Sometimes the hardest thing you will ever need to do is to let go…
I have lived a life of clutter, of clinging on, of holding onto things that are no longer important. I’ve been attached to physical items for much longer than they were fruitful, and I’ve spent time in my life living in the past. How long have we lived amongst things that have outlived their value, or people and relationships that have become toxic, or stayed connected to past events that no longer benefit us, or remained within groups and communities that no longer make us happy?
A few years ago it became very popular to embrace minimalism, to clear out your clutter, to live with fewer material possessions. Books were published helping us declutter, to purge the objects that no longer satisfied us, and remove the distractions that stopped us being happy.
Back in 2014 Marie Kondo released her book: The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying: A simple, effective way to banish clutter forever, and offered a solution. She told us to ask ourselves when looking at the things that surround us, “Does this object spark joy?”
Surely, this question is one we should ask ourselves in most aspects of life. There will always be things we have to do that don’t make us happy or spark joy, we have to work for a living, and we cannot remove all the negative or problems from our lives. But when there are things we can change we should create as much joy in our lives as we can. I don’t want to live my life missing out on happiness, fun, and joy.
Oprah Winfrey explained, “I define joy as a sustained sense of well-being and internal peace – a connection to what matters.”
What matters to you?
I am moving forward after years of severe depression and moments of psychosis, and allowing myself to let go. I am slowly progressing through my home removing things that no longer hold emotional value and if they don’t spark joy, they will go. I am re-evaluating, working out what makes me happy and what doesn’t. There are things that are important to me, yet they have brought me great sadness rather than the joy they should. Sometimes, letting go means releasing things that were once important – if they still are, you’ll find them again. I’m going back to basics in many ways, in an attempt to remove the negativity in my life and replace it with positivity and joy.
I’m learning to let go.
Have you ever ditched something from your life which has made you infinitely happier?
How easy do you find letting go?
Going backpacking taught me not to hold onto stuff. (also a childhood of never being able to as having to move continually). Now if I am not sure if I want to hold onto something I put it in the loft for 6 months, if I don’t think of it, I bin it (or give it away). The one exception to this is teddy bears – I have a house full, I struggle to part with! LOL
I can’t abide mess or clutter, messes with my head. I tolerate it for a while and then have to blitz it.
I’ve held on to so much clutter I need to let it go, and the same with my head!
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We discovered Marie Kondo a couple of months ago and as a result have spent a month decluttering our house and organising everything that survived the cull. It’s been very liberating and we have moved on to my mother in laws house which hasn’t been decluttering for over 40 years.
I’ve seen your journey with it and it’s very inspiring, Pauline! I’m still working on the house, but I’ve done a lot with decluttering my mental health over the last few years and that’s invaluable. I’ll be slowly working through the house now. I know we’ll come to Dad’s house one day, but that scares me as he’s a major hoarder, it’ll take a very long time. My own home seems insurmountable sometimes too, but I’ll get there!