Hello! I confess that I have been in blog hiding for several weeks. We Minnesotans were in the midst of frigid temperatures and a massive snowstorm at the time of my last post; the same time at which my ability to turn thoughts into written word was also frozen. The good news (or bad depending on what you think of my writing) is that my brain has thawed and I have a plenty of new thoughts to share! I will try not to ramble, "too much."
Too Much is Too Much! I repeat this almost every day--my kids and clients can attest to this. It is one of my favorite phrases becuase it is simple, appropriate for all ages, and is always applicable. It is an adapted version of Walter Annenberg's quote: "Too Much of one thing is unsound." I realize this could ignite a philosophical debate--not going there--think big picture and practical daily living, and how we often experience too much. Too much stuff, too much activity, too much hurry--you get the idea.
Now that Spring has arrived (or at least that is what the calendar tells us), and we are gearing up for summer activities and trips and reunions and weekends at the lake etc., it is a good time to think about clearing out the clutter from our lives--our schedules, activities, and physical closets. What areas of your life seem weighted with too much? Undestand that there is no judgement here--we all have these areas and we can all benefit from identifying them and taking action to let go of those which are no longer contributing to our highest good. If we neglect to take action, and keep adding to the junk pile without a cleanse, we tire, and eventually start showing stress cracks. It might look like stress, or worry, it might feel like illness, and often results in displaced reactions. We snap at the wrong time, most often, at the people who are not the cause of the problem--as in barking at family members, an innocent store clerk, fellow driver, or referee at a sporiting event. These are the moments when we feel impatient and out of control. Can you relate?
In today's fast paced world, adults make upwards of 35,000 conscious decisions per day, depending on their level of responsibility (Quora.com). No wonder we are edgy--too many choices, too much! Are there any areas of your life where you can scale back and eliminate at least a few choices per day in order to do more of what you want? Think: Simplify! Respectfully saying no to a request we really don't have time to fit in the schedule, or have the desire to do, makes way for a yes in another area of our life. Is this possible? It takes practice, but you will find that people are more understnading that you expect and they move on rather quickly.
How about your physical closets, dressers and drawers? When you open them, can you easily find just what you are looking for, or is there a bit of hide and seek that occurs? Or maybe the choices are too much for your morning brain to comprehend? Statistics tell us that the average working woman spends 90 minutes per work week choosing her clothes and the average man, 70 minutes. This is roughly three full days per year! I can see where the uniform conecpet might be worth a try! Often, we hold onto stuff because we get practical ( I love those jeans--just need to lose a few pounds) or overwhelmed thinking about sorting through it all. I get it.
I offer a suggestion. Break the task down into manageable steps and time frames; one drawer, countertop, or closet at a time. Five or ten minutes is a good start! Eventually, this exercise becomes a habit, and you will find that you look forward to it! You will feel more empowered to say no to more of what you don't want. It is freeing to remove what is no longer serving you in a healthy way. Life moves on and so must we! Preserve what brings you joy--and let the rest go!
It has been proven that when we let go and clear out the physical and mental clutter in our lives, we simultaneously shift the quality of our "inner" closets. As a result, our outlook, health, and the quality of our relationships improve, and we are more present and available to do what brings us happiness.
So much for short and simple! Best wishes to you if you decide to give this a try. Remember, each day is a new beginning and it all starts with one baby step.....