Thursday, July 13, 2006

Clearing out the clutter

Imagine this: your office is clean, no clutter to be found anywhere (okay, just don't open the desk drawers). You've given away a ton of junk (well, it's piled by the driveway, awaiting the arrival of the junk man). Your once impossible-to-walk-through carport is nearly empty, your cluttered porches are clean and hold only patio furniture, the storage shed holds only gardening supplies...

For most of my life, I've lived with other people's junk. I inherited some stuff from my grandparents, some from my parents, some was left by the kids when they left home, some was thrust upon me by my flea-market-loving husband, and some I managed to inflict upon myself.

My garage, closet, and upstairs bedroom are still overflowing, but I'm tackling those next.

Why do we hold onto old stuff we don't need or want? As I look up at my newly-cleaned bookshelves, I still see a dozen books I could get rid of, old RWR's I'll probably never read, 6 telephone books (yes, they're for different cities, but honestly!), 22 bottles of vitamins (If I were to take a dose of each, it would probably kill me), and a stack of old manuscripts that have since been revised. Obviously, I still have a lot of work to do.

But the upside is, I've written more pages since I cleaned my office than I have in months. It's like the clutter around me clutters my mind, as well, and staunches the flow of creativity. Feng Shui will tell you that clutters also blocks opportunities. I don't know about that, but I did get a phone interview the day after I cleared the clutter out of my office, so maybe it's true.

I just cleaned off the shelves above my washer and dryer. Does that mean the laundry will start doing itself? Hmmm. Somehow, I doubt it. But I have found cleaning one thing leads to the desire to clean something else, so now I'm off to tackle the closet. If you don't hear from me within a week, send the rescue dogs!

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