Piles of paper on the counter, overflowing closets and mountains of dirty laundry can be overwhelming, but if you look at them through a fresh perspective, they also can be reminders of the abundance of blessings you have in your life.
For example, those papers may be work-related, which means you can feel grateful to have a job. Those closets full of odds and ends mean you have had money available for life’s extras. Those loads of laundry waiting to be done might belong to your children, which means you have been blessed with family in your life.
Here’s how to take control of the clutter around you while honoring the blessings you have been given in life.
Sort Your Treasures
The first step is to sort all your items into categories. For instance, crafting items may go in one pile, photos in another and assorted décor in a third. Once you have your possessions categorized, it’s time to separate the treasure from the excess.
Treasures may come in different forms. A treasure may be something you use every day, such as your favorite sauce pan, or it may be a cherished heirloom, such as a clock handed down from your great grandparents. These are the things that warm your heart and bring a smile to your face, helping you feel connected to the important things in your life.
On the surface, this sounds easy, but this can be an emotional task. Be prepared to ask yourself tough questions about what really is important—and to answer honestly. Remember, the goal is to free yourself from the items that have become clutter and that hold you back.
Pay Your Respects
Though it may sound odd, take the time to pay your respects to the things that no longer give you joy. After all, there’s a good chance that potholder or vase was useful to you at one point. Acknowledge this with gratitude, and then prepare to let go.
It is normal to become attached to inanimate objects – especially when the items have been central to an important stage of your life, such as going through college or raising your children. And you need to keep your most treasured items because they help you capture your most precious memories. The key, however, is to limit what you save to what you truly treasure and release everything else.
A great strategy for deciding how many things you can keep is to set physical boundaries to contain each type of item. Establish the “container” for your books on a bookshelf. Once you’ve filled this space, you need to follow the “one in/one out” rule. If you want to bring in a new book, you must find a book to give away. This strategy will work well in getting organized and staying organized.
Pass the Blessing Along
If you are struggling with saying “goodbye” to your things, consider other people who will benefit by having what you no longer need or treasure. Regardless if you donate or sell your items, you will help the recipients of your things. You’ll be a great example of generosity to your family and be “green” in the process by giving your things a new life.