As the seasons start to change from dreary winter over to sunshine-y spring, it seems that we all get a yen to freshen up our space. I know I've been rarin' to get into the unfinished side of my attic and dig through the boxes that have been there since we moved in back in September so I can see what's what and what needs to go where - ditto with the stuff in the basement! I'm also constantly looking at the rooms that we've "semi-completed" to see what I can do to finish them and make them prettier, instead of just functional. And don't even get me started on the windows! Yes, spring cleaning time is upon us...
Oprah's magazine this month focuses on de-cluttering, which is a major part of most spring cleaning projects, and she has some interesting thoughts on applying that theory beyond our living quarters. She acknowledges that she has too many shoes (and skirts and tank tops and tee shirts and...) , and suggests that we look at our relationship with our "things": "Do they promote joy, beauty and usefulness, or are they burdensome?" She also states that she and her friends have opted for "lifestyle changes" - as opposed to diets - and are choosing "foods that give you real energy and love you back". She goes on to say:
This principle alone eliminates a lot of clutter. And once you get that far, you want other areas of your life decluttered as well. In case you're looking for inspiration, here's my list:
- Relationship to self - good riddance to decisions that don't support self-care, self-value, and self-worth.
- Relationship to others - do the people in your life give you energy and encourage your personal growth, or do they block that growth with dysfunctional dynamics and outdated scripts? If they don't support you as a loving, open, free and spontaneous being: Goodbye!
- Relationship to emotional life - out with stagnant patterns that no longer serve you.
- Relationship to work - not only reducing the "clutter" of paperwork, inefficiency, and overcommunication, but also striving to create a balanced workload and make your work invigorating, inspiring, collaborative, and empowering to others.
- Relationship to nature and play - seeing these as expressions of love and opportunities to fill your life with truth and joy.
To me, all of this is the real deal of de-cluttering, a process that's ever-evolving as you move closer to the self you were meant to be.
And saying goodbye to too many shoes is a darn good start.
Ah yes, many places to declutter - all of them very worthwhile! I mentioned last week that time gets away from me and I end up feeling scattered and ineffective, so my relationships to work and play get totally out of whack. I decided that it would be in my best interest to make myself a schedule. That way, when it's time to work I can put my attention and focus there, and when it's time to play, I can do it guilt-free.
Because my life is what it is and includes factors that throw a wrench in the works and throw my intended schedule off on a fairly regular basis, I realize that this schedule is subject to change. I am allowing myself to not be so attached to it that my psyche suffers when this happens - I'm looking at it as a time-management tool and a place to start the decluttering process. Since that's not very interesting (or inspiring) to look at, I also made this:
Stamps: Inkadinkado/Brenda Walton Flourishes, Hampton Art Friendship, Close to My Heart Hugs and Kisses; Ink: Close to My Heart Blush, Hollyhock, Olive and Sweet Leaf, Versafine Onyx Black; Other: Wood blocks, butterfly charm
I decided that I wanted to put a little more emphasis on the relationship to others, so I made a couple of blocks to put in my space. This was a really fast, easy, fun project, and free, to boot! Since I don't mount my rubber stamps, I have many, many, many of them ready and waiting to be altered, and - of course - the ink and stamps were already there, as well. The charm is one of those "had to have" purchases that I've dragged around with me on move after move and never used ('til now...).
What will you create this week? Here's Mr. Linky so you can show me: