Clutter is nothing more than the manifestation of indecision. – Wendy Ellin
I discovered this quote recently when it was shared on LinkedIn. I thought – how insightful. At times, clutter is not necessarily being lazy or messy, we are avoid deciding what to do with something or about something. Magazines were piling up on one of my end tables because I could not decide whether to read them, recycle them, donate them to the library or keep them for my Vision Board. Until I made a decision, they were taking up space in our living room making it look cluttered.
Then I considered the angst and stress that having the magazines piling up created in the house. My husband gently asking what my plans were with the magazines. The cats knocking them onto the floor when running across them. My stress when looking at them because I had not made a decision. Eventually, I made the decision to store them in a closet to have when I make my Vision Board.
Consider other areas of our lives where there is “clutter”. Not necessarily physical clutter but mental clutter. Worrying about things out of our control. Putting off making a phone call because it may be an uncomfortable conversation. Discontent due to comparing your life to another’s. This is the type of mental clutter which can prevent us from doing things of importance and living our best life.
Let’s clean up the physical and mental clutter in our lives. Start by assessing what is cluttering your life. Walk around your physical environment and make a list of areas that you feel are cluttered. Prioritize which area to tackle first then set a deadline to take care of it. Determine what family member(s) can help with those areas. Taking 15 minutes each day to deal with physical clutter will lead to a sense of peace and accomplishment.
Then deal with that mental clutter. Set the timer for 5 minutes and write down whatever is on your mind – deadlines, difficulties, gratitude – include positive and negative. Are there thoughts which you can set free? Concerns that are not in your control that need to be released? What items are a necessity and need to be managed – making that phone call, paying the bills? Set deadlines for taking care of those items.
When writing down this mental clutter, you create a picture that is more manageable, less overwhelming. As the saying goes “Eat an elephant one bite at a time”. Tackle each item from that list one at a time. In time, your list will become smaller. Then you will feel a sense of accomplishment and peace in taking care of both the physical and mental clutter.
Other time of mind clutter are negative thoughts floating around. How are you talking to yourself? Are you supportive and positive, or negative and doubting? We are own best cheerleaders. Remind yourself that you are beautiful, amazing, strong and a person of value.
Throughout this process, create new habits which will prevent the clutter. For the physical clutter, deal with items daily rather than letting them pile up. For the mental clutter, create new habits which will lead to a more productive life – setting deadlines, meditation, positive self-talk. Don’t let the clutter control you; you control the clutter.
We are on the Earth to assist one another. Find the support in your life that can hold you accountable and challenge you to live up to your full potential. A self-leadership coach can be that person. Let’s talk about how we can take control of that clutter together.