What Clearing My Clutter Taught Me
Updated: Jan 7, 2019
This week I’ve been starting the much dreaded life task of de-cluttering my life. I don’t own a lot of things, in fact, I’ve always prided myself on the less-is-more mantra, as I regularly throw things out or give them away. And yet, still my life collects clutter; unread emails, clothes that don’t fit, unopened mail, a car in serious need of vacuuming, junk drawers, need I go on? As an energy healer, it’s my mission to tackle and assist in clearing the chaos of myself and other’s energy fields. But, since our physical world is always a mirror of our energetic world, I knew that my clutter was a message. So, I cleaned and listened and felt. And, what I realized was that not only was my clutter talking loudly to me, it also offered me a really big opportunity for expansion.
While gaining new awareness of my “junk” (literally) was a great experience, I will say, it was a bit of a commitment. I’m not exactly talking about a little spring cleaning here. I decided to do a total overhaul, even if it took me months to get to all of it. So, to motivate myself, I started the smallest way I could think of. With emails. I have three major email accounts. My business one is nice and tidy. The other two have been around for years, and when I looked, I was shocked to realize that I had over 14,000 unopened emails between them! I had junk mail coming out my ears, and old subscriptions that no longer applied. It felt daunting and a little shameful to realize how bad it had gotten. Still, I got to work. It took me three and a half hours the first day to clear all of the emails, unsubscribe, and out and zero my inboxes. No small task.
not only was my clutter talking loudly to me, it also offered me a really big opportunity for expansion
Next on the list was my old clothes. Then, my room. Changing the oil in my car. Forwarding my mail (no, I won’t tell you how long I procrastinated this one). The filing cabinet that collected all my papers I hadn’t bothered to go through in a year. The fridge. Updating my budget, and a long list of other things. From a look at my house which I like to keep clean, I didn’t even realize all the corners I was hiding things from myself. All of the clutter took hours to clear, and I’m still not finished with the list I set for myself! But, I made some headway, and even with lots to go, I was starting to see interesting messages appear and strong emotional patterns. While I don’t usually label myself as a particularly sentimental person, I realized that every object that I held on to had an emotion attached to it. I began to see that every email, or junk drawer spoke volumes about how I felt about that area of my life.
For instance, my unread emails were my unwillingness to face the past (some of them were over seven years old!). My unforwarded mail let me know that I hadn’t fully put both feet forward into my new move. My unworn clothes spoke to me about body issues, and memories of different times in my life where I wore the outfits. All of my loose papers told me about times when I was scared that it wasn’t ok to move on from past happy memories--it almost seemed cruel to throw away a handwritten letter from an old roommate that had once meant so much to me. Some objects told stories of lack or of times I didn’t know how to manifest what I needed, so I hoarded things that were once useful while unconsciously planning for the worst.
All of my inanimate objects were beginning to show their personal nature to me. And they also let me know what they meant. Some of their messages felt good. Some really, really didn’t.
every email, or junk drawer spoke volumes about how I felt about that area of my life
It was around the time I was cleaning, I was listening to a recording from Energy Worker, Christie Marie Sheldon. In it, she explained how if everything in her life fell apart, or imploded, she would be totally fine. On hearing this,I almost went back and listened again, because it couldn’t be that easy to just let things go, could it? The past shapes who I am. It’s not ok to just start fresh whenever I want, right?
But, the more I thought about it, the more I realized that the clutter was telling me that I was denying myself just that. Some of the objects in my life enhanced my freedom, and some made me feel trapped. And, it actually had nothing to do with my stuff! In fact, there are millionaires that have more than enough objects and finances to last them a lifetime, and yet they aren’t trapped by any of it. If they lost it all, they would simply create it again. Start fresh. New.
I’m not saying that I believe it’s bad to enjoy or keep objects. I think you can channel feelings of joy and gratitude through phones, nature, memorabilia, pianos, computers, or even money! What I am saying is that, at least for me, I was holding on to things that weren’t serving me anymore. I was holding on to things that I thought I needed or wanted, but they were objects that weren’t keeping up with the expansion of the real “me.” I finally had to ask myself: If I feel joy about something one day, is it ok if the next day I’m ready to let it go?
As it turned out, the objects that spoke of my fears were ready to be released. The objects that reminded me of joy and love let me know that it was ok create space for more joy and more love in my life. The exercise reminded me that every minute is a blank slate, the future an unwritten canvas. It encouraged me to embrace what’s ahead, ready to grasp whatever it is that brings me the most joy, even if it looks completely different than the life I built in the past. Even if it means letting go of the old the old and jumping boldly into the new.
In the end, my de-cluttering became a really spiritual practice for me as I took inventory of the idea that who I really am might not be a conglomerate of stories, memorabilia, or shameful junk drawers, but instead someone infinite, powerful and always changing, growing and expanding. The whole journey helped me realize that new experiences and joy are waiting in the wings, but sometimes that means being willing to let go of the familiar, and embrace the blank slate. Because, the truth is, the only places I’m stuck are the places that I choose to be.