Are You Keeping Too Many Doors Open?

Have you ever gathered up donations only to have them sit in your house, hallway, or car for days, weeks, or months before sending it on its way?

You have the best of intentions, you made great progress, and then, Wham! You slam on the brakes.

What’s up with that?

As you’ve likely heard me say, stubborn clutter is almost always an indication of a non-clutter issue. Well, at least a non-physical clutter issue.

Could you be hanging on to the items “just in case?”

Maybe you’re succumbing to IMNTSS – I Might Need This Someday Syndrome?

There can be something comforting about leaving ends loose; about not seeing something through to completion. Doing so keeps doors open and gives you permission to change your mind. It also alleviates your fear of potentially making the wrong decision.

But you know what this results in? “Possibility” clutter.

A lack of follow-through on removing what stands in your way of living out loud is a lack of commitment to your life; to your dreams; to your goals.

Instead, it’s a commitment to maintaining the status quo. Of continuing to run on the hamster wheel of life, and never making any marked changes to the same old, same old.

If you say you want to take your life in a different direction but never travel down a new path, your actions don’t match your intentions and the universe is gonna call bullshit.

All this is not to help you beat yourself even more! Instead, I want to help you see the “why” behind your inaction in a different way so you can learn from it.

What if there’s actually a benefit to going around in circles?

Maybe there’s a payout to not dropping off those donations. Yes, really.

See if any of this ring true for you:

  • “If I don’t complete a task or project, then I don’t have to do the next thing. Good thing because that next move is scary/intimidating/overwhelming!”
  • “I’m much more comfortable living in pursuit; chasing the dream. It’s exciting. What if the finish line isn’t all it’s cracked up to be?”
  • “Striving to make a change gives me a sense of purpose. Who would I be having made the change? What purpose would I have then?”
  • “I know who I am when I am trying. I don’t know who I am when I’ve succeeded.”

Any of the above is an example of what I refer to as “the message in the mess.” Investigating the “why” behind not doing something can be telling about where your fear is in charge; where your old beliefs are playing out; or where your life instruction manual needs upgrading.

We’re conditioned to believe that our worth is defined by what we do rather than who we are. Being busy might be a socially admirable trait, but it can be a personal nightmare. By keeping too many plates spinning or too many loose ends untied, you distract yourself from the most important work — that of making and keeping space for abundance to come to you in all its forms.

Does that influx of abundance sometimes require scary steps? Absolutely. And it’s in that scary stuff that all the juicy goodness lies.

Comfortable is boring.

And stagnant.

And results in the same outcome.

If you want something different, you have to do something different. So what will you do differently this week?

What do you think might be getting in your way of seeing things through to the end?

Join the conversation in the comments below.

12 replies
  1. Denise Link
    Denise Link says:

    Yes, yes, yes. Downsizing into a space that is already full of my parent’s stuff. Learning how to “let go” of future and past projects and live in the “now”. So easy to toss their stuff, lots of memories attached to my mine. I have to take breaks to level out the emotions.

    • Kerri
      Kerri says:

      Thanks for sharing, Denise! Oh yes, taking breaks is an important step in clearing out and downsizing. You mustn’t let your younger self/resistance feel neglected or ignored. Otherwise, she’ll get louder to get your attention. And remember — the beautiful memories you have live in your heart, not in the items. Should you choose to let go of the items, the memories remain.

  2. Gina
    Gina says:

    I feel like you looked at my life right now and posted this for me. I want to tell you to stop reprimanding me! LOL

    Ever since the webinar for Be Open, you’ve been speaking directly to me. I love how you’ve broken down the issue of clutter so that it can be managed holistically. Thank you thank you thank you!

  3. Lorna
    Lorna says:

    Great post, thank you Kerri. I think for me, I’m not clear what it is I’m pursuing. What if it isn’t anything (good)?! It’s like a chicken and egg situation of trying to clear the decks to get to living the dream… But I don’t really know what the dream is… But then I’ll never know while I remain buried under all this stuff!?! … How to get clarity and a direction when feeling a bit stuck!?!

    • Kerri
      Kerri says:

      Ooh, Lorna, I have just the thing for you. I am putting the final touches on a self-study, digital course title Design Your Dream Life. Keep an eye on my newsletter for a special flash sale for subscribers. In the meantime, I’d suggest spending 20 minutes or so daydreaming. Dream big about the type of life you’d love to live. Don’t worry about specifics. Focus more on the overall essence you crave. How do you want life to feel? Peaceful? Exhilarating? Adventurous? Easy? Then identify where in your life you already experience some of that and where in your life are you living the complete opposite. Take an inventory of sorts and start sorting/clearing an aspect that contradicts what you dream of.

      I hope that helps!

  4. Lorrie Freilich
    Lorrie Freilich says:

    That last one really speaks to me. It seems I just keep overcoming things. I asked myself, self? WhT would life be if all the clutter were done and clean. I was surprised my response was not “yay, I am free”. The response was deep breathe and “eek” Feeling. I seem to have the clutter done and clean in my head. I begin with great intention and then…….”life” stops me. I guess I just have to stay determined to overcome this as well. I just want some days where I do not have this nagging of “I should be doing something else”. SIGH!!

    • Kerri
      Kerri says:

      Oooh, Lorrie, you have GOLD in your comment here. You wrote that the feeling when thinking about the clutter being done and clean was deep breath and “eek.” Dig into that “eek.” That holds the clue to how keeping your clutter is benefitting you. What feels scary about it being gone? What would you then be free to focus on? Grab that journal!


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