Are you finding yourself becoming dissatisfied with the way your house looks? Are you getting increasingly exasperated with the clutter of your email folders? Are your thinking about reorganising the chaos of your financial paperwork?
It's likely you are, because at this time of year we naturally feel the need to clear and clean and declutter, in preparation of the fresh new energy of Spring.
Have you noticed how, having a good clear out gives you energy and makes you feel great. And it's not just the physical clutter you're clearing, it's mental and emotional clutter too.
Are you holding onto a load of "stuff" because you think it might just come in useful some time, or because you just haven't noticed it was there, or maybe you can't be bothered sorting it out? All that physical clutter, also represents mental and emotional clutter, which can slow you down, cause you to lose focus on what's important and create a subtle constant low level stress in your life.
Spring cleaning and decluttering is about taking control of your life and your environment. All those choices about what should go and what should stay will tell you a lot about yourself:
* What's important to you
If you're hanging on to a load of stuff from the distant past, it may reflect a sentimental nature. Holding on too tightly to the past leaves less room for enjoying NOW and planning for the future. And it can be difficult to let go of all those trophies, or special cards, or childhood toys because they're so full of meaning. But really it's the memory that's important, rather than the physical item, so why not take a photo and then you can let the physical item go, but still have a photo to remind you of the memory. Try it out with some of your less challenging clutter and then move up to the big stuff.
* How easy you find it to let go
If you're having difficulty letting go of the physical stuff, just imagine how difficult it is to let go of the emotional stuff. And holding on to emotional stuff is not good for your health - mental or physical. So think of the physical decluttering process as good practice for the mental and physical decluttering that we all need to do from time to time. And you may even find that the physical decluttering leaves you feeling mentally and emotionally lighter! And if letting go of emotions from the past is a real problem for you, you might want to consider a session of Timeline Therapy.
* How optimistic you are
The ability to let go, suggests an optimistic anticipation that there will be more in the future, that life is abundant and that by creating space, new (and better) things will fill the gap. Not letting go, suggests the opposite - a fear that if you let something go, it will be gone for ever and nothing or something worse will take it's place. If you have trouble letting go, have a think about why that should be - are you fearful that it will be lost to you forever? Is the future a place of fear, while the past is at least familiar? Well, what about now? Do you want to fill your present with a load of stuff from the past.
If you're in the mood for some Spring cleaning, go to it. Enjoy that feeling of letting go of the old to make room for the new. You may even find it improves your sense of well-being, improves your confidence, reduces your stress levels and helps you to sleep easy at night.
Here are 7 top tips to make your spring cleaning easier:
1. Do one room at a time.
2. Get 4 boxes, marked: Bin, Give Away/Sell, Store, Put Away. Organise your things within those 4 categories.
3. Sell as much as you can - it makes it much easier to get rid of, if there's a cash incentive.
4. Have a place for everything.
5. Pay someone to do - there are plenty of companies who will do a deep clean as a one off contract. And if you've just decluttered you deserve it - you might even be able to afford from the profits of all that stuff you sold!
6. Get started and keep going until it's done. You don't have to do it all at once, even half an hour a day will make a big difference, if you keep at it.
7. Incentivise yourself. Plan a treat for yourself after you've completed each room - maybe a relaxing Reflexology or Indian Head Massage session!
Good luck! It can be a lot of effort, but worth it in the end.