"When you are discontent, you always want more, more, more. Your desire can never be satisfied. But when you practice contentment, you can say to yourself, 'Oh yes - I already have everything that I really need.' "
- Walk through your home, one room at a time. You need a writing tablet and pen to carry with you. Begin at the door through which you enter the room.
- Turn to your left, and work clockwise through the room.
- Take note of any and all areas in the room that drain your energy as you look at them or think about them-the areas that require your attention: items that need repair, things that aren't where they belong, untidy or dirty areas. Simply write down everything that needs to be done to make it a comfortable space that supports the activities you do, or want to do, there. Your list might read as follows: "repair plaster near window, touch up paint, rid of magazines, sort desk drawers, clean carpet, repot plant, new chair," and so forth.
- When you are finished with one room, go to the next and begin a new list on another page.
- Continue until you have gone through your entire living space. These lists will become your marching orders in terms of changing your environment to support your life. Later, you'll begin in any room of your choosing, and attend to each of the items on the list until the room is done
Clutter test #1: for your things and the space itself
- Is it Beautiful?
- Is it Untidy or Disorganized?
- Does it fit the space?
- Is it Unfinished?
Clutter test #2: for each object
- Does it lift my energy when I think about it or look at it? Use your intuition to recognize whether you feel energized or not.
- Do I absolutely love it?Is it just "nice" or does it really inspire me? How much of this kind of "thing" do I need and do I already have enough of it around? Even if I love it, does it also carry "sad' associations for me? If you don't love it, you can (and need to) leave it!
- Is it genuinely useful? When was the last time I used it? More importantly, when am I going to use it next? If I get rid of it, can I find another one fairly easily? Use it or lose it!
De-cluttering keys to success
- One space/room at a time!
- Set a time limit!
- Stay in the room for the entire time!
- If you haven't already done your walk-through, do a walk-through. Use The Clutter Test (Part One) for the space.
- Do The Clutter Test (Part Two) for each object.
Tools (just a few boxes)
- Trash box, for stuff you throw out.
- Repairs box, for stuff that needs fixing.
- Recycling box, for stuff that you aren't going to keep, but can give to someone else. Can be sub-categorized into: Gift box; Charity box; Returns box; Sell box.
- Transit box, for stuff you're keeping but belongs somewhere else (in another room). DO NOT leave the room to put these things away-put them away when you're done with the space.
- Dilemma box, for stuff you're not sure what to do with.
- Any Time. Day or night, any time of year, rain or shine. The start of any season is natural, so make use of that energy.
- Fast or Slow. You choose how much and how quickly to tackle your clutter.
- If You're Stressed. Clutter-clearing is one of the best therapies for worry, stress, anxiety. If you become overwhelmed, just do it one small step at a time and call a buddy for support.
- If You're Busy. Start small, with just one drawer. It'll feel so good, you'll want to do more.
- How to Let Go. Allow yourself to think through your associated thoughts with things, and allow yourself to feel through your emotions about them. Let your intuition guide you if you experience resistance to letting go of something: there may be a gift in the resistance, something that the resistance is trying to tell you about yourself.