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De-clutter – clear a space: clear your mind

According to an ancient Chinese philosophy, clearing out the old is vital if you are to attract and invite the new into your life. An almighty clear out will help you let go of the past and give you an immense positive feeling that your life is moving on and making way for a fresh start!

De-cluttering may sound like a laborious task but it serves one fantastic purpose: to make you feel instantly calmer and better about yourself! De-cluttering your home – or even areas within your home – will give you a more positive outlook and clear your mind. The onset of Spring gives us the ideal incentive to take control of our clutter and the opportunity to enjoy a much needed, feel good energy boost!

Living in a disorganised space and living with the knowledge that clutter is all around you depletes your energy, wastes your time and heightens your level of stress. Your energy is zapped every time you need to find something and every time you look at the mess – resulting in you feeling utterly drained. It is no wonder you are exhausted by the end of the day and find little time to do all the things you enjoy doing when clutter and chaos takes up so much of your energy.

We often feel we must keep everything we have accumulated simply because it would be a waste of money to throw it away. You therefore have cupboards and rooms full of things that you never get round to using and simply don’t need. Instead of hoarding these items, you can put them to good use by recycling them, selling them at car boot sales or on eBay to make some money, or by donating them to those more needy than yourself via charitable organisations – all making you feel great in the process!

Most of the things you save, even the papers you file, will never be used or looked at again. Don’t be afraid of discarding things you don’t use or need. If you are afraid to get rid of something, put a date on it and if you haven’t used it by that date, get rid of it then.

Letting go of things that remind you of your past can be difficult. We tend to keep things just in case. Look in your wardrobe and assess which items of clothing haven’t been worn for the last twelve months. Worse still, how many still have their original sales tag attached? It is safe to say that if you haven’t worn these items by now, you never will!

If you feel unable to do any de-cluttering until you have several hours or a full weekend available, or you are waiting to feel in the mood and there’s nothing better to do, STOP! It is that thinking that is partly responsible for your current clutter in the first place.

The best way to approach de-cluttering is to assess what needs to be done. Set realistic goals and allocate your time accordingly. If the clutter around you is starting to create stress in your life but you have little time to do anything about it, start by addressing small jobs.

Make a list for each room in the house of all the areas that you need to sort through and organise. Make a commitment each week to focus on one area of your home and schedule some time to get it cleared. As you go through your home, look at each item and ask yourself whether you need it, want it or will ever use it. Some areas may take longer than a week. Enlist the rest of the family to do this with you. As you complete each task, check it off your list.

Begin by doing just five or ten minutes of tidying up (dealing with the ‘right thing, wrong place’ clutter) at night before you go to bed. This will make surprising inroads into your clutter within one week – and it will also allow you to wake up to a more organised household each day.

Your main objective throughout your de-cluttering endeavours is not only to remove unnecessary clutter from your home, but to ensure a manageable and workable system is created that can be maintained long-term. You should focus on creating organised systems that can be sustained and used to make your life easier.

A great way to stay on top of clutter is to practice mindfulness. Begin to be aware of tidying up after yourself as much as possible – teach and encourage others in the household to do the same. Being able to organise and de-clutter are valuable skills that you can teach your children from a very young age. The first hurdle is to de-clutter: the second is for the entire family to maintain a clutter-free environment. Tidying and organising then becomes a much easier job.

Invest in quality storage systems that are aesthetically pleasing. There is no point buying cheap filing systems and containers if they give you no pleasure – you simply won’t use them. Treat each purchase as a long-term investment into good housekeeping and organisation. You won’t regret it!

When you are able to go into any drawer, cupboard or room in your house and find everything in order, you will enjoy your home. Celebrate your accomplishments! Offering yourself a reward at the end of an arduous task can be a great incentive. Promise yourself a pampering treat, time spent with friends or simply a luxurious bath without interruption!

Top Tips for de-cluttering:

  • Understand the benefits to be gained and use these as motivation
  • Schedule regular time for de-cluttering and mark it in your diary/calendar
  • Make a list for each room in the house stating all the tasks to be completed
  • Complete a room at a time so you soon see the benefits of de-cluttering
  • Begin each room by completing some of the smaller jobs so you can clearly see the progress you are making
  • Break down bigger jobs into small bite-size manageable tasks. Action each until you have completed the bigger job
  • Designate a file or box for incoming paperwork such as bills and receipts
  • Donate your unwanted and unused items to charity
  • Get your children involved and make it fun – teach them where things go and how to put them away properly
  • Create a good housekeeping system and use it regularly
  • Love your uncluttered, relaxed surroundings – you will soon learn to avoid cluttering by enjoying your new-found space
  • Celebrate your accomplishments along the way!

As you begin to de-clutter you will begin to experience many emotions – sentimentality about items collected in the past, guilty about wasting money, generous about giving things to charity, relief at getting rid of so much unwanted things. Ultimately you should let go of all the negative feelings such as guilt, because the reasons making you feel this way have happened in the past. You must let go of the past and embrace a new, organised and structured future. Feel great about what you have achieved in your de-cluttering efforts and look forward with a positive mental attitude and clear mind. You have reclaimed your space – now go and enjoy it!

If you have enjoyed this article, Empowering Mums produces a quarterly newsletter, Empower, which aims to support mums on their journey towards achieving confidence, balance and joy. Please use the newsletter sign up box to the top right of this screen to subscribe to the latest issue of Empower.

Empowering Mums enables mums to live their dreams and aspirations, to become confident, balanced, fulfilled and happy women. We work by supporting and encouraging mums to take ownership of their lives, make positive changes, fulfil their potential and live their lives to the full, achieving life-long ambitions and goals in all aspects of their life. Become the woman you strive to be and live with intention, not regret! Contact Empowering Mums today on 01606 785 357 or visit www.empoweringmums.co.uk for more information.

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