Do you ever find yourself looking at a cluttered area of your home, thinking, “Didn’t I just clear that off?” Recurring clutter can feel like a losing battle, amiright? I mean, why even bother if it’s going to sneak back in a day or two?
So how do you keep a space clutter free once you’ve cleared it? There are a couple approaches that are key: one practical and one spiritual.
First, from a practical standpoint, do you have a system in place for managing the influx? For example, let say mail piles up quickly on your table. Does your current routine involve dropping it there and going through it every few days? If so, I’m sure you’ve seen how quickly a few days turns into a week or more of unopened mail.
Instead, try something like this:
Sort your mail as soon as you retrieve it from your mailbox.
Recycle any junk mail straight away and only keep that which needs your attention.
Separate letters by recipient if you have a multi-person household.
Open up your items and immediately recycle/discard any extraneous advertisements, envelopes, etc, and finally
Create a home where you can then put the various categories of mail, e.g. bills, correspondence, statements, etc.
Establishing a routine for common items sets you up for success with managing it on an ongoing basis.
If you have some good systems in place, but still find clutter creeping back in, it’s time to dig deeper and consider what it’s trying to tell you. When you see clutter as a messenger instead of a monster, you can heal areas of your life you’ve likely struggled with for a long time.
For example, I know when I gain weight (a common form of recurring clutter for me), that’s a sign that something is out of alignment in my life. To address this clutter, I can either investigate what that “something” might be and take steps to right its course, or if I am having trouble identifying what “it” is, I can work on eliminating the clutter (in this case, by exercising more and eating better) which will likely stir the pot and bring me face-to-face with that elusive “something.”
Clutter is almost never just about the “stuff.” That’s why it can be so triggering at times. If it was just that basket of clothes that need to be put away, it would merely be a nuisance. But when that basket of clothes represents the lack of support you feel you get from your spouse or children, it becomes much bigger than that.
So the next time you find yourself up against recurring clutter, pause and reflect on what else could be going on. What might be out of alignment in your life? Are you over-giving and feeling tapped out? Are you taking courageous steps toward embracing your authentic self and getting some backlash from people in your life? Are you blazing a trail that’s making others uncomfortable?
Let your clutter be your guide. Because your outer world reflects your inner world, be sure to look inward for the solution.
I wish you space and clarity,