Is the clutter in your life weighing you down?
When you keep less stuff, you will enjoy more life. I’m not any kind of radical minimalist. I like my stuff as much as the next guy. In fact, I’ll confess right up front that I have a lot more than what I need.
However, I can also say that I have a lot less than most people. By ridding myself of stuff that I don’t use, I’ve reduced the clutter and therefore increased my quality of life.
The stuff laying around in your life that you don’t use is nothing more than noise. It is annoying, distracting and it prevents you from enjoying the real beauty of life. You simply can’t see or appreciate this beauty when you have so much extraneous stuff clogging up your life.
Less Stuff for Greater Living
It is easy to over-value possessions in our culture. Many people are guilty of going on buying binges that tend to clutter their lives with tons of stuff to store and maintain.
Every single item you own takes away a bit of your freedom. It consumes your resources. In what ways does this happen? Well, here are a few to think about:
- Possessions obviously cost money you could have spent elsewhere.
- Possessions take up valuable space in your home.
- Possessions use up your time arranging, storing and maintaining them.
- Possessions drain you of mental energy as you figure them out and suffer buyer’s remorse.
- Possessions force you to work more than desired to afford the resulting bills.
Of course, it isn’t just material possessions that can clutter up your life. You can also have too much stuff in the form of hobbies, appointments, projects and even goals. When we are too scattered, our focus is so spread out that we rarely do our best at any of it. This seriously reduces our chances of experiencing real success and happiness.
How to Have Less Stuff and More Life
I’ve experienced all this personally. A few years ago, I realized I was overburdened with stuff that I had bought. I sold a bunch of it and although some things were hard to let go of, I really haven’t missed any of it. Once it was gone, I felt relief instead of remorse.
Here’s how I would suggest clearing the clutter from your life:
1. Start With Decluttering One Area
It is easy to get overwhelmed with the prospect of cleaning up the clutter in your life. If you’ve been collecting stuff (possessions or activities) for a long time, you may feel a bit of panic at the thought of trying to dig yourself out. That’s why I highly recommend focusing on one area at a time. For example, if you want to clear the clutter from your home, don’t think about all of it at once. This is probably too much for you to wrap your mind around. Start with one room. Get this one area cleaned up before you go on. This will give you a sense of accomplishment that will help you keep going.
2. Be a Clutter Cleaning Zealot
A zealot is someone that is fanatical and uncompromising in their pursuit. You need to go after cleaning up your clutter with zeal. The decision on what to get rid of is easy if you take the right approach. I recommend always leaning hard toward tossing things out. Cut things from your life with gusto! It might seem a bit scary in the moment, but trust me, you’ll be happy you were radical once your life is cleaned up. That stuff you have is a much bigger anchor than what you think. Lifting it and throwing it overboard takes some effort, but it sure will lighten your load. Make it your goal to get rid of so much that your family will wonder if they are next.
3. Simplify Your Schedule Too
As I’ve said, clutter is a problem that goes beyond just physical items. Examine how you spend your time. What clutters up your day and your mind? Is all that really adding value to your life? If not, then develop an exit strategy and execute on it. It is easier than you think to untangle yourself from all the complexity and multitasking you are doing. Focusing your thoughts and actions is one of the most powerful things you can do to super-charge your life. You can’t really be happy when you are spread so thin. Simplifying your schedule will give you more time, energy and clarity to get what you really want.
Embrace More Life After You Have Less Stuff
What do you want more of in life? What makes you the happiest? Clearing out the less valuable clutter will allow room for what really matters. Once you’ve simplified, then you can concentrate on living a greater life, one full of purpose and meaning. The process of decluttering will help you clarify your priorities. It will bring a lot of things into greater focus so you can really live for a change. I’ve gone through this process and I can say that it makes a world of difference. I hope you find it as beneficial as I have.
Where do you have too much clutter in your life? What is it costing you? Share your thoughts in the comments. It will help you organize your thoughts and it will help others as they read about your experience.
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