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What I know:

It isn't about our stuff.
It's about our connections.

Bigger. Better. More.
Rarely is.

Our best lives create space
in our homes and hearts
for the people and activities
that make us genuinely happy.

You must be present to win.

The present of presence

Want to give gifts this year that are meaningful for both the recipient and yourself?

Give the gift of your presence.
Show up in their lives.
Spend time.
Put down your phone and pay attention to who is in front of you.
Be present in this moment, now.

Invite someone for a walk.
Plan to meet for lunch.
Visit a museum.
Take the time to connect.

Relationships give our lives meaning.
Share experiences and conversations with the people
you feel close to, or that you’d like to know better.

No fancy ribbons, bows, or wrapping paper needed.
The present of your presence isn’t more stuff in someone’s life.
It is a reflection of what has meaning and what we value.

Make merry.
Be bright.
Show up as love.

Shopping

Here’s a challenge for this week.

Don’t buy anything.
For one week: Stop shopping.

(The economy won’t collapse, you won’t starve and you won’t have to go out naked….)

And you still have plenty of time to buy experiences (not stuff)
for the people on your Christmas list.

This week, use up what’s already taking up space.
Make dinner from what’s on the shelf and in the fridge.
Wear the clothes you have.
Just because it’s on sale, doesn’t make it a bargain or a necessity.

Shopping takes time, money, and energy.
Given you have a limited amount of each-where do you really want to spend it?

When you do shop, honestly ask yourself:
Do I need this?
Will I use it?
Is this better or more useful than the one I already own?
Where will it live once I get it home?
Will having this support and enhance the life I truly want to be living?

Mindfulness when you shop will help reduce the clutter and disorganization
in your home.
Pay attention to how and where you spend your money and your time.

 

 

Value what you already have

If you value what you have you will have less desire or reason to want more.

If you think what you have isn’t enough,
what is the more you’re looking to gain?

How will bigger, better, more bring your head and heart
closer to the life you value
and the people you cherish?

Clutter  and disorganization
are in direct proportion to the lack of value
you place on what surrounds you.

Choose to value your time,
your money,
your space,
and your relationships
more than your stuff.

It’s your decision what has value in your life.
Choose wisely.

 

 

Shoulding on yourself

I should be more organized.
I should have a cleaner house.
I should exercise.
I should volunteer more.
I should spend more time with family.

Should. Should. Should. Ick.

How much stress and anxiety are all these shoulds creating in your life?

The next time an ‘I should’ thought goes through you head,
check out whose voice is really speaking.
Chances are it isn’t your own voice at all.
(Sometimes it takes practice really listening to be able to hear what your own authentic voice is saying)

Trade the shoulds for “I want to, I choose to, I get to,
it’s important to me that I…….”

If being more organized means you spend less time on the mechanics of daily life and more time doing something you love-then make the effort to declutter and organize.

Exercise because you like the way it makes you feel inside your own body, not because someone else thinks you should.

Spend more time with family and friends because you want to feel connected, not because you feel pressure or obligation.

Over the next week notice when you start shoulding and see if the action demanded resonates with what’s really important to your head and heart.

(Oh, and be careful you don’t should on anyone else)

Location, location, location

Store the things you use most frequently
where you can most easily access them.

Organize your closet,
the kitchen,
the bathroom cabinet,
the laundry area,
and the garage
so you can easily grab what you need,
use it,
and then put it away.

Eliminate reaching over,
digging through,
shuffling things around
to get things you use on a daily basis.

Do a bit of rearranging.
Make your life and daily routines easier.

A practice and a process

Living a more organized life is both a practice and a process.

The practice of daily repeatable actions:
A place for everything and everything in its place.
Don’t put it down, put it away.
Deal with the mail, everyday.
Close the circle.
One in, one out.

A process of changes where you learn:
That a simple life is an easier life.
How many, and how much is enough.
The use and value of having a home for everything.
And that your relationships matter more than your stuff.
(Especially your relationship with yourself)

Repetition builds habits.
Positive results are their own reward.

Practice may not make perfect (perfection is so overrated!),
but it will make changes.

Practice making the life you want………

Focus on what you want

I found this quote on the Tiny Buddha site,

“Turn your focus from something don’t want to something you do want. This allows you to shift your energy from complaining to taking action.”

This suggestion can apply in many areas of our lives and especially when it comes to dealing with clutter.

Stop getting caught in the endless and berating stories of
My house is such a disaster,
I’m so disorganized,
the kid’s rooms are a mess.
By focusing on:
Find my keys when I need them,
sit at the table and have dinner as a family,
have the kid’s rooms be reasonably tidy;
we begin to articulate what it is we do want.

Stop using your thoughts and energy to complain,
and start taking action.

Bemoaning your lack of organization isn’t helpful-to you or the situation.
Designating a specific place for your keys to live and
putting them there every time you come home,
is a positive action, and good use of your energy.

Setting up a place to deal with the mail,
instead of piling it on the table,
is a specific action that will leave the table clear for family dining.

Spending ten minutes before bed helping your kids put away their toys is an action that will lead to their rooms being reasonably tidy.

Choose one spot in our house that you feel is ‘cluttered’.
Focus on three things you could do,
actions you could take that would clear the space.

Small, easy actions: Toss a paper into recycle,
take something to the other room where it has a home,
throw something away. 

Focus on what you do want.
End the complaining and take some active steps.

 

Abundance or excess?

Abundance is different than excess.

Sharing in warm loving relationships is abundance.
Having subscriptions to five magazines you never read is excess.

Choosing to spend time on activities that feed your head and heart is abundance.
Holding on to equipment and supplies for hobbies that no longer interest or delight you is excess.

Choosing quality over quantity is abundance.
Purchasing duplicates of items you already own, but can’t find, is excess.

Knowing your limits creates abundance.
Ignoring your physical, financial, and emotional situation leads to excess.

Abundance lives in your heart.
Excess dominates your surroundings.

By letting go of the excess you choose abundance.

 

 

 

 

 

Time flies.

“How we spend our days is, of course, how we spend our lives.”
Annie Dillard

Decide how you want to spend those days.
Shopping?
Scurrying to catch up?
Bent over your phone?
Obsessing over the past?
Overwhelmed by your stuff?
Searching for things you own but can’t find?
Hoping things will change, but never changing your behaviors?

This is your one, true, and amazing life.
Live your life so it reflects what’s important to you.
Spend your time engaged in activities that are meaningful to you.
(You get to define what those things are)
Spend time with the people you love and cherish.

The days are long, but the years are short…

Bugs you lots

Where is that one space in your house that really bugs you?
Which pile makes you the most annoyed?
What area takes the most effort to keep under control and clutter free?

Take a moment and just look at what’s piled up there.
Do the things not have homes?
Are they items you’re doing to get right back to (but haven’t)?
Did they get left there on the way to somewhere else?
Are they decisions you’ve been unwilling to make?

Once you have an idea of the why of the clutter, 
it will be easier to take care of what’s there in an appropriate way.
Figure out if the items are worth keeping and if so, find them a home.
If they are things that never get put away, perhaps they need a new home closer to where they are used or needed.
Make a decision about the item.  
Move forward.  
Live with the results.

Trade annoyance for action.
A pile for a clean surface.

Small changes.
Big results.