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Ep. 118 Declutter these Four Areas in Your Life

by Claudine Sweeney
March 3rd 2022

Feeling drained? Overwhelmed? Distracted? It might just be time to do a little decluttering. But today, what we're talking about, goes even beyond tidying up your environment. Tune in to learn tips... More

This is episode 1 18 declutter these four essential areas in your life. You're listening to the rise up and Shine podcast with Claudine and Ashley as an empty nester and a mom with young kids. We have both shared very similar and very real struggles from chaos to coaches. We now help other women live an authentic and meaningful life. So tune in weekly for girl talk and tips on how you too can rise up and let your light shine bright. This is the rise up and Shine podcast. Yeah, welcome back everyone to another episode here. Well today we are going to be talking about decluttering inside and out both. So question for our listeners today, if you happen to be feeling very tired, a bit fatigued, stressed, overwhelmed, distracted, restless, it might be time to do a little decluttering Now what we're actually going to be talking about is we are going to be focusing on four key areas of our life.

That is really crucial to do some decluttering. Now I don't know about you, Claudine and our listeners, but for me I would always think of decluttering my home or perhaps my car for our environment. Right? All the piles as you could see in my lovely studio here. I have a couple piles and there's definitely one junk counter that has tons of piles that I try to go through and two days later it's just a pile of mail and random knickknacks and screws that have no place to go because I always thought everything has its own home, right? That's what we hear. Everything has its home. We try to tell our Children that should have its own home. But there are some things that I don't know what home it belongs in its because it probably doesn't have a home. It needs to be declared, right? But what happens is we tend to collect now we do this in many areas of our life, just not our environment and the four topics we're going to focus on our home, our environment, our mind, and our heart and our schedule.

And I like this definition of decluttering. It's to remove unnecessary items from my favorite part, an overcrowded place. I like that part and overcrowded place. Don't your minds get overcrowded house gets overcrowded, schedule gets overcrowded and our heart gets overcrowded and we may not be fully aware, but we're going to talk about that today. Well, it's interesting because for me, when I think about declutter I to think about my home and we've just moved into our home. I think it's been about seven months and believe it or not, I already have a junk drawer. It's already, but it's a big yeah, it's like that's why I know I'm human. It's where I throw everything in. When I quote unquote, don't have time, which is a whole nother topic because really I do have time, but it's the chore I don't want to do at the moment, everything just goes in that drawer, right? And then when you close it, you don't see it and no one knows that there's complete chaos and disorder in that one drawer.

But today we're talking about these other areas because we believe that in addition to physical decluttering God wants us to declutter these other areas of our life. So we can really pay attention to what matters most. We can fully enjoy peace and love and joy and freedom and rise up and shine. It's really hard to rise up and shine when you're living in chaos or clutter or there's too much because it really does suck your energy, right? Clutter is a stuck. It's another heavy energy, right? And can prevent you from creating the life you choose the life you want, the life you desire when we have too much clutter. So that's why it's important to talk about. And today we're going to talk about those four areas. So actually, let's talk about our homes with clutter. I mean, there's a reason people have so much stuff, right? I was just reading a statistic about storage units. It's crazy how much people how much stuff people have that. They can't even fit into their very large homes by standards from 50 years ago, the size of our homes have almost doubled and now we still have to get storage units to store all the stuff that won't store in our homes, our garages and now we have to go, yes, now we have to go storm elsewhere.

It's crazy when I think about it. Really crazy. So people obviously are buying a lot of stuff in our minds and our brains are being bombarded by media by social media as well. You know, you see what everyone has on social media and all of a sudden you're like, I need that too. They have it, I want it. But marketing firms and all these advertisers, they want you to buy their stuff right, consume, consume, consume. And so now we have so much stuff, we don't even know what to do with our stuff and I'll go back to that definition. A lot of it is unnecessary, right? Why do we have all this stuff and granted, especially with kids? Right. I mean a lot of things are gifts or things that we hold on to, but I like this other quote that says by barbara Hemphill, if I'm pronouncing that correctly, clutter is nothing more than postponed decisions and that really rings true for us because, and I'm seeing it with my kids, we collect, we collect things and think, well I might use it one day or maybe I'll lose that £10 of Covid, wait and I'll be able to fit into this again and it's only been about a year and a half or two later or maybe, you know, we keep holding on to things and really it's unnecessary and it stresses us out.

