Decluttering and organizing your surroundings can be life-altering - lifting the weight of the possessions, papers, digital clutter and commitments that burden you can open your space and mind to opportunities that were previously obscured. This month I offer a few simple tips to help you start to experience the peacefulness that comes with decluttering some key areas of your life. Keep in mind that organizing for the long term involves more than just clearing the clutter, but experiencing some quick victories will most likely motivate you to dig in deeper and create a lifetime of benefits.
Possessions: Answer these questions about each item or category of items to decide whether or not to hold onto them:
· When did I use this last?
· Am I likely to use it again?
· Why don't I use it more often?
· Do I love it?
· What would happen if I got rid of it?
· Does this enhance my life?
Papers: For each paper (sorry but yes, you do have to look at each one - you wouldn't want to toss the birth certificate that got mixed in with the grocery store ad, right?), ask if it's a WASTE:
Is it Worthwhile?
Will I use it Again?
Can I find it Somewhere else?
Will anything happen if I Toss it?
Do I need the Entire document or magazine?
Digital Information: Declutter your digital life the same way as your physical life - make a decision about each item to determine whether or not you need it. Store similar information (you get to decide what that means to you) together. For email, unsubscribe from newsletters (except this one!), blogs, social media feeds, ads, etc. that aren't essential or don't enhance your life.
Commitments: Decluttering your commitments means saying "no" to demands on your time that aren't essential or beneficial. Evaluate your appointments and other obligations against your goals and note which aren't in alignment with who you are, who you want to be, or where you want to go in life. Create a plan to eliminate or minimize those commitments - make a call, send an email, find your replacement, resign at the end of your current term, find a way to do it more efficiently, etc. Don't just go with the flow - take charge and eliminate what's getting in the way of you living your best life.
Although creating and implementing a plan to get and stay organized is more involved than simply decluttering, I hope the ideas noted here will help you see that there is a path to a simpler, less burdensome life. I wish you success on your journey.