Do you ever get into those moods where you just can't stand to look at clutter anymore and start filling garbage bags? Maybe it's Spring Fever, but I have a deep desire for simplicity lately. Not just in my physical surroundings, but emotionally, professionally, and spiritually too -- I have been "purging" the unnecessary from my life.
This is a difficult process, because while certain things are no longer serving me, they did at one time. There is a bit of nostalgia attached to these things. It's like saying a permanent goodbye to old friends. Many of us tend to cling to the familiar, even if we don't enjoy it or benefit from it anymore. We get stuck in rut after rut, afraid to let go of what we have, because even though it's not great, at least it's ours.
However, the problem arises when we pray for better circumstances, but we don't make room for them. It's like asking the universe to fill our glass with sweet lemonade when it's already crammed full of sour lemons. We need to remove the lemons, wash out the glass, and then specify exactly what we want that glass to be filled with. We've all heard the phrase, "nature abhors a vacuum." This works on a spiritual and emotional level too. When you eliminate the clutter from your surroundings (inner and outer), the universe will rush to fill that space. Fill it with what, you ask? That all depends on your intent.
What do you want to create in your life? Give some thought to these areas:
Emotional -- are you clinging to relationships and situations that no longer serve you? Are you feeling burdened by "baggage" from your past? Are you holding grudges against those who have wronged you? Are you stuck in negative, self-destructive behaviors?Financial -- what does your budget look like? Are you struggling to pay your bills each month? Do your monthly expenses usually exceed your income? Do you have a lot of unnecessary expenses for things you could easily live without?Spiritual -- are you held back by childhood conditioning, or letting others define your spiritual beliefs? Have your spiritual practices become nothing more than the act of reciting a few words by rote once a week? Do you feel an inner emptiness, sadness or hopelessness?
You have it in your power to change anything you don't like. Keep in mind it is a process though, you won't change all of it overnight. Make a list of the items from above. Write down anything in your daily existence that is no longer bringing you joy -- and eliminate it. Ouch. I know that's a hard thing to consider doing. Even though these things no longer serve us, we still feel fearful about releasing them. Work slowly if you have to. One baby step at a time!
- Physical -- are your surroundings cluttered with books you've read (or intend to read), papers that need to be filed or disposed of, clothing that no longer fits you (or suits your taste), and items you don't know what to do with? Do you find yourself involved in activities that have become a burden? What about your job? Are you fulfilled by your daily professional activities? At the end of the day, do you feel a sense of satisfaction or boredom?
Start with the physical clutter first, as that is one of the easiest problems to remedy, and one that often causes us to feel confused and stagnated. Go through your house one room at a time and be ruthless in your cleaning. Toss out anything you don't need, and neatly file away things you must keep. Be honest with yourself. If you haven't used something in the past year, what are the chances you'll need it again in the near future?
Once your physical surroundings are cleared, you'll probably find yourself feeling inspired and able to tackle the larger (and more difficult) emotional, financial and spiritual clutter. This is also a process, so be patient with yourself. Take your time, but be just as ruthless as you were with the physical clutter. If it's no longer serving you, say a tearful goodbye and pitch it.
What do you want to replace these things with? It's crucial to be absolutely clear about that before you begin this process. Otherwise you might end up with different, yet still unfavorable, circumstances. Think about the categories above, and ask yourself what you really want to create there. Write it down, and read it to yourself every day. State it aloud to the universe. Ask for it. Affirm it. Welcome it.
Will these new circumstances fall into your lap, fully formed? Some may, yes. Some might require a little elbow grease from you, and that's okay! Just keep working toward what you want. The process is quite enjoyable once you release your fear and immerse yourself in the experience.
Think of it as a sacrificial process. Decide what you really want, and then ask yourself what you're willing to give up to get it. Don't let fear hold you back. Know that what you release will be replaced with something much, much better.
Wendy Betterini is a freelance writer and web designer who strives to motivate, uplift, and inspire you to make your dreams a reality. Visit her website, http://www.WingsForTheHeart.com for more positive thoughts to help you on your journey.