It really is overwhelming, right? When we have just clutter everywhere and it's really takes a toll on our mental health and we don't always stop to think about that. Yeah, yeah. And and we have to examine the reasons why we consume and purchase and buy so much. Is it, are we trying to fill a hole in our heart? Is there a loss we're feeling or a self worth issue? What is it we're feeling that we're trying to numb out by buying or Phil by buying stuff. I mean, how many pairs of shoes do you really, really need? Like I'm not a shoe person, but I know a lot of women are about coffee mugs and how many coffee mugs do you need? Don't you drink out of one mug per day. It's so funny, but it's funny. But we sometimes I actually go, sometimes I have an AM coffee mug and A PM coffee mug. Oh gosh, that's so funny because I leave my mug on the counter every day and I'm like, don't touch this. I tell my husband don't touch this, I might have tea later and he's like, okay, but if you notice mine have a lot of quotes, I'm a very sentimental person.

And so if somebody gave me one, it's really, this is kind of a little, you know, insight into my mind is sentimental. If someone gave me this and I'm feeling, oh, I'm missing them or I love this quote. I'm just really feeling this quote today. Then I'm going to use that one and again I change it throughout the day. And that could be a reason, sentiment can be a reason that it's hard to give up something or let go of something. Well, we just recently moved and our stuff, most of our stuff had been in storage because we're moving around a lot for about eight years and I remember telling some friends before we moved, oh yeah, I'm a minimalist and I kept telling people I'm a minimalist. My husband kept looking at me oddly and I didn't understand because I'm like, no, really, I'm a minimalist. Well, meanwhile we have moved into our I think rather large home and our two car garage is still half full from top to bottom with stuff. And my husband walked out one day and goes whatever made you think you were a minimalist. I'm like, I guess I want to be one. I just want to be one. But but the truth of it is what's left in there is all the sentimental stuff.

It's all my kids drawings from when they were little and pictures when they were little and you know, their artwork, all of that. Yes. And what do you do with that? But I came up with a great idea. This is what I'm going to do in my free time. I'm going to take pictures of all their artwork and make photo books with them. And if I can remember anything attached to it like when they did it or when they gave it to me, I'm going to put that underneath. So then I still have the pictures, I still have the representation. I have the sentiment right behind it in A tiny 8" by 8" book. So that's what I'm going to start doing with all my sentimental stuff, practical one. That's for your, for your environment by your home and your car. And you know, we keep I keep a lot of things in my car as well, coupons and Travel brochures and I pick something up and I stick it on. I have like 20 bed bath and beyond coupons on the side of my car. AM I the only one who does that? No, but I do have yours because it's an address for a short time there and I still have some of your Yes.

Well I would keep them in my car just in case I stopped there and of course I haven't even shopped there in years. So it's kind of funny that I'm collecting coupons from a place that I don't frequent honestly. But and then is it something that you're really going to use often? Is it is it unnecessary or is it necessary? So those are good questions to ask the other another practical which I did when when it comes to your environment when we lived in Tennessee. We had we had a large home in that place as well. And I made a deal with myself that if I bought anything I had to remove I like item. So if I bought a blouse, I had to remove a blouse. If I bought a plate, I had to remove a plate and that actually worked great for two years. We actually went back home when we went, moved back two years later to California. We actually had a slightly smaller moving truck. So that worked out because I got really fearful that I was going to fill this house with stuff that I didn't really need again. And um so that was the little deal I made myself and it was really great because I had to check my heart if I wanted to buy a new shirt.

I think am I ready to let go of something else? Is this have more value to me than something I already have. And honestly a lot of times the answer was no. And so it really was a hard check to say, do I even I have all these things already value or do I want to get rid of one of them. And the answer usually was no, I don't really like all my clothes. I don't want to get rid of anything. So it was a great way to manage. Clutter another area that is really crucial to declutter is our minds, our minds are filled with swirling thoughts, things that we can make sense of things that we can't make sense of a lot of to do even a lot of limiting or toxic thoughts, things that really don't service in our lives and thoughts that don't help us rise up and shine right in our lives. How many thoughts daily do we have that don't service right. That bring us down, that weigh us down, that keep us from living our best lives, right?

I know we did a whole episode on the mean girl in our head. I think it was episode nine. I don't know offhand like you you're so good at memorizing that, but we have so many thoughts every day. And another thing I've had to do that's really been helpful is sometimes in the morning just put them all down on paper, like I have so many to do. So I think like, I think I do right even more time at the house and the clutter around the house, I walk around and it's like my house speaks to me, my plants are like, you need to water me and I need a new pot because I've outgrown this one and it's like, it doesn't matter where I go. It's constant. There's thoughts in my head, There's to do so if I just sit and do some people call it a brain dump or a brain download. Just write everything down, get it out of my head and onto paper. It just really frees up that space and then you can kind of cross out OK, I really don't need to think this or do this, you know, and especially the negative critical thoughts like I don't need those in my head or worries, right, things that we're worried about that never happened and usually never happened, right, pray about it.

