Don’t you get tired of beating yourself up for not doing this or not doing that? Maybe you tell yourself that you need to get your act together, to stop being so lazy, or to have some damn willpower.
If you were to dig into this emotional clutter, you might find that you’re not so lazy after all. Maybe you’re just scared.
I know what you’re thinking. Scared? What’s so scary about eating better and exercising? About job hunting? About cleaning out the closet?
Let’s do a little excavating. Why might you not be making better food choices? Could it be that you think once you start, you’ll never get to have anything yummy again? Will you have to feel those uncomfortable emotions that bubble up because you won’t have snacks to stuff them down? Does it feel unsafe to lose weight and feel a little less “protected” by your armor? Maybe you know how to live in pursuit of health, but not sure who you’ll be once you get there.
Now let’s have a look at cleaning out the closet. What if some things in there remind you of a painful time in your life? Or it houses something left to you by your now-deceased loved one and you feel guilty at the idea of getting rid of it? Maybe you have unrealistic expectations of having to handle it completely once you start and struggle to give yourself permission to tackle the project in small chunks. All of these things make it far from appealing to dig in.
Do you see how there can be a lot more going on around ticking things off your to-do list and accomplishing goals than you think? We’re so quick to go to a defeatist place when we’re not making the moves we want, but remember, healthy, permanent change never comes from a self-punitive place. Sometimes, the best way to start clearing out the thoughts and things that you no longer want is to give yourself a loving and reassuring pep talk and to explore your hesitation.
If you find yourself bumping up against resistance to getting started, consider these thoughts:
- How would it feel to have the task done? Dig below the first response of “great!” What would it really mean to have it done? What would be the positive results? More importantly, what, if any fears come up at the idea of accomplishing it?
- Are you really ready for the success you crave? Is there something in staying stuck that feels safer?
- Is there an old belief that’s popping up as you plan your attack? Were you taught to not get too big for your britches? Do you not feel worthy of success? Are you hesitant to put yourself out there for fear of what others may think or want?
Instead of beating yourself up, stop and take a look inward to the source of your resistance. Try meditating, journaling, or simply closing your eyes and taking a few deep breaths. Let that younger part of you know that you love her even before the job is done, and invite her to share what’s behind the procrastination.
I’d love to hear from you in the comments below. Where do you feel stuck? What might be getting in your way? Got any tips to help others get going?
If you’d like more support on excavating the source of emotional clutter (or any kind, for that matter), I invite you to join me for my 30-Day Clutter Buster Challenge starting October 3, 2013. Come together with like-minded peeps who are ready to celebrate and challenge you as you get back into the driver’s seat of your life. (Please note: Early bird pricing ends THIS Friday, September 20, 2013).
Check out Claire’s experience from the last round:
“I took Kerri’s clutter class, and, after a slow start for me, everyone else was posting these major clutter clearing successes, and I just sat there and sighed. Then one day, I started cleaning off my desk, which led to more, and before I knew it, I had filled our truck with six loads of gifts for other people! And in five months, I lost 30 pounds, sold some antique furniture that had been weighing me down, and gained some much-needed confidence. I was unhappy with my job, and my newly created space opened my mind and alerted the Universe that I was ready for positive change. Three months later, I was promoted to a corporate position and moved to a beautiful place where there are actually four seasons! I urge anyone who is ready for positive change to sign up for this class.”
So what do you say? I’d love to have you join us! Click here for more info and to register.