02 June 2009

Decluttering Catharsis

There's always something deeply cleansing to my mind and spirit when I declutter something in my life. Today I spent a bit of time clearing out my closet and getting rid of some old clothes and that were worn out, I didn't need, and that I knew I wouldn't wear any more. It was a small job and did not take much time at all. But it made my closet less full and easier to get to my clothes.

Now, I am not a clutterer (is that a word?). I purge stuff quite often and like things neat. I'm not anal-retentive where things have to be perfect, but I do like order. I know people who have accumulated a lot of "stuff" over the years and cannot really tell you why they still have it, but are extremely reluctant to get rid of it.

I'm not like that, but I do have some things that I keep that I don't need to keep, but have a sentimental or emotional connection. Things like the 2006 Sport Illustrated showing the Cardinals winning the World Series, the "picture" my oldest daughters drew for me when she was three, ticket stubs to a Grateful Dead show, etc. I see these things as important. Someone who purges everything risks their life becoming sterile. But more about that in a future post. I have these mementos and things in a plastic drawer in my closet. This is the neat part of me.

Going back to the "stuff". I have known people that reached the point that they need to get rid of it. It's like the show Clean House. When they're done, there is a sense of calm and peacefulness that comes over them. Like the clutter was a weight that was on their shoulders. That is how it feels when I declutter.

If you feel stressed or overwhelmed, part of the cause may be the stuff around you. Clear some space and get rid of things you don't need. You may find the same mental relief that I feel.

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