Despite eating well and living a very high quality life for over 20 years, there is an area of my life that needed improvement and I didn’t know how much until I made some major changes. That is the quality and amount of “stuff” that I owned as well as the number of things I committed to. I discovered The Life Changing Magic of Tidying Up by Marie Kondo in the summer of 2015. After reading the first chapter, I immediately set about and started “tidying up” and I still haven’t stopped. The basic premise of this very powerful book is to only be surrounded by things that you love and to get rid of anything that does not bring you joy. While this might sound simple, it is actually a very profound credo for living.
I have not been a messy or even disorganized person but I still kept things around thinking I would use them at some point or because a special person gave them to me. But I didn’t know how much all of this extra stuff was weighing me down until I began to “Tidy Up”.
Upon my first 2 week “Tidy Up”, where I tackled my home office, I felt so much lighter and more energized. It was actually exhilarating to get rid of so much stuff, paperwork, old love letters, old pictures, old books and other items than no longer brought me joy. I got rid of more than 75% of the things in my office and filled up 2 huge trashcans with things that no longer brought me joy. When I was done and my office was cleansed, I felt an extreme peace of mind that I have never felt before. In the process, I also found over $175 that I didn’t know I had, important documents that had been missing, and got to release things that no longer had energy for me or served a purpose in my life anymore.
This has transferred over to other parts of my life too. I used to say yes to so many things and then my energy would be scattered and depleted. Now if I don’t feel joy when someone asks me to do something, I say NO! This even includes good paying jobs! I was recently asked to cook for a family for 1 day. I could have made a quick $600 but I would have had to reorganize my peacefully planned couple of days and bend over backwards to get the job done. As I felt into the stress the job would have brought me despite the money, I said no and let it go. I had no regrets and didn’t think twice about it again.
Because of this philosophy I have also let go of many activities that I used to do. For example, I used to write recipes for a monthly magazine. While I enjoyed this somewhat, the stress of it began to be very un-joyful for me. I also was doing this for free! I also cooked for many conferences…for free! I was also on the board of a valuable food activist organization too (another volunteer job). While I felt honored to be on the board, the meetings certainly did NOT bring me joy! There were actually many other things I was apart of that were not bringing me joy and it added up to adding a lot of stress and resentment to my life.
Using this guideline as what to say yes to in my life has been very clarifying and freeing for me and has helped me to let go of things that were taking up unnecessary valuable time and that were draining my energy.
I wanted to share part of my process with you because now I help others with this. In 2016 I became a Certified Space Clearing Specialist. This has been a very special new offering that sort of just came to me and I have found that I am very good at it! My Space Clearing service consists of me going to people’s homes and doing an energetic cleansing on their home as well as a blessing. And while “Tidying Up” is not part of the process, I find the clearings get people motivated to start getting rid of things that no longer bring them joy. What I have found is that when we have stuff around that does not bring us joy, it not only blocks energy flow of a space, but clutters our mental energy as well.
I hope this post has inspired you to get The Life Changing Magic of Tidying Up and to start to release things that no longer bring you joy too! Have you already implemented these tools into your life? Please let me know about it. I would love to hear how it has changed things for you.