Yeah. Isn't that a great concept? Let's pray, let's pray. Even things like well she didn't call me back and so maybe you're kind of sitting and stewing on that and what could have happened and kind of creating a story, a lot of the things that clutter our minds are also stories that essentially we're making up and that is what's really important because that keeps us so stuck and that alone even is draining, physically, mentally, emotionally and physically draining on us. Uh and so when we're talking about decluttering our mind is such a crucial place to do that as well, and like you said, writing things down, because a lot of times we can't make sense, it's just a big jumbled mess, remember scratching on a piece of paper with a pen, like just drawing all these crazy lines I said, this is what's going on in my hair and it's very true, it's I can't pick one, I don't I don't know what to focus on first, I don't know what to do, I don't and we feel so stuck, but writing it down and getting out of your head is so helpful. I mean even scientifically proven that journaling it out or brain dumping it out is will help you be able to problem solve and categorize and you know logically and rationally decide what do I need to focus on and what really can I let go and what's not serving me thoughts, you know, limiting beliefs or even just to do and we Get them all out.

I I think about my phone when I have like 20 or 30 tabs open. My husband taught me this years ago. But if you close it all you can actually save your batteries energy and it's kind of like our thoughts when we start getting rid of decluttering our minds, we all of a sudden have a lot more energy. So it's odd but we really do have physical mental and emotional energy when we declutter our minds. Another area to declutter is our hearts. This is a big one. I mean a lot of us can Mhm many of us can struggle with regret or disappointment, envy, greed. These are things we need to remove from our hearts. They just steal our joy. Yes, Yes, worry like you mentioned right, these things rob us of our joy and energy and energy. Right? So we need to declutter. We need to remove those things to make space for the things that are better and I think it's important to keep in mind, especially if you feel like you're holding on to resentment or bitterness towards hurt that you've experienced any point in your life recently or way past.

It does not mean that like to let go of those feelings does not mean that you're condoning or approving their behavior or their action or their choice. It just frees you up because really they're still going on moving on with their life, but it really frees you up to experience more peace and joy in your life and to declutter that it's really kind of, even in our last episode, the reward will far outweigh the cost. The cost that is, you know, that is costing you the price. That is costing you in your relationships with anybody, your Children and your spouse, your friends coworkers, anybody in your life. And even just in your own well being, the reward will far far outweigh. And that's the point of decluttering. It's really to make room for what's most important for what we truly value. Yeah, what will serve us and get rid of the things that rob and steal and take away. That's why we need to do decluttering. And the last one we want to focus on is our schedule.

I don't know about you, but I can fall into the trap where I used to fall into the trap of saying yes way too often for many different reasons. One because my heart was either to help or my heart was, oh, I want to do this event or schedule this in our planner. Um, or also out of fear, I feel obligated that I need to do this for someone else or say yes to this. I don't want to hurt their feelings or I kind of fear rejection or disapproval. If I say no and saying no is very challenging for some of us. Um, it could be very, it could be such a struggle and, but it's important to also honor our boundaries, boundaries for our schedule for our families and our time and honor that because if we keep saying yes yes yes to everything, another thing that can happen is maybe you are flaky. Maybe you tend to cancel a lot because you end up taking too much on and then you have to go back and say no, I'm sorry, I can't do that after all after you've already committed. That's why I learned many years ago to say, let me just check my schedule and get back to, you know, this is a great tips.

Yes. Let me check with my husband. Let me check my calendar. I don't have it with me. Let me get back to you or call me tomorrow and I'll let you know. So it gave me some time to process. This was a huge one for me. When my kids were young. My schedule was so cluttered. It was go, go go and you said something interesting. You said, you know, we're afraid to say no or we don't want to say no. The truth is every time we say yes to something, we're saying no to something else. Even if that no is just family time or rest or time to have space with God. Hey, there's a good question. Is it okay to plan or schedule your own rest time? Yes, yes, definitely will have a challenge with that. I need to be always giving and serving and that's a whole another podcast. So that's very important and interesting. Okay, yeah, I read a book recently that talked about the sabbath and it was such a good point about having a time to rest and worship in our Western culture. We think that busy equals productive and successful, right?

