Hey warriors, it’s time to clean. Yep, clean. But I’m not talking about dusting or window washing. This cleaning has to do with your environment: What have you allowed into your space that it’s time to get rid of? What knickknacks and gadgets are cluttering your space? Which relationships are pulling you down rather than lifting you up? Where can you clean up your schedule so your priorities are the focus of your days?

Everything we look at, everything we listen to, everyone we come into contact with influences us. Be discerning. Consciously choose what and who you are letting into your life. Here are some ways you can do that:

Computer: I could write a blog post just on computers. For today I will focus on two fronts: Your apps and your social media accounts. First, take a moment to look at the people you follow on your social media accounts, especially FacebookEvery single post you see, even those you don’t read, influences you. Yes, your brain is that good. You know how you know you’re aware of the posts you’re not even reading? Ask yourself why you didn’t read it? Because you got a sense of what it was about. That “sense” is more complete than you realize and is stored in your subconcious. So get picky. Unfriend or unfollow anyone who posts things you find offensive, belittling, or negative. It doesn’t matter if it’s your next door neighbor or your long-lost cousin. If someone is saying or posting something you don’t agree with or that offends you, why are you tolerating it? Are you more concerned with what they think that with what their post makes you think? Get really clear with the decisions you’re making and how it’s affecting your life. On that topic, lets look at the apps you have on your phone. Which ones are time sucks? Which ones are helpful? Which ones do you use every day? I’ve taken my biggest time sucks off of my phone (Facebook, Twitter, Amazon, and Hopper). I have my notifications turned off for all apps except for texts and the telephone. Every time the phone bings or beeps a section of our brain is alerted and we are pulled off task. Don’t tell yourself that you don’t notice the “dings”. You might not consciously but it’s the same as the Facebook posts; your brain is paying attention. Turn them off and protect your space.

Closets & Cabinets: What do you have in your clothes closets? Your pantry? Your hall closets? Borrow my “clear the clutter” tool: when I hear myself say either “What if….” or “maybe some day….” I know it’s time to toss it in the donation bag. Try it in any room of your house. Are you saving an extra set of sheets because “maybe one day….you’ll suddenly like purple”? Or, do you have three jars of pickled beets because “what if….you make that recipe again”? How about that shirt you’re saving because “maybe one day….you’ll find the right pair of pants to wear with it. Get rid of it. And don’t get me started on the kitchen. You don’t need more than one can opener, set of measuring spoons, or soup ladles. Choose your favorite and pass the rest along.  All of the extra things we hold on to creates physical clutter which creates mental clutter.

Calendar: What has snuck on to your schedule? Which responsibilities did you sign up for over this past year? Why? Think of what you’re doing and why it matters? How do you feel afterwards? How important is it for others to know that you’re doing what you do? So many moms give, give, and give before taking care of themselves. The result often shows up as a bitter, resentful, strung out mom who’s reaching for the wine earlier and earlier each night. Sign up for what fills you up, not what empties you out.

Contacts: Who do you surround yourself with? Who’s voices do you hear daily? Do they uplift you? Support you? Encourage you? How do you feel after you’re around them? Be discerning here too. You are an adult and so you always have a choice as to who is in your life. My last two blog posts were about letting go of worrying what other people think so that you could be you and live your life. If the people with whom you regularly communicate are not on “your team”, why do you keep communicating with them? Really, why? Choose who you surround yourself with. The greatest determiner of our overall happiness is the quality of our closest relationships. Having a confidant, a “safe container” for our emotions and our inner warrior thoughts is crucial for our mental and thus, physical health. If you have one or two people who you can call when you’re curled up on the floor crying, you have enough. Who are the extras that we keep around? And why? Are we “shoulding” on our relationships? I “should” call her every day because she’s my sister. I “should” invite her to lunch because she’s my mother-in-law. Really? Where do you fit into that equation? Your mental and physical health are the average of the five people with who you surround yourself. If you surround yourself with complainers, you will complain. If you surround yourself with people who are negative, you will focus on the negative aspects of your days. Choose who you call. Choose who you text. Choose who’s emails you return.

Take responsibility for your space. If something is toxic, degrading, or disempowering, don’t allow it into your physical or mental space.

 

influence, CLEAR CLUTTER, MARIE KONDO, MINIMALISM, MINDFUL LIVING