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De-clutter Your Life: Tips & Tricks

How can I de-clutter my life? What are the actual steps and why are they important?

You often hear the phrase “declutter your life” tossed around when listing ways on how people can be more creative, less stressed, and more organized. It does help in all these aspects of our lives but many of us struggle to achieve this because we are not clear on exactly how to proceed. Clutter is unnecessary and can stifle our ability to function at our highest capacity. Clutter is chaos and disorganization. It is what happens when there is mindless and continual accumulation without making room or organizing things in a way that adds value to our lives. Clutter does not only exist in the form of objects and possessions. Our social lives, physical spaces, relationships, and nutrition can be cluttered. We often do not realize this because, after a while, we become one with our environment. We adapt to the conditions around us and often times become comfortable or trapped in a quagmire of our own making. Here are some tips on how to begin creating space for the things that matter.

Physical Space

The spaces that you constantly occupy can become cluttered because you have too many things or do not store them properly. First, you should begin with the physical area that you spend most of your day in. This could be an office, a cubicle, a bedroom, a kitchen or anywhere you spend 50-100 percent of your time. Take some time to observe the area and note the things that you have not used in a while. Once you have done that, select those items and put them in a pile together. Think about why you have not used them. As you come to the realization that you never will, put them in a garbage bag, bin or box. Next, look at the things you do use and organize them in a way that makes sense to you. This could be by size, the frequency of use, color, shape, etc. The key is to make sure that the remaining items are easily accessible if you use them quite often. When you are finished, the space is clean and pleasing to look at. Once you start doing this, you will come to find that your brain can now focus much more. You can also clean your space by sweeping, mopping, or dusting it. Open the nearest window or door if you can. Allow some light and fresh air to permeate your sanctum sanatorium. Another way to keep your physical space clear is to limit the things you add to it. This means less shopping sprees and impulsive buying. Once you have conquered clearing your primary space, do the same thing for all areas where you live, work, or play.

Mental Space

Your mind is your control room and sometimes anxiety, depression, and other mental maladies take over. Meditation techniques, self-help books, music, exercise, socializing, and a host of other things work wonders for our mental well-being. A good balance of things that make you happy can keep your mind sharp. However, sometimes self-help is not enough. Yes, you can do guided meditations, yoga, use stress balls, Baoding balls, herbs, and so many other treatments or coping mechanisms. The reality is that sometimes this is not enough. If you sense that your mind is preventing you from living your life as you used to or it’s limiting your capacity to function on a daily level, then you should consult a healthcare physician as soon as possible.

It is also important to only read, view, and listen to things that add value to you as a person and do so in moderation. For example, I think we can all agree that binging on Netflix every day of the week for countless hours is destructive. Constantly listening to music through your earphones and ignoring your surroundings is probably not a wise choice. Sometimes the best gift you can give your mind is silence.

The people that you entertain in your lives can also affect you mentally. Whether it’s that negative co-worker or domineering in-law, people affect us. If at all possible, try to limit your interaction with these people. If that is not possible then reduce their influence on you by telling yourself that they exist on the periphery of your life and you will not let them ruin your day.

Nutrition

If you are satisfied with your diet as it is and your health is not being affected by what you eat, then kudos to you. You have mastered the art of making your body your temple. A diet that is simple and balanced works wonders for your body but also your wallet. There is no need to add 7 different toppings to your pizza, for example. If you feel you must, then by all means do so but the idea here is to eat healthy simple foods that do not leave you feeling regret. If you feel physically ill, displeased, or disgusted with your dietary habits and even your doctor has mentioned it once or twice, it’s time to do something about it. Find the place in your kitchen where you store unhealthy food. Look at the contents, say goodbye, and let them go. Do this in small increments over the course of a few weeks or a month. It’s harder to quit unhealthy habits cold turkey. Graduation is best here. If you find that you keep going grocery shopping despite there being enough food, then limit your spending. Try to deplete your reserves before restocking. There is also a strong possibility that you have expired products in your kitchen. Do a thorough inventory and sort that out. Organize your kitchen supplies and food in a way that is visually appealing. For example, remove items from plastic bags and place them in transparent containers.

Hopefully, these tips will prove helpful to you and help you organize your life the way you want it.

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