Oh, what a year 2020 has turned out to be. It’s definitely not what anyone was anticipating. One sure thing to come out of this is with so many of us staying home, it has become the precise time to declutter our homes. Trust me. I am the queen of decluttering. I usually go through my entire house every six months.
My daughter knows precisely when the time comes because I start asking her, do you still want this? That’s her clue that mamas on the verge of getting rid of things. Now I have been doing this her whole life, so she’s pretty good at tossing stuff. Sometimes too good, as I will still keep something she no longer wants, knowing that she will be mad at me for having thrown it away when she gets older.
My mother and I moved practically every year from the time I was born to around the age of 16. Having lived that way, many of my childhood memories got lost with the moves. So I have an idea of what she will still want later on in life as memories. I figure if I am wrong, she can toss it later, but it won’t be hanging over my head.
Now I am not saying keep all of your kid’s childhood memories because that would be insane, especially if you have more than one child. Having spent a good chunk of my life organizing, not just myself but also other people, it’s second nature to me. I’ve become aware of what people should keep and learn to let go. But that is an entirely different article as I could probably fill an entire magazine up with how to declutter your entire home and how to let things go.
I am writing this article because with the minimalist movement and Marie Kondo suggesting to get rid of everything that doesn’t spark joy, I still come across people that are not finding happiness. There is a reason for that. You can get rid of all the physical things that don’t bring you joy, but you will never be free of clutter until you learn how to clear your mindset. Clutter in your mind is far worse than any chaos in your home. I am not saying that you should not organize your surroundings, as I am a big believer that it helps shift the energy and is a starting point to creating change in your life.
Remember, when it comes to clearing your space or living a minimalist life, it isn’t just about owning fewer things. Instead, it’s about your way of life and intentional thinking. You must ask yourself, what do I value most in my life. Marie Kondo has it right when she says you should only keep the things you love. Still, it goes further than just items. It should also include your mindset and the circle you keep since the latter two can be detrimental to your well being.
A healthy mindset is such an important topic for me that I thought I would share some ideas on what you can do to start clearing your mind. As I share, consider taking a note pad and writing any of them down that relate to you or maybe someone you know.
First on my list is journaling. There’s something freeing about taking pen to paper and writing every single thought that comes to mind. It’s a brain dump and a form of release for you to express yourself without any judgment. No one has to see this, and realistically no one should. Also, many times you will surprise yourself on what you’ve written and sometimes find answers you’ve been searching for. I love writing in quality made journals and Spirit of Flight Journal and Bordeaux Journal are two of my favorites. I’m always looking for a good journal so if you have any suggestions, please let me know in the comments.
Stop using the word “can’t.” Words hold power. By saying you can’t do something, you already doubt yourself and lack self-confidence. It would be best if you started telling yourself that you can and do it the best way you know. If using the word “can” is too difficult for you, try using “maybe” or “what if.” Just by modifying it, you shift your mindset to think it’s possible. And the truth is, anything is possible, especially in times of uncertainty. If there was ever a time to believe in yourself, it is now.
Forgive and release. Practice this daily, and it will soon become second nature to you. The following is the best quote in understanding the importance of it.“Holding onto anger is like drinking poison and expecting the other person to die.” – Unknown
Leave the past in the past. Do not look back as you cannot go there and change anything. Everything terrible that happened in your past is a lesson learned. It happened for a reason, and it is not to keep reliving or beating yourself up over it. It served a purpose, and now that time has come and left. Isn’t it time you left it in the past too?
Learn to balance work and play and give yourself time to rest and heal. I cannot stress this enough. Working too much may help you get further in your career but know there is a price to pay. Be aware of it, especially if you notice certain things in your life suffering, whether it’s a relationship or your health.
Mind your own business. There is nothing worse than getting caught up in other people’s drama because it leads to more of it and can have a trickle effect on your own life. Try to stay clear of it. If this task seems too impossible, because it’s a family member, make sure you are not adding fuel to the mix. Someone else’s mindset may not be in your control, but what’s going on in yours is. When you learn to master your mindset, it makes it much easier to deal with any situation that arises.
If there is one thing I know for sure, it is that gratitude is the key to happiness. Be happy now, with what you have period. Whether it is a little or a lot, you must be grateful. The more grateful you are, the more open your mind will become. Anyone who practices real gratitude, daily, quickly learns that the more you are thankful for, the more the universe gives you. I am talking about the ‘good stuff,’ the happy moments.
Last but not least, fear is the number one killer for clearing your mindset. Why didn’t I write that one first? It’s the hardest for people to overcome. Anxiety from change or loss does two things; it makes you worry and lose sleep. The good news, it’s not impossible to get rid of. If you practice the previous stuff I listed, fear should gradually start to disappear on its own. Because it isn’t something you do one day by saying, “I am no longer going to be afraid.” But when you work on getting rid of it, fear does start to feel uncomfortable and has a hard time staying when your mindset is open. That is what I want to happen to you. I want your mind so clear that it automatically recognizes fear creeping in. Once you realize it, your mind will go into overdrive and kick it out, because it understands it no longer has room for it and serves no one but the ego-mind. Remember, your focus is where your power goes, and while minimalism may not be one size fits all, clearing your mindset is.