Warning: Use of undefined constant php - assumed 'php' (this will throw an Error in a future version of PHP) in /home/customer/www/lesscluttermorelife.com/public_html/wp-content/themes/FlatBook/index.php on line 25
Today I am recording an interview for “Doing What Works” with Maureen Anderson (www.MaureenAnderson.com) about Less Clutter More Life. When I mentioned to her that I believe this book was the reason I was put on this earth, she commented, “That’s probably the best teaser for a show I’ve ever heard, so thanks again!”
I’ve been thinking about that comment, and my hope is that this book will be a catalyst to encourage all the readers to answer the question, “Why was I put on this earth?” When I was first asked the question nearly three decades ago, I had no idea! Through the years, I recognized that the physical and digital clutter with which I constantly struggle was a result of not being able to answer that question. The more physical and digital clutter I eliminated, the clearer my answer became.
My purpose is to help other women discover their purpose, and as a result, to be able to share what they know and learn with others. If you’re looking for your purpose, join us in Carolina Beach for our March 2-3 retreat www.BecomeaSpecialist.com/SOAR-march-retreat.
Three days ago I created a new system for the items in my life that need handling and that I am afraid my “over 50” year old brain otherwise will forget; Today I got the first payoff! I had fashioned a clear protective pouch for my daily tote bag that holds two copies of our book just in case they are needed as I am out in meetings, and also holds the three or four crucial pieces of paper that I need to have to hand depending on where I am during the week. In the past, I have created stress for myself by worrying about whether I would remember to do a particular task, and so it occurred to me, how can I create a system that does NOT rely on my remembering in the moment, but will ensure that I will still have the item when I need it? I created the protective pouch by adding sturdy electrical tape to close the long edge of a 8.5×11 plastic sheet protector. I had put the smog renewal in the pocket. I was afraid that even though I would take my car in for the repair I would forget about asking them to do the smog test. I did not remember to ask them, as I had expected, but when it came to my new habit of putting the important papers in the same pouch, I was delighted to discover the smog paper! Yes, I exclaimed to all there, the system worked!
I just spoke with a woman who read Less Clutter More Life – her comment was one I have heard hundreds of times: “Letting go of the clutter makes me feel so much lighter!”
When I first began helping people let go of their clutter, I used to wake up in the middle of the night with fear that someone would be sorry about what we had done the previous day. In 37 years, it has never happened!
Speaking of getting rid of clutter, LeadHer.org on which I serve as a board member is collecting gently used handbags as their annual fundraiser through the end of February. If you have some you don’t use, why not pack them up and ship them to:
PO Box 8884
Springfield, MO 65801
You’ll give yourself a Valentine treat and bless someone else at the same time!
P.S. The book would make a great Valentine gift for someone else too!
Pace yourself. I have set every Thursday to be the day to clear the next portion. When it has taken a while to pile up, it takes a little while to work through and release. But ah, l am so enjoying the peace and clarity of the left side of my desk and the beautiful colors revealed in its place – the right side of my desk is waiting for next thursday. Check back then:)
I was recommended to a physical therapist. She is from India where I lived. When she asked what I did and I told her, she said “We need you.” I gave her a copy of Less Clutter More Life. She walked out to her assistant and said, “This woman is going to help us with our paper.” Her assistant used to live in Grenada, West Indies — where I also lived. Today when I went back, I discovered my physical therapist received her training in Postural Restoration in Lincoln, NE — 100 miles from where I grew up. Puzzle…
Often people think that “being organized” means being a minimalist — not true! This week I had breakfast with a colleague at Cracker Barrel. While you could say it is a “cluttered” environment, everything in it supports who Cracker Barrel is as a company — good quality, family friendly, and great memories! “Clutter free” means eliminating those items/ideas that do not help you accomplish your work or enjoy your life. On a scale of 1-10, how does your home/office rate?
Thank you Rae, darling daughter, who helped me have the energy to face my closet. Plunged in. Grabbed gobs of hangers and put them on the Bed. Now at least there was a little room to maneuver. Decided to prune out my closet. Had to start by being brutal. Now down to business. Make it Easy. Haven’t worn it in a year? Toss! New policy. Re-gift, donate or just throw it away. Who would want to wear THAT? Enjoy the clear view. Clear the blockage. Wow it feels good. A new energy. Rebirthing my true me.
I’ve always liked the idea of creating a “one word theme” for a new year. I haven’t always done it, and probably more times than not, even when I did, I forgot what it was! Such was the case in 2014. We were having a “Productive Environment Party” in our office last week, and I came across a note I had written on Jan 1, 2014 calendar: “Discipline: clutter book.” What an illustration of the power of intention, because if you’re reading this blog, you know about my new book Less Clutter More Life. Wow, does that make my heart sing, since the purpose of my company Productive Environment Institute is to help people create an intentional setting in which they can accomplish their work and enjoy your lives.
Needless to say, that experience inspired me to give serious thought to my word for 2015, so I asked myself the question I always ask my clients: “What ONE thing has to happen in the next year for you to be happy with your progress?” The answer came quickly because it’s a question with which I have grappled for as long as I can remember, and at one point nearly took my own life because I didn’t have the answer. “I want to KNOW that I hear from God.” So I began thinking about words that would move me in that direction. My first thought was “faith,” but it didn’t really resonate. Then yesterday morning, I woke up with an old hymn I learned as a child, “Trust and Obey.” So my word for 2015 is “Trust.” How does that apply to the question. My goal for 2015 is to trust that God is speaking to me, and to trust myself that I am hearing — and then to act on what I hear. What’s your “one word?” How are you going to live it out in 2015?
I just read that “How do I declutter?” is ranked #7 in all of Google’s “How do I..” searches for 2014. I have no idea if that statistic is accurate (I’m always skeptical of statistics!), but I do know that all of us — including me — would have more productive lives if we eliminated physical, digital, emotional or spiritual clutter. I also know that my business for over three decades has been built on teaching what I want — or need — to learn. I’ve become quite skilled at eliminating physical, digital, and spiritual clutter, but the clutter that most often holds me back is emotional. Andrea Anderson, my business partner often calls me on it — and she’s right. Emotional clutter are those negative messages in my brain that say, “I should have done this a long time ago,” “I’m too old to do this,” “I’m not smart enough to do this,” “I don’t deserve this,” etc., etc. etc. What about you? What clutter is holding you back?
As Charles Dickens expressed it so well, Christmas is “the best of times and the worst of times.” It is certainly a time to apply the clutter-eliminating principle of asking “Does this (item or thought) help me accomplish my work or enjoy my life?” Yesterday, my assistant Amanda and I spent the afternoon clearing out the clutter out of my office — it felt SO good. Earlier this week, I was sitting in my counsellor’s office talking about some family issues with which I have been struggling. I made the comment that I felt like a “fraud” having written a book about eliminating emotional clutter, when I was struggling with my own. She asked me a question: “When you clear up the physical clutter, does it stay gone?” And so it is with “emotional clutter.” She reminded me that there are three ways to distance yourself from people with whom you don’t get along: 1) in anger, 2) in indifference, or 3) in love. May we all find the love we need to make this Christmas Season a time of blessing for everyone — just as Jesus loves us!