... one of the greatest lessons all moms must learn at some point – unless they want to go crazy --is to EMBRACE CHAOS! From the moment of conception (and even before then!), we learn that when push comes to shove, we have pretty much no control over most things in life. So we might as well let go and have some fun.
One of my favorite movies is “Parenthood,” directed by Ron Howard. I totally love one of the final scenes where all hell breaks loose during a school play. While the kids wreak havoc on and off stage, the audience (full of parents) is depicted as riding a wild and glorious roller coaster. Some of the parents are holding on for their dear lives, all contracted and full of anxiety. (Steve Martin plays one of them brilliantly.) Others have big grins on their faces, and arms joyously flailing up in the air.
The invitation of this classic film, of course, is to surrender to the ride of life. It’s wild, surprising, completely out of our control, and wonderful all at the same time.
You might wonder why I introduce an article dedicated to ORGANIZATION with this particular scene. I do so because if I’ve learned anything, it’s that the solutions to most problems are paradoxical in nature.
If we want our lives to be more organized as moms (and I definitely believe this is a worthy goal that can have an incredibly positive impact on our lives), then we’d be wise to simultaneously embrace the fact that PERFECT ORDER is not what it’s about. Organization at its best facilitates and enhances life.
Perfect order squeezes every last drop out of it.
In honor of this paradoxical exploration, I’d like to introduce you to a deeply inspiring woman who has supported and empowered countless human beings who were drowning in a sea of life-diminishing chaos. She has not only contributed an inspiring article to this newsletter, but wrote The Little Book of Freedom from Clutter!
And now, below, I give you "6 Steps to Clear Your Clutter" -- written by ALISON MARKS!!!!
6 STEPS TO CLEAR YOUR CLUTTER Special Article by Alison Marks
Believe it or not, living in a decluttered space – one that runs smoothly and is full of things that make you feel good – is a possibility for you. Even with kids! Get out a notepad and pen! Here are six steps you can take to get control of the clutter in your life.
Inquire and Inspire: Write out the answer to this question: How would my life and my family's life be different if there was no clutter in it? Be specific in your answer. How would you feel in your home? How would you spend your time differently? How would your family relationships be different? Look at all the different areas of your life – your social life, your financial life, etc. When you get clear about what’s possible, you can do the work that needs to be done from a perspective of inspiration rather than guilt.
Scan: What clutter, exactly, do you need to clear?
Let’s break this down:
FIRST, write down all those things you that have been bugging you, the ones that make you cringe when you read the word “declutter.” You know the ones! Your list may be short or long. It could include things like: magazines and newspapers, other paper clutter, old files, books, music, junk drawers, tchothkes and collections, things you haven’t used in the last year, clothing, jewelry, bathroom drawers and cabinets, unwanted gifts, desk, computer files, email in-box, your purse, briefcase, wallet, photos, old letters and mementos, closets, storage areas, your car, fridge/freezer and pantry, etc.
NEXT, walk through your home or work space and add to the list any other areas of clutter. This may include:
- any piles or places where disorganization accumulates - unfinished projects - too much stuff in too small a space - things you’re holding onto that bring your energy down in any way. Be honest here… if you don’t use it or really love it, or if you feel obligated to hold onto it, it is not doing you any good at all. In fact, it's harming you by polluting your space so there’s not room for the things you really would love.
Organize: Now take five pages in your notebook and write one of the following on the top of each page:
1. under 10 minutes 2. 10 minutes – 1 hour 3. 1 – 3 hours 4. half to full day 5. large project
Decide how much time each item on your list will take and write each one on the appropriate page.
1. Plan: Block out time on your calendar to do it. Break down the larger projects into chunks that are do-able in a day or less. If possible, enlist some help. If you live alone, suggest to a friend that you trade time to do this.
2. Prepare: Before you go into a decluttering project, set yourself up with boxes or bags for different purposes (garbage, recycle, thrift store, give/return to people, and a transit box for things that go to other rooms when you’re done), as well as a notebook where you can jot down the things that require follow-up.
3. Do it! There is no right or wrong way, but there are some things to keep in mind that will make it easier for you.
Click hereto read an article on MISSION: Recovering from Life-Purpose Amnesia
Check out the Designed to Blossom Self-Study Program, Creative Workbook/Foundational Course & Resource Book.
Disclaimer: Rosy is an ordained minister of Designed to Blossom of AIWP and provides something more akin to spiritual counseling than psychotherapy. The work she does is with highly functional people, for whom ‘spirit’ plays a central role in their life. Rosy does not give diagnoses, work with pathology, or claim to be an expert offering a treatment or cure.