Spring Cleaning is not a new phenomena. In fact, it goes back thousands of years. The idea of having a good sort out and a deep clean pops up in many cultures and lots of different formats.
These days, of course, the term Spring Cleaning has been replaced by ‘Decluttering’ as Marie Kondo appears in books, articles and TV shows, explaining how to declutter our lives.
What does your life’s clutter mean?
The physical things we acquire and then cling to are often highly symbolic of what is going on in the rest of your life.
All the Clutter in your life represents what you are tolerating in your life. Perhaps you are holding on to something from your past; or maybe are still feeling sad about something that has gone out of your life; perhaps you know something is broken or redundant but you can’t find it in you to throw it out; or it could be that you don’t want to get rid of a gift in case the sender comes round for a visit and you don’t want to hurt their feelings.
Clutter and your financial situation.
Most of the time we hold on to things we don’t use or need out of a scarcity mentality. We might have had parents or grandparents who were war-babies, living in a time of rationing and not sure where the next meal was coming from. They held on to their belongings tightly and lived in constant fear that they might lose everything.
To throw out a perfectly serviceable item just because is wasn’t used was waste.That is not our lives. We live in a society where there is enough – more than enough.
Yet we often have the feeling of not enough. We wake up and say to ourselves, I did not have enough sleep. Or at the end of the day, I did not do enough today. That sets the tone for more not enough thoughts, I am not good enough, I don’t have enough…
So we fill our lives with stuff. We go shopping to fill the feeling of not being good enough (prompted by adverts which show us how the right brand of washing power will make the whole family laugh and sing).
Create space in your life
By getting rid of the things you no longer use, you make space in your life. Space for new things, new energy, new ideas, new gifts…
I have been doing this for years. It gives me the most amazing feeling of being free.
Here, then, are my top tips to declutter.
- Go through your computer and get rid of all old unwanted emails: especially all the ‘temptation’ emails (‘Special Offers,’ ‘Buy one get one free,’ ‘Only seven days to but this incredible product.’)
- Declutter your Social Media of all negative comments and people who are ‘mood hoovers.’ Social Media is a great place to connect but it should be uplifting.
- Take one room at a time and then work your way through cupboards and drawers. Take your unwanted clothes to the charity shops or sell them at a car boot sale or online.
- What’s in your spare room? This is usually full of things you no longer require (lofts and attics are even worse!) If you can’t remember when you last used it, sell it or give it away.
- Clear out the office of all those pens you never use or which don’t work. Donate them to a school or charity who can make use of them.
- Bless someone else with your unwanted gifts. Only keep things which, as Marie Kondo says, “give you joy.”
- De-clutter your laundry room. Throw the odd socks away – the other sock is not going to turn up. I once read that they should have a Tinder for socks to find your match!
Even if you only spend 30 minutes a day on decluttering, you’ll be amazed how quickly you will create space – both in your home and in your mind.