Sober,From,Clutter-Part,Sober, DIY Sober From Clutter-Part 4
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Sober From Clutter-Part 4By: Janet L. Hall" Listening to your heart is not simple. Finding out who you are is not simple. It takes a lot of hard work and courage to get to know who you are and what you want."--Sue Bender, quoted in The Feminine Face of GodPain or sadness can stem from many factors and sources in your life, and manifest in just as many ways, one of which could be your clutter problem.Do you take a dose of pain or sadness "medicine" by not letting go of unused stuff or going out and becoming financial stressed by making purchases you won't use?What is your coping mechanism for your pain or sadness? Your stuff? What you hoard? Why you're a pack rat? Why you might overcompensate, overindulgence, shop 'til you drop, be a QVC Junkie, an E-Commerce shopper, or an Auction addict?Your pain or sadness might stem from you or your family having to endure great losses. Losses in your life can surely make you hold tight to the stuff your familiar with, especially if the loss was a loved one. To leave everything just as it was, or to hold on to departed loved ones stuff will leave no room for you to grow or to go forward with your life.One simple way to keep your loved ones memories alive, while not keeping all their stuff, is to create an altar that houses the precious memories and select items. You can create an altar on your dresser, a mantel, or a shelf.What about loss from nature or manmade disasters: flood, fire, earthquake, hurricane, war, and refugee? These types of losses in your past probably help you appreciate the things you do have and obtain. BUT it can also lead to overcompensation, holding on to, pack ratting, just in case, or a someday mentally. Be very careful when recovering from a disaster, focusing on keeping balance, and finding uses for all that you possess. Pain or Sadness Exercise:>>What pain or sadness are you carrying around on your back? >>Is your pain or sadness stemming from something that occurred a month, year, five or ten years ago? Longer?>>When are you going to release this pain, this sadness? >>When was the last time you felt fulfilled, really happy, without sadness or pain?>>Can you see it?>>What did it feel like?>>What is missing from your life that you don't feel fulfilled and you are using "stuff" as a substitute or an escape from your suffering?>>Is it possible that you mask your pain or sadness with STUFF, to protect yourself?>>Haven't you hurt or paid long enough?>>When are you going to stop hurting and get some help? All the piles, all the crammed rooms, stuffed closets, overcrowded attic and basement, all your "stuff" might have been yesterdays solutions to your pain or sadness but now have become your problems today!Eventually you will see that by buying or bringing more "stuff" into your life or your children's life will only temporarily solve your problems, or situations. A quick fix. And eventually, you will have too much "stuff," too many piles. This overspending and over buying can bring you several more problems: debt and clutter, less space, and even add to your pain or sadness. You haven't solved a thing. As a matter of fact, you've made matters worse for yourself, and possibly for others around you. One day you will have to deal with these new problems and situations. Finding new solutions. Hopefully healthy remedies.When you begin clearing out your clutter you'll create a vacuum and nature abhors a vacuum. But don't worry because something or someone will soon rush in to take the place of where your clutter use to reside. The form of replacement wouldn't necessarily be more STUFF. It may surprise you that someone or something (i.e. opportunities) might come into your heart, your Spirit, or your life might be filled with relief or happiness. Now you might have the ability to pursue and accomplish what you'd really like to do or be, now that you've made room.Are you open to the idea of being happy? If you are able to connect with your pain or sadness, and get it out, you'll be able to break the chains, the unwanted habits of clutter.Are you hurting yourself, your Spirit, and the world by continually bringing things into your life that you don't need or use? Basil the Great, bishop of Caesarea, stated around A.D. 365:"When someone steals a man's clothes we call him a thief. Should we not give the same name to one who could clothe the naked and does not? The bread in your cupboard belongs to the hungry man; the coat hanging unused in your closet belongs to the man who needs it; the shoes rotting in your closet belong to the man who has not shoes."Look around your home or office. Take a mental inventory and see what you can donate to those in need or to non-profit agencies in need.It's okay if you're not ready to de-clutter. Just as the alcoholic and drug addict, no one can make them change, or make them stop their self-abuse. They have to have a deep desire to stop, to take control of their lives, to overcome and eliminate their negative behavior and take one day at a time making positive changes in their life, so must you in dealing with your clutter.Get sober from clutter by taking it one day at a time or one area at a time. If you fall back into your old patterns, acknowledge the fall and get back on the wagon to being sober from clutter. Slowly, one day at a time. Dali Lamas' Tips to Making Changes:So, how will you accomplish this? What will be your approach?In the book, The Art of Happiness, in which Dr. Cutler interviews the Dali Lama about the process of change, he indicates that they are six steps you need to do in order to bring about change: education, conviction, determination, action, and effort. "...you must exert the effort to establish new habit patterns. This is the way that inner change and transformation take place in all things, no matter what you are trying to accomplish."The Dali Lama goes on to say, "...start by developing a strong willingness or wish to do it [what goal or action you are directing your efforts towards]. ...generate great enthusiasm. And, here, a sense of urgency is a key factor. ...It [sense of urgency] can give us tremendous energy. ...to generate commitment and enthusiasm to overcome negative behaviors or states of mind...is to be constantly aware of the destructive effects of the negative behavior. ...by making a steady effort, I think we can overcome any form of negative conditioning and make positive changes in our lives."I know you can be stronger then your fear, your pain, or your sadness. You can be stronger then your habitual spending, hoarding, or saving by being determined, by carving out the time, and by putting some effort into reasonable expectations of getting organized.Just like the alcoholic or drug addict, you are healing. Healing needs to take place in the mind, body, and Spirit to be effective. A big step towards your healing will depend on you having the knowledge of what you can do by yourself and the acceptance of the reality that you might need help.God, grant me the SerenityTo accept the things I cannot change...Courage to change the things I can,And Wisdom to know the difference.Living one day at a time,Enjoying one moment at a time,Accepting hardship as the pathway to peace.Taking, as He did, this sinful world as it is,Not as I would have it.Trusting that He will make all things rightI surrender to His will.That I may be reasonably happy in this life,And supremely happy with Him forever in the next.Amen.--Dr. Reinhold Niebuhr ~~~~~~~~~For additional help: The Organizing and Feng Shui Wizard,Janet L. Hall, FSII has a FREE newsletter, OverHall IT! athttp://www.overhall.com/newsletter.htm and manyorganizational products for your office, home, and computerat http://www.overhall.com/products.htmJanet is a Professional Organizer, Certified Feng ShuiPractitioner, Speaker, and Author and can help you regaincontrol of your life, your time, your stuff, and yourenvironment. Copyright Ó 2001 by OverHall ConsultingP.O. Box 263, Port Republic, MD 20676All Rights Reserved. Permission is granted to reproduce,copy, or distribute so long as article is kept intact, thiscopyright notice and full information about contacting theauthor is attached.