03 Oct The True Cost of Clutter
You may think the only ‘cost’ of your cluttered garage is that you have to park in the driveway.
Or that the only price you’re paying for keeping those mountains of paper around your office is the occasional “where the heck is that darn thing?” panic moment…but the true cost of your clutter would probably shock you if you took time to figure it out!
It ranges from just plain pricey to replace the stuff you can’t find, to painfully costly for missing opportunities for advancement and generating more revenue, to downright devastating, affecting your love life and sexual intimacy. Think I’m crazy? Not at all – let me prove it to you….
While it might seem like a simple (albeit unpleasant) task to tally up the expense of being disorganized: rebuying lost or misplaced items, gas, wear and tear and time to and from the store, the ‘opportunity cost’ of missed deadlines, late fees, the expense of disposal of items after they have expired or lost their value, etc., I’d bet you haven’t ever considered the financial toll that emotional and mental clutter exact on your health and well-being.
If you begin to reckon the tangible and intangible cost of: lost or damaged relationships, low self-esteem, anxiety, frustration, depression, overwhelm, inability to focus, procrastination, the disappointment of peers, colleagues and loved ones, the mentally taxing aspect of resentment and self-loathing, shame and embarrassment and the toll and often irreparable damage that stress can take on your body and your health. Then factor in lack of joy, lower libido, bitterness, cynicism and pessimism, the list goes on…and then multiply this cost by weeks, months, years, it becomes crystal clear that avoidance of dealing with clutter is just plain expensive on every level.
The Symptom, NOT the Problem
If you followed the energy pathway, you’d soon realize that clutter and chaos actually start with your innermost thoughts and only then end up on your desk, your floor, your file cabinet, your closet… dragging you down, holding you back and blocking you from receiving what you want and deserve.
Clutter is just a symptom of the true root issues, and getting to and releasing the underlying cause alleviates the chaotic symptom faster than you can imagine.
So, what would it be like with all that pain and frustration gone? Well, for starters, you’d enjoy an increased passion for life in general, a heightened ability to stay on task and motivated—even for projects that are not that fun, and the thrill of actually getting long-procrastinated organizing tasks COMPLETELY DONE. Add to that list better communication with colleagues, bosses, spouses and children, a deeper connection with self, family, workplace and spiritual community and a feeling of deep inner peace that is genuine and lasting.
Does that mean you will never again experience clutter? Of course not, but you will have a powerful tool added to your toolbox that you never had before: how to recognize and deal with clutter at its root, before it takes over and begins the insidious erosion of your ability to focus and deal with the issue.
I know that the thought of taking a deep look ‘under the hood’ might seem daunting, but it is worth the time, effort and energy. I promise.
“Seeing my hot spots dwindle down has been amazing, but going through and actually doing it was not as hard as I thought it was going to be. It seems once you start to be honest with yourself and why you let things get to the state they are, it is quite liberating. I can now walk in a room and think “Wow! If someone popped in, I will not be panicking, I can let them in.” No more shame on how I had things in the house.” D.G., Ontario, CA
Challenging Your Thoughts
Here are a few of the questions that it might be valuable to ask yourself:
- Why have I been setting the bar so low for myself?
- I used to be so organized! What happened?
- Grief, loneliness, rebelliousness, rage, resentment. How are these toxic thoughts messing me up? (literally!)
- Am I ready to accept that it’s what’s UNDER the clutter, not the mess itself that matters…. or do I need the clutter to excuse myself?
- Do I recognize that flow is not a ‘set it and forget it’ task– like eating well or upholding a yoga practice, it’s a habit to maintain?
- What exactly IS overwhelm and how does it relate to starting and maintaining my organizing project?
- How will I recognize trigger emotions and what will I do about them when they come up in the future?
“These exercises have slapped me awake again and put me back on track. I’m thinking clearer, my creativity is back, I’m taking time to recharge (even if I just sit alone for 5 minutes, clear my mind and breathe). I’m journaling my frustrations instead of bottling them up inside. I’ve gotten back to my writing as well. Finding this group has saved me in so many ways I can’t thank you enough, Jessica.” ~Nora Grudis, writer, NorasNotes.org
“I made the life-changing discovery that the clutter and chaos around my house and office at work are symptoms of the emotional and mental clutter between my ears. Sitting down to discover what those emotions were, the cause of them and then to deal with them was truly life changing. I had feelings of bitterness, anger, hurt, abandonment, failure, unworthiness, rebellion and pain clogging my life and my surroundings. Getting through the emotional hurdle allowed me to have the strength to want to do something about my surroundings. My counters are now once again clutter free and my bedroom feels comforting and restful instead of a place of shame and guilt.” Sara Blackburn, Operations Manager
If any of this resonates for you, I would be happy to offer you a complimentary strategy session via Skype or Zoom. I look forward to watching the transformation blossom in you from the inside out.
Remember, I am on your team!
..· ´¨¨)) -:¦:-
((¸¸.·´ ..·´ Jessica -:¦:-
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