarket shelves display every fruit and vegetable the world can produce. Electronic stores put on a show far beyond our wildest technological imagination. Fashion gurus dictate colors and styles to be worn every season. So many choices bombard our senses, and we just have to have it all. Well, maybe not all, but a good portion that we believe is our right and privilege. Consequently, our obese environment is the direct result of the choices we make every day.
Time to take action — It’s your choice
- Identify where excess/overabundance comes from.
- Decide if these possessions are nurturing you and your environment, or are they creating stress.
- Gently let others know you are already overcrowded and want to create a peace haven, a simpler lifestyle.
- Time to diet!
Now that you have looked around your over-stuffed home, closets, drawers, counters or even the space in your office, your next step is a diet. Time to lose weight. Instead of trying to decide which foods to eat (or not!), start with your environment and see what happens to your physical, mental and emotional well being. Author and organizing guru, Peter Walsh states, “A houseful of clutter may not be the only reason people pack on extra pounds, but research proves that it plays a big role.” (Check out Walsh’s book: Lose the Clutter, Lose the Weight)
Listen up and let me caution you about dieting dangers. When you go on a food diet, you usually restrict certain food categories or pledge to eat only unprocessed foods. The same is true with decluttering your environment — you restrict purchasing, start cleaning and pledge to have only certain items in your home. Do these strategies work? Sometimes, yes, for a period of time. But eventually the excess weight creeps back. Why? Because you didn’t target the cause!
When you vow to get organized and set aside a weekend cleaning frenzy, you grab some garbage bags and start tossing. You feverishly work to create some breathing space. However, at some point, it becomes overwhelming and you end up with a worse mess than when you started. Are you really dieting or just rearranging?
Do you remember the story of the hare and the tortoise? The hare starts off at top speed, cruising right along. Eventually he looks back and realizes he is way ahead and winning is a snap. Running at this pace is tiring and he thinks he has plenty of time for a quick nap–just what he needs. While the hare is snoozing away, the tortoise’s slow steady steps carry him to the finish line.
Are you the hare or the tortoise? Did you allot a Saturday morning to finally organize the front hall closet and in the process got sidetracked with the laundry, had to straighten the back door area for the leftover hats and mittens, and then had to clean out a spot in the garage for the sports equipment? Did you lose focus on the front hall closet?
Cleaning vs. Organizing
Clean is not the same as organizing? Cleaning is a process to maintain the condition of an item or an area. Organization is being able to find what you want when you want it.
Let your mantra be, “Enough, but not too much.” There are dangers in running full speed ahead without an action plan. Breakdown large projects into bite-size pieces, set a timer for 15-30 minutes, stay focused on the project, and win the race one-small-step-at-a-time.
- Are you ready to take the next step? CLICK HERE to connect with me and I’ll work with you on your plan of attack.
- Check out the many articles on the Learning Center page.
*Peace Pilgrim (1908-1981) ~ From 1953 to 1981 a silver-haired woman calling herself the “Peace Pilgrim” walked more than 25,000 miles on a personal pilgrimage for peace. She vowed to “remain a wanderer until mankind has learned the way of peace, walking until given shelter and fasting until given food.”
In the course of her 28-year pilgrimage, she touched the hearts, minds and lives of thousands of individuals all across North America. Her message was both simple and profound – enough, but not too much. https://www.peacepilgrim.org/