Wednesday, June 4, 2008

Increase the Flow

Dearest Goddesses,

I really enjoy Jack Canfield's monthly seminars - mostly because they're free - but in all seriousness - I get out of my head and he always has the most unique perspective on questions.

One question today was about clutter and how to get rid of it.

Clutter essentially represents something that is incomplete or an unmade decision. For most of us, we can just look at our desks (or cars, or closets...) Things get piled up instead of what Jack called - the 3 D's - Delegated, Decided or Dumped. It is our BELIEFS that keep the clutter in place. Beliefs about lack and scarcity can have us hold on tight to our possessions and our clutter. Or how about "I don't know enough"?? That one hit me! Piles of books, magazines, articles to read - it all becomes a distraction, keeping us from truly being successful. (on any given day you can find 3 open books on my desk of things that if I only read, I'll have this insight that will help me get started...!!

Think of energy like a river - or blood through our veins. If that flow gets interrupted - the river stops flowing, the blood stops flowing and there is the possibility of disease or death. The same is true for energy - and clutter is like a blood clot, blocking the flow (of life force, of ideas, of new opportunities or new things.)

We have so much in our lives these days that keep us distracted and keep us from not being present. Email, voicemail, Facebook, Myspace, television, the news...When do we just be??Imagine sitting in a silent, empty room - alone with your thoughts - now think of yourself at your desk - do you have the space to think?

In addition to connecting with the belief that is keeping your clutter in place and the incompletes that you are allowing to distract you (try delegating, deciding or dumping), here are some practical clutter clearing applications:

1. The MTO Approach (Minimum, Target, Outrageous). Think of a task and then write down three milestones. For instance, de-cluttering your garage: Minimum - Spend 1 hour going through the toolbox; Target - Spend 5 hours organizing the boxes; Outrageous - Take everything out of the garage, scrub the floors, paint the walls, go through every box and put it all back neatly. Because you have it all written down ahead of time, the momentum you create in getting started could lead to the Outrageous!
2. For everything you bring into the house, let two things go. If you go out and buy a book, give two books away.
3. Schedule the time to go through your clutter space instead of waiting for "someday".
4. Get a partner to challenge you. YOU are ATTACHED. They are not.
5. Enroll people to help you sell stuff on Ebay, or a garage sale or get stuff fixed that is broken.
6. Get boxes and as you are organizing, write whatever you place in a box onto an inventory sheet so that if you need something, you don't have to dig through the box, you can simply refer to the inventory sheet. If at the end of a year, you haven't looked in a box - let it go.
7. Acknowledge that you wear 20% of your clothes about 80% of the time. You don't have to keep that shirt that never fit right or the outdated shoes.
8. Ask the questions: "Why am I keeping this?" and "Can I replace it?"
9. Check out the book Organizing From the Inside Out by Julie Morganstern.

Happy de-cluttering!!

Love to you,

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