(ENG only) Last week I have completed my advanced creative writing class.
I am proud of myself for being able to stick to this commitment. But more importantly I am proud of myself for facing my fears and pushing through them. Which led me to making clear improvements. In my writing and, possibly, as a person. Even my teacher said it, more than once. And on the last day he told me “well done, you got it”.
I am trying to make space for new things. To make space for myself. To make space for what is essential and functional, first and foremost, for me.
Because a) I can’t pour from an empty cup. I want to fill my cup with things that serve me well. And b) I don’t need that much to be happy. But still, my cup has a limited space, so I want to select well the things I fill up my cup with.
In a fast paced world, it’s easy to fall into the trap of cluttering up our existence with un-essentials.
How to: spring clean your life
Wether we’re talking about cleaning up a wardrobe, a bookshelf or a way too busy schedule, the steps that we can follow in order to achieve more clarity and lightness are pretty much the same, in my opinion.
declutter before cleaning and organizing
There really isn’t a point to organize things that are too many, that are non essentials, that are messy and don’t serve us well.
take everything out
Unless you assess exactly how much stuff (material or emotional) you’re dealing with, there is no way you’ll be able to tell what you can (and should) keep and what doesn’t serve you. Take everything out of its storage (clothes, books, kitchen supplies etc. , in case of thoughts or to-dos write them all down — check out my blog post on brain dumps here). Having everything in front of your eyes will help you on the next step.
Take your time. Don’t rush this. Consider every single thing in front of you and notice how it makes you feel. If it isn’t a sure “yes”, then it’s a no. Try to understand what about that thing doesn’t make you feel comfortable or good. If you’re in doubt about something, give yourself some time to think about it. But put it on the side, don’t throw it back into the “I’m keeping this” pile, otherwise you’ll go back to square 1. If after that said amount of time you’re still unsure or haven’t changed your mind to a sure “yes”, then it’s time to let that thing go. Maybe you’ll even notice that that thing you were holding on to, didn’t even occur to you to use it or think about it.
clean it out
give everything a good clean before putting everything back in it. Scrub it, wash it, wipe it, delete it, refresh it. The stuff that you keep deserve a clean, fresh start. You deserve a clean, fresh start.
organize it and (try to) keep it tidy
the things you are left with should now have enough space to breathe and be. You should have enough space to breathe and be. When you have less to deal with, it’s easier to maintain tidiness in your space and life. But there are also a few tricks you can use in order to achieve this.
Everyday minimalist hacks to stay organized clutter free
- buy less: having a less cluttered, less stuffed space is just one of the benefits of living more minimally and simply.
- a place for everything and everything in its place: put something back where it belongs right after using it instead of leaving it in random places around the house.
- 1 in – 1 out rule: to make space for something new, get rid of something you don’t need anymore first.
- one minute rule: if it takes you one minute or less to do it, do it right away, so you won’t have to deal with it later.
- brain dumps: it helps maintain mental clarity and a clear understanding of our thoughts, feelings and to-dos.
- daily 10 minutes tidy up sessions: whatever tidying up means to you and however you do it, it doesn’t matter. But those 10 minutes invested today are going to save you tons of time and give you much more clarity and less scatter tomorrow.
- leave surfaces as clear as possible: try to think your surfaces as areas where as little as possible should be collected. Remember that clutter attracts clutter and what looks like an innocent receipt, pen or grocery list, can become a huge pile of mess in just a few days.
I hope this post will inspire you to make space for the things that serve you well, this spring or whenever you feel like doing it. Do it at your own pace, not someone else’s.
Take care, I’ll talk to you soon!