But that's not the way God looks at it. In fact, on the seventh day he rested and he asked us to rest as well and gave us this gift of a day of rest and yet we don't live that way. At least I didn't. And so de cluttering my schedule was key. I had to remove things so I could spend more time with the things that mattered. My relationship with God, my relationship with my husband, my relationship with my kids. And if we over pack our schedules, then the little times that we're trying to catch, you know, quality time with family or quality time with friends, that is even you know, taking a hit to because we can't really be present because it's like we have this to do or I'm preparing for this or mentally I'm, you know, I know we're doing something right now. But mentally I'm three hours ahead of I need to plan for this and prepare for this that's coming up and yeah, and it's hard for us to be present because we're juggling too much at once and just like what you said, what really helps with decluttering our schedule is take an inventory of what matters most to you, prioritize what is important. Most important saying yes to helping someone out.

That is a wonderful honorable thing to do. But if it's going to be at the sacrifice of something else that's even more important. You know, make sure that your priorities are straight and it takes some time to self reflect, you know what what matters most to me, my family and you know, what do we value? Yeah. When our kids were young and we have four, they're all duds now. But when they were young at one point we put all four into sports and extracurricular activity and we've lost our minds because every saturday we both had to go to different places I took too and he took to, but they were usually in opposite directions and we started losing our sanity, our peace of mind, our joy, it was just not healthy for any of us. So then from that point on we made a decision only two at a time could be in an activity and we alternated because it was just, it was just out of control. So your comment to me on our lunch break earlier today makes sense how you and your husband do not like to do things on saturday. Maybe it's a residual value that Well, the reason we don't, it's so funny about, I don't know, a few months ago, we went to Costco on a saturday.

It was crazy. I mean the lines were long and we're like, what is going on today? And then we realized, oh, it's saturday because we almost never run errands or do anything on the weekends, you know, other than spend time with friends or do things around the house. But that saturday we were out and about and we're like, oh my goodness, this is you know, when you have a 9 to 5 job, this is the time you can do those things. And because our work schedules are so flexible, we don't typically do things on saturday. So probably a combination of the traumas of the early years with the kids and the crowds were like saturday's just, it was very cluttered. So, and again, the purpose of de cluttering is to make room for what matters and what we value and that's why it's so important. It really is hard to rise and shine. I mean, I'm at my worst when my schedule is busy, when my mind is cluttered, when my heart is cluttered when my house is a mess. I'm not at my best. Well we really feel restless. We feel restless, stressed out and just um distracted.

We're not able to focus very well. I know for myself. Yeah, Yeah. And even in Ecclesiastes these 36, it says there is a time to keep and a time to throw out. I love that there's a time to keep and a time to throw out. Well that concludes our episode today on decluttering. This was an awesome episode. I wish I knew these things much earlier into motherhood. But you guys, if there is anything in your own life that you are really desiring to do some decluttering and you just need a little bit of help, you don't know where to start. You just feel stuck then please reach out to us. Okay, if you are a mom, a young mom, stay at home mom, please check me out Ashley at mind over chaos dot com. That's mind over chaos dot com. Or if you are an empty nester and you want to get in touch with Claudine and find out more. Try to get some help in your own life. Check her out at her website which is Claudine Sweeney dot com, but we are here for you and on our website you can schedule a free, that's complimentary free.

That's a good word, right? We love it. Free call. Okay. Discovery call, where we will talk with you, find out where you are, how things are going, what areas you want to see growth, what areas you need to do some decluttering and we would love to get in touch with you during a Discovery call. So check us out over there. Well that concludes today. So thank you again for tuning in. We are so appreciative of our listeners and if you haven't already, please take a second to hit that subscribe button. And also if you have another minute, please leave a review. A review really helps this podcast reach more women out there who are looking for these tips and encouragement for their own life. So we will catch you next week. Everybody take care. Alright everyone, thank you for joining in on our conversation today here on the rice I've been shined podcast. If you haven't already, please take a second to hit that subscribe button so you never miss an episode and while you're at it share this episode with a friend who you know it can bless today if you want to visit us as well on our websites, you can catch Claudine over at Claudine Sweeney dot com and Ashley at mind over chaos dot com.

Our links are in the description. We also have some free resources there for you as well. So remember ladies, no matter what you are facing in life, it is never too late to rise up and shine and live your best life. Mhm.

Ep. 118 Declutter these Four Areas in Your Life
Ep. 118 Declutter these Four Areas in Your Life
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