Big Life News – my sister had a baby on Saturday!! I’m officially an Auntie! I am still waiting for them to return home from the hospital so I can officially meet her… but from pictures I can happily report she is healthy and absolutely precious!
We’ve been anticipating her (late!) arrival since the holidays and life threw us – along with the whole world of course! – a pretty major curveball in the way of coronavirus. For me, instead of the quick, easy, and cheap last minute flight home I intended upon her birth, it meant a 20+ hour road trip up the East Coast, a quarantine, and extra time at home. Talk about plot twists!
The upshot is – all this extra time at home awaiting the little one’s arrival has allowed me to dive in to the gargantuan task of purging. After years of putting it off, I’ve been finally going through, sorting, and purging belongings that have been collecting dust in my dad’s attic and cluttering up my old bedroom.
Though I’ve never watched the series or read her books, I guess I’ve been Marie Kondoing my life! And in the process of doing so, I’ve been reflecting quite deeply on the energetics of the clinging and letting go.
If the picture above doesn’t speak a thousand words – yes I feel lighter, freer, and excited for life!
Clearing out the Clutter – Perhaps obvious, yet often not easy
Before my mini odyssey, I’d been going through drawers and shelves at home in Miami and generally tidying up. For the last several months, I’ve largely been heeding my own advice from the beginning of the pandemic and focused inward as well as on my immediate environment. It feels good to clear the space of things I no longer need. Old papers, receipts, and even clothes that no longer feel like me are gone, having carried out that old stagnant energy with them.
From a tidiness standpoint, clearing out the clutter is a sensible and an obvious thing to do. I function better when my space is tidy. If things start to pile up on my desk or my vanity, I notice my anxiety and overwhelm levels incrementally shit upwards along with it. Once it’s cleared, I feel calm again.
But to be honest, I often avoid tackling the clutter because I don’t want to waste the time, or it simply feels overwhelming. I’m not the absolute tidiest, but I am also one that hides the clutter away to deal with it another day. My clutter isn’t so obvious – hidden out of sight as an avoidance tactic. Because it’s out of sight, I can too easily allow myself to ignore it. Packed shelves, stuffed drawers, and disorganized storage bins are my clutter piles. But once I do dive in, I inevitably always feel so much better.
Why We Cling to Clutter – The Fear of Loss
As I’ve been deep cleaning the attic and drawers, I’ve realized how much old crap I hung on to – ‘clung’ might even be appropriate – out of fear. Fear that I would forget the memory. Fear that I would somehow lose or miss out on something. Lose a part of me perhaps. Miss out on something beautiful or helpful.
It’s not always abundantly clear what it is that causes us to hold on to things way beyond the point of them actually providing value – if they ever did at all. Did I really need to hang on to those old-school physical maps from every single city I visited in Europe during study abroad?? How about that cheap beaded bracelet from high school… that’s falling apart?
But I’ve realized that the holding on and clinging stems from a mentality of scarcity and lack. A fear of never having enough, or not ever having more. It’s a mentality of limitation. And the most important thing to realize that holding on holds us back.
In the past I really did have a hard time throwing stuff out. This time I was methodical yet ruthless. I kept the minimum to preserve memories in a scrapbook. I held on to things of legitimate value, like the missing strand of pearls my Nana gave me many years ago. The rest – I tossed or put in piles to donate.
The Cathartic Release and Expansion of Clearing out and Letting Go
The act of clearing out the old has been extremely cathartic on an energetic level. I’ve been releasing years of physical clutter and junk and I feel lighter and cleaner internally.
I think one reason we hang on to physical stuff is because we fear emptiness. We fill up our lives with things to soothe, comfort, or make us feel better in some way shape or form. This is true for not just for physical belongings, but also food, alcohol, and even our schedules.
But the truth is, once we let go and clear out the old stuff, the old clutter, the old energy – we open up space to allow in something new. If we cling too tightly to the past, we block ourselves from experiencing something new, from having something better.
Letting go opens us back up to possibility. Just like parents have to create space in their lives to bring a new little human into the world, we have to create space to allow possibility into our lives.
The possibility of a new relationship (yup I found pictures and an old birthday card from my ex!). The possibility of a new job or career (are you holding on to a job or career you hate?). The possibility of abundance (when’s the last time you checked the status of your closet? drawers? computer files?).
The interesting thing about clearing out and letting go is that it actually expands us energetically for something even better. Letting go of the old is an act of trust and a signal to the universe that you are ready to receive something even better.
When we hold on, it’s also a sign that we do not trust. It’s a sign that we don’t trust the universe to support us and bring us exactly what we need. It’s also a sign that we don’t trust ourselves.
Developing trust is a practice and it creates an energetic shift within that allows us to expand in order to receive. When we trust that there is always enough – more than enough – to support us and all of our desires, we have no problem letting go and moving forward.
Questions to ask yourself regarding ‘things’ in your life
So if you are holding on to something – whether it be physical clutter, memorabilia, clothing, or even an old relationship, consider what purpose that thing is serving you. Is it for your highest good? Is it lifting you up or dragging you down?
As I started going through my belongings from the past, I realized that I was subconsciously putting them into three buckets:
- Is it legitimately useful?
- Does it bring me joy? (Marie Kondo style)
- Does it make me feel abundant?
Useful. Joyful. Abundant. My new mantra for tidying up and clearing out the clutter!
And on reflection – that’s a pretty good mantra for life! 🙂
So, how have you been handling all that 2020 has thrown at us?
I know these times are challenging, and if you ask me, it doesn’t look like things will be going ‘back to normal’ anytime soon, most likely – never. I don’t think things will ever look the same again, but that doesn’t have to be a bad thing. While it won’t be easy, I believe that through support and collaboration, we can create something so much better.
If you would like support staying grounded during these times of uncertainty, chaos and crisis, and you would like to explore what may be possible for you going forward – the possibility of using this crucible as a catalyst into transformation and a whole new way of being, email me at firstname.lastname@example.org to set up your Free Breakthrough call so we can get clear about where you are and figure out the steps you can take to activate healing and abundance so you can thrive, no matter what!
Onward and upward in light and love, Amanda xx