When we clear the physical clutter from our lives we literally make way for inspiration and ‘good, orderly direction’ to enter.
We are into the last – and my favourite – quarter of the year. October is not only my birthday month, but the beginning of the race towards Christmas and a new decade. I love the sense of celebration and anticipation this season brings.
In a live video that I posted in my Rocking Midlife group last week, I talked about how Autumn and Spring are my two favourite seasons and how I take inspiration at these times of year to really address the clutter and “stuff” that has accumulated in my home. I’ve been on a mission decluttering madly over the past few weeks, whilst simultaneously finishing my book 21 Hacks to ROCK your Life! and I am SO excited to say that not only do I have a far less overwhelming home to live in, but my book is complete and will be released in November!
I tend to write about things I have experienced or are experiencing, so as I decluttered, I wrote Hack #4, titled “Clear the Clutter!” Please enjoy a segment from that hack so that you can be encouraged to also reduce your sense of overwhelm by reducing your “stuff.”
Hack #4 Clear the Clutter!
Have you ever wondered just why you have so many socks, when you are scrambling around in hurry
to leave the house but can’t find a matching pair? Or scratched your head in bewilderment over the clutter that has accumulated overnight on your office desk? It’s times like these that one finds themselves seriously considering becoming a minimalist.
Minimalism is on trend at the moment, with minimalist rock stars such as Marie Kondo becoming household
names. There is much to be said about the positive effects of this movement, as clutter is often a physical representation of the state of a person’s mind. Too much mental or physical clutter can lead to procrastination, depression and low productivity.
In his book Learning and Leading with Habits of Mind, Arthur L.Costa discusses how the brain absorbs informa-
tion through all of the senses, not just visually and aurally. We tend to forget that our senses of smell, taste and touch are also information pathways to the brain. This ability to gather information in so many differing ways is an incredible gift, however can potentially be problematic too as we also have a variety of sources for potential distraction and reduced productivity.
Who knows a teenager whose bedroom resembles a bomb site? You may even have been this teenager in days gone by (sorry Mom!) Their wardrobe has exploded over the floor, amongst which are buried schoolbooks, shoes, chocolate wrappers, bags and last week’s homework. This same teen is the one who can never remember anything and has a meltdown when they can’t find their favourite top to wear to a party on the weekend. Clutter is time-consuming, distracting, overwhelming, embarrassing, frustrating and productivity-destroying. A cluttered environment and mind is not going to support someone who aspires to live a rocking, on-purpose life!
So what does your present-day workplace look like? Is it overflowing with post-it notes, pens and broken pencils, correspondence, planners, photos, paper clips and other stationary items, ornaments, photos, phones, iPads, laptops and associated chargers and accessories?
How’s that working for you?
The minute you pause from the task that you are immersed in, you run the risk of sensory overload in a
cluttered workspace. Each one of your senses will be bombarded by information from your cluttered envi-
ronment and your chances of remaining focussed and productive will dramatically decrease.
How about your computer? Does it have a dozen tabs open and a desktop full of items that should be deleted
What does your smartphone look like? Are there pages and pages of apps that could be grouped into files so that you don’t need to keep swiping away having to search every time that you want a particular app?
While we are at it, how is the rest of your home? Do you have a pantry full of out-of-date food and overflowing
with plastic containers? Do you have drawers stuffed full of paperwork needing sorting? Is your linen cupboard set to explode with bedding that you don’t no longer need?
Every one of these scenarios will contribute to a sensory overload that can negatively affect your focus and productivity. Even though you might work from a perfectly ordered office, coming home to a cluttered home is still going to raise your stress levels and hurt your productivity.
Decide today to start reducing your “stuff” so that you can reduce the amount of overwhelm you are experiencing.
- Want a kickstart to getting the clutter out of your life? Grab my FREE ebook 10 Hacks to Simplify your Life HERE!
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