Secrets to Eliminating Emotional Clutter

Are you plagued by clutter in your personal or professional life? Is there someone in your family or your work who is? Based on my experience, the answer is probably "Yes!"

As a professional organizing consultant for more than 20 years, I have discovered that eight out of ten people are bogged down in life with physical clutter somewhere in their lives. Ironically, most of them suffer in silence. In many cases, you would never know it just by seeing them, or even working with them, because they are frequently some of the smartest and most successful people in the world. In far more cases than most people believe, the clutter actually drives them to do or not to do the very things they want most or want not to do. In some cases, it causes emotional paralysis, even mental illness. The only thing stronger that their desire to get of the clutter is their desire to hang on to it, and a vicious cycle results.

My consulting business has been built on the concept "Clutter is Postponed Decisions®." In the beginning, I was referring to the physical clutter that plagues so many people in our increasingly materialist society. When I began to explore this issue, it became evident that the physical clutter was an outgrowth of another kind of clutter: emotional clutter ? internal beliefs that control our behavior and our results.

If I just get organized, I will be able to do it all. I, or someone else I know, might need it someday If I keep it long enough, I can justify the fact that I bought it. I can't get rid of it because someone else gave it to me.

You can keep everything you want if you are willing to pay the price: time, space, money, and energy.

It suddenly occurred to me that decision-making about our emotional environment is just as important as decision-making about our physical environment. Deciding what thoughts to keep determine whether we just "keep on keeping on" or learn from our experiences, move on to even better things, and help others to learn by our example.

I once interviewed an extremely talented and prolific painter in her home studio. It was filled with beautiful paintings. "Do you ever like something you create so much that you can't let go of it," I asked. "On, no," she immediately responded. "I have to. Otherwise nothing new would come."

© Barbara Hemphill is the author of Kiplinger's Taming the Paper Tiger at Work and Taming the Paper Tiger at Home and co-author of Love It or Lose It: Living Clutter-Free Forever. The mission of Hemphill Productivity Institute is to help individuals and organizations create and sustain a productive environment so they can accomplish their work and enjoy their lives. We do this by organizing space, information, and time. We can be reached at 800-427-0237 or at www.ProductiveEnvironment.com

In The News:

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Column: I will not stain the deck. I will not check Twitter. I will not organize the board games: A vacation m  Chicago TribuneI'm taking two weeks off work and I need a mission statement to keep me from wasting it on well-intention, long-overdue house projects.
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Sioux Falls PD Credit Pride Organizers for Keeping Peace During Protests  KDLT NewsPolice are crediting Sioux Falls Pride organizers for keeping the peace during the weekend's celebrations.
JKUC to organize seminar at KU's Ibn-e-Khalood auditorium on Jun 20  Kashmir News ServiceSrinagar, Jun 18 (KNS): Jammu Kashmir Urdu Council (JKUC) is going to organize a day-long seminar on June 20, 2019 (Thursday) at Kashmir University's ...
HERH students organizing HEART Society fundraiser  Enfield Weekly PressMILFORD: Six Grade 9 Citizenship students at Hants East Rural High are giving back to the community. The students are organizing a benefit for Hants East ...
Concerts on the Riverwalk 2019 kicks off with new organizers  StarjournalnowFor the Star Journal. For 36 years, music lovers in Rhinelander have had Jan Leschke to thank for bringing them wonderful free live music each summer.
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Organizers Say Tbilisi Pride Won't be Canceled  Georgia TodayToday, the organizers of Tbilisi Pride released a statement announcing their decision on holding the events scheduled for June 18-23. According to them ...
Organizers prepare for annual international film festival in Butte  NBC MontanaOrganizers are putting the final touches on the Covellite International Film Festival, which kicks off Wednesday in Butte. The films will be shown at several ...
Women Organizing for Wilmington holds #MeToo support group for parents of New Hanover Co. students  WECTLynn Shoemaker, who founded WoW, says the group provides a safe space for parents to share stories, look for resolution and bond about their experiences.
Bosses Can Boot Union Organizers From the Cafeteria, With Limits  Bloomberg LawA recent National Labor Relations Board ruling allowing businesses to ban outside union organizers from public areas of an employer's private property doesn't ...
Organizers: 'Leap a Little' at the 2019 Fringe  WXXI NewsProducers of the annual KeyBank Rochester Fringe Festival are inviting people to "take a leap," at one of the premier fringe festivals in the country and.

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