independent

Friday 22 February 2019

Making space for a great year ahead

There are many benefits from decluttering and organising your environment
There are many benefits from decluttering and organising your environment

Calodagh McCumiskey - Wellbeing & Meditation

The year has started. Most are us are getting into the swing of things this week. After a few weeks of living a very different paced life, meeting people we do not always see, doing things we don't do the rest of the year and having more rest and down time where a lot of deeper thinking happens, it is a great time to look around at your life and space and see things afresh.

There are a lot of pressures we must survive everyday to keep things simple. We are bombarded with so many advertisements daily encouraging us to buy and accumulate more that pray on our insecurities. We are told we will be happier / healthier / better if we get this, do that or go there. We also get a dopamine hit when we buy more stuff and our inner greedy person (if you have one) enjoys the temporary feeling of more because he or she wants everything now.

There is more and more talk about minimalism in the last 10 years-how it gives you more time, freedom, creativity, money and joy. Marie Kondo's current Netflix programme about the benefits of decluttering and organising is getting a lot of attention and inspires many to only keep things that bring a 'spark of joy'.

Whatever way you like to look at things, there is a lot of value in keeping things simple. A few years ago, I heard a few facts that made me think-the average British child has 238 toys and plays with 12. The average American home has grown by three times in the last 50 years and one out of 10 Americans have off-site storage. I remember when moving from India to Ireland 10 years ago - I left 95 percent of my worldly possessions in storage for over a year and hardly missed anything.

As time passes our needs and focus changes. Things we loved when we bought them 5 years ago may not be relevant to us today. Tidying your space has the effect of tidying up your mind and life and helps you face things.

While extreme minimalism or having a fixed number of possessions may not be for all of us, the general approach has a lot to offer. The process involves sitting down and defining what you want your life to be about and planning what you need to keep to make that happen - and removing what distracts you from that - everywhere - at home, at work, in your car, handbag, manbag and where ever else you leave your footprint.

If you are spending too many hours cleaning what you don't use or what doesn't give joy maybe it is time to let them go? There are many systems of organising and decluttering on offer. They all have their merits. They generally offer the same or similar pointers. Look at everything in your life and only keep what you love or use (what helps you live a good life).

The benefits are many. Most importantly, you will have more time in the day as less time is spent cleaning, organising and looking for things. You will have less stress and anxiety and your space will be more organised which all helps bring mental clarity. You will feel lighter. You will probably have more money as you are less inclined to buy stuff when you see how much you already have.

The most important thing is that what you have in your life should enrich it, and help you do what you want and need to do.

Wish you a wonderful week.

The Argus

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