Friday, February 26, 2016

Close the Door on the Past and De-Clutter.

Emotional attachment to things.  We all have it for one thing or another.  It's typically defined as a feeling of attachment to something, based on the memories it represents.  It may represent a past relationship.  A job you loved.  A sport you used to play.  A beautiful trip you took. Or anything else you have a strong memory of.  We, mistakenly, confuse the item for the memory.  In other words, we tend to falsely believe that if we get rid of the thing, the memory will fade as well.  We may also believe that the person who may have given it to us would get personally offended if we were to let it go.  Especially those who have passed and left possessions behind.  

Although the intentions in keeping the items are good, the act of keeping them has it's downside... clutter.  Do we really have to keep every single craft our kids made in school from Pre-K to 5th grade? Should we keep every Christmas card, birthday card and trinket ever given to us? (If you're a teacher, can I get an "Amen!" on that one??).  Must we hang on to love letters and presents from past relationships (hmmmnnnn.... now that's a good one!)?  The list can go on and on and on.  In fact, how do you think storage unit companies make money? Off of people's, mostly unreasonable, attachment to their stuff.  Maybe we don't have a memory, but instead we carry an anxiety that we may need xyz item at some point in the future? We'll cover that in a different post.  But, for the things we attach an emotional value to, we need to make like Elsa and perhaps just let it go.  The memory will continue to live on with you forever.  No one can take that from you.  But, stuff? Is just stuff.  Without the memory, it represents no more than a thing without any real value.  

So, how do we begin a good de-cluttering plan? By closing the door on the past.  The past is there for a reason.  It's not meant to be re-lived day in and day out.  Keep the memories where they should be... in the past.  No, that's not being cruel or mean.  It's a healthy habit.  One that doesn't make us a bad person, it just makes us someone who's made peace with past relationships, jobs, roles, etc... and has resolved into having and cherishing those wonderful memories without the overwhelming clutter.

Let's start today.  Let's grab that box out of the garage and begin going through it.  We shall reminisce, laugh, cry.  Invite a friend over to blab about it with.  Once we've gone through it, let's give it away or toss it.  You'll be amazed at the therapeutic value it will bring to your heart and soul to be able to practice non-attachment to the physical world and be able to move on with the present moment.  Your house will look really clean and pretty too.