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Decluttering My Life

woman sitting on the couch readingLast night, I curled up on the couch after dinner and treated myself to a movie. From the many choices, I decided on an old favorite, “Father of the Bride,” starring Steve Martin. In it was an old Ella Fitzgerald song that I had totally forgotten about titled “Give Me the Simple Life.”

It reminded me that it’s that time of the year again—time for household inventory and a bit of decluttering. Where does this stuff come from? Why am I hanging on to it when I haven’t used it for years? What is inside those boxes that haven’t seen the light of day for the past decade? What purpose do these things serve in enhancing my life experience? The nice thing about the process is that it can also be a productive time to look at all the “clutter” inside my head (that “sinking thinking” that Zig Ziglar used to talk about, because we know that the mind does what we tell it).

So while I route through the closets and cubbyholes, I expand the process and refresh my daily schedule. Here is my plan to simplify life and maximize my enjoyment of it:

  1. A simple morning routine: shower, brush teeth, dress, and make the bed before coffee. Coffee is my payoff for the discipline to get ready for the day.
  2. Review, rotate, donate, or discard clothes to declutter the closet. My payoff is space for a special new item.
  3. Breathing fresh air every day. Just going outside and walking around the yard, experiencing the weather, looking, listening, and breathing deeply is refreshing and perks me up.
  4. Tidy up and prioritize my workspace to organize my thoughts on the main task at hand. The reward as Winchester said in “M*A*S*H”: “I do one thing really well and then I move on.”
  5. Take a break! I cannot do it all. I have limits. When I start to feel overwhelmed, I need to step back, reevaluate, and simplify. The payoff is acknowledging that I’m only human and that saying “no” is OK.

Please, tell me what works best for you. I’ll be listening.

I Care, Barb

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