Now that I’ve embraced the clutter-free, minimalist way of life, it has become second nature for me to glance around our home and think, “What can I release today?” As I’m going from one room to the next, or am taking dishes to the sink, I invariably find something else that can go into the “giveaway” box. It is an ongoing process, and I enjoy it.
Clutter at its most basic level is anything that gets in the way of living the life you want to live. It drags you down and makes you feel heavy. It can be physical clutter, of course. Or digital clutter, as thesimplerlife.net describes.
But there is another form of clutter that is not so easy to address. I’m talking about the unseen “stuff” that lurks in our minds. The subliminal clutter, if you will.
Subliminal/mental clutter can be every bit as destructive and disruptive as other types of clutter. And it comes in many varieties. Some of these are:
- Negative thoughts
- Unhealthy relationships
- Outdated attitudes
- Unrealistic expectations
- The need always to be right
- Unfounded guilt
- Envious longing
- Old grudges
When dealing with below-the-surface mental clutter, the first step is bringing it to your awareness. Look at it. Name it. Oftentimes we are not even aware that something is bugging us or not serving our best interests until we actually stop and identify it.
The second step is to decide if it is no longer serving you. Is this quality bringing more joy to your life? Or is it blocking the flow of energy you would prefer to embrace?
The third step is to consider that it may be time to release this manifestation of subliminal clutter. It might be time to let it go.
If the process seems too daunting to do alone, don’t underestimate the value of seeking help from a mental health professional. As Erin of unclutterer.com suggests,
When clutter is out of control in your physical space, you can turn to a professional organizer to help you get things in order — so why not turn to a professional to help you get rid of the mental clutter?
Getting rid of subliminal/mental clutter leads to greater clarity and peace of mind. It also creates the space for new insights and ideas. It may not be easy, but, ultimately, it’s worth the effort.
Your turn: “What can you release today?”