“It was one of those March days when the sun shines hot and the wind blows cold: when it is summer in the light, and winter in the shade.”
~ Charles Dickens
As spring rolls around, there is a certain feeling of optimistic freshness that can inspire one to clean, purge and start anew!
Pause for a moment and look around your home. Observe each room, circling it a few times to fully absorb the details of each square footage and ask yourself:
Which areas of each room inspire and make the heart smile?
Are there any areas jam-packed with too many things, creating clutter and chaos?
Are any items outdated that don’t resonate with your current lifestyle?
Several years ago, I read the book, “Clear Your Clutter With Feng Shui” by Karen Kingston (highly recommended). As a result, I started getting rid of things, even old diaries that I felt held painful memories and old stagnant ways of being. If an object inspired negativity, old unwanted patterns or ambivalence, I often let it go.
Luckily, I am not very nostalgic, so this is was easy for me in certain ways.
I peeled away layers and layers, disliking holding onto things that were not useful or beautiful to me.
The only objects I had difficulty letting go of were items I couldn’t donate to charity, give away to friends or recycle. I don’t know about you, but I just hate adding to landfill waste. What does one do with used lipstick, burnt-out incandescent light bulbs and broken candle votives?
There is a beauty to having less, which can feel more sustainable, abundant and liberating!
Here are some benefits of letting go of stuff and accumulating less:
- The energy and look of your home will be more spacious, airy and clear.
- It is therapeutic and cleansing to let go of objects that carry ambivalent or negative associations.
- As it becomes less cluttered and bogged down by stuff, there is a sense of being clearer and lighter inside.
- Less stuff to organize and clean, means more free time.
- A chance to look within and heal: do you compulsively collect, hoard or emotionally shop rather than face some difficult feelings? Perhaps this is a time to truly listen to yourself on a deeper level, and see what really feeds your soul. Take the steps to start creating a more nurturing life and enlist support from caring, insightful friends, therapists and healers or find a similar topic workshop. There are professional organizers that can help declutter and organize, too.
- Freedom of movement: it’s easier to change residences with less stuff to pack and move.
- Sustainability: consuming less of the Earth’s precious resources means less deforestation, less habitat destruction, less mountain-top removal and strip mining for minerals, less pollution, less toxins, less endangered/extinct species and the health and well-being of the human race for generations to come. Buy second-hand or find a more sustainable version of the item.
- Less expensive: use the money for things that truly nurture you like buying organic food, getting a massage, taking an eco-travel adventure, or whatever makes your heart sing.
- Less stuff, like gadgets and electronics, means less television, video games and distractions, so you can focus on what truly matters. With more quality time, you can connect with the world around you, with friends and family, and engage positively with your community and with nature.
- Getting rid of stuff is also an opportunity to be generous. Perhaps, friends and family could use what you no longer need. And doesn’t it feel good to give? Donate to a local charity or give it away on Freecycle. Heck, be generous and make some money selling castaways on Craigslist or in a yard sale.
Find a sustainable way to clear clutter, don’t just throw stuff away in trash bags.
For example: do you have a shirt with a hole in it? Perhaps it may not be suitable to donate to a charity but you might be able to donate to a textile recycling program near you? Just a thought.
To learn more about recycling resources in your area visit Earth911.
Take this tiny step so less stuff ends up in a landfill.
Happy Spring and may you enjoy the potential of new beginnings this season brings!
Love elephant and want to go steady?
Editorial Assistant: Jessica Sandhu / Editor: Renée Picard