Its Time To Clear Out! Clutter Busting For Every Aspect Of Your Life

'A well-ordered life is like climbing a tower; the view halfway up is better than the view from the base, and it steadily becomes finer as the horizon expands.' --William Lyon Phelps (1895 - 1985) English novelist, poet, writer

We've seen some sunshine and light is beginning to stream through the windows. Somehow, the cosiness of a room in winter takes on a different slant once the light of day falls on to it. Where the piles of papers in the colder months look as though they are about to be studied and sorted; now it just looks a mess. Items stuffed under cushions or chairs are beginning to peep out accusingly at us with a 'well, what are you going to do with me then?' Climbing over hoarded items becomes irritating. It is time for a clear out.

So where to start? Unless you are extremely disciplined about keeping things tidy, and have control over the habits of every member of your household, then there is likely to be a lot to do. But don't despair! It doesn't have to be tackled in one go. In fact, that approach, although effective for some, can cause others to refuse to begin! The best idea is to take a good hard look around your space, at home or at work, and identify which areas need to be tackled. List them, and decide which one would make the most difference to you if it was organized. Once you have made that decision, you need to ensure that you have enough time to actually do this. Allocate it in your diary. In each area break each job into smaller chunks. For example, in a bedroom there's the wardrobe, drawers, discarded clothes perhaps, piles of papers on the floor and possibly boxes of items that haven't seen the light of day for a long time.

Once you have decided where to begin, you need to think about what you are going to do with everything. What you will do with each item you touch ? keep, give away to friends or charity, sell or put in the rubbish? How much do you actually use the item? Be ruthless. Have rubbish bags to put things into straight away, and separate boxes for the selling and donating items. Deal with these as soon as possible. Have a good clean as you go along. When you put the things you really want back in place, your mood will be lifted by the order you are creating! Even if you can only do 15 minutes of sorting a day, it will soon build up and you will see a difference very quickly. One thing I do in my kitchen, which is where all the paperwork that comes through the post seems to end up, is to deal with at least 10 pieces of paper each time I am in there to make a meal. I usually find I do more than that, and leaflets etc which I held on to 'just in case', usually end up in the recycling. Keep scheduling time in your diary until you have tackled all the areas of irritation. Give yourself a reward each time you have finished each area on your list.

As well as decluttering and clearing out our physical spaces, it is the perfect time of the year to start thinking about our minds and bodies. Our bodies particularly, need a good clear out. Thinking about what we eat and drink, even following a detox programme, is one way we can clear the clutter from our bodies. Our minds can get cluttered too. With information bombarding us from almost every direction, our heads are filled with the important, trivial and downright nonsensical! How can we sort out which is which? Attempt to create more space in your mind for the information that you need by letting go of the nonsense and trivia. We are sometimes guilty of holding on to negative thoughts ? of anger, hatred, jealousy and self-doubt. Do you really need to hang on to these? Let them go. Is your mind full of everything that needs to be done? Is it overwhelming you? It's time to take a good hard look at that to-do list and eliminate what you can, learn to say 'no' and keep those spaces in your brain for what really matters to you. If it's information you are storing up there, help yourself to have a clear-out by writing it down, or putting the information onto a computer file. Does it really need to be in your head? Look at your life. Where can you simplify things? Where can you prioritize and streamline? Cut down on your activities if they are causing you stress.

Once you've done this once, don't let it get out of control again. Get a system in place. Enjoy your surroundings and feel satisfied at what you have achieved ? the evidence will be within and around you.

Kate Harper is based in the beautiful Highlands of Scotland. Check out her website http://www.harpercoaching.com

She works with people who are fed up with moaning about their lives and have decided to do something about it. If that is you, please see Kate's website. She is happy to work with people from any part of the world.

"The distance is nothing; it is only the first step that is difficult." Madame Marie du Deffand

Take your first step today and contact Kate.

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