Purging Your Stuff

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Lighten up!

We are overflowing with stuff in every part of our lives. It comes in many forms. It is in our e-mail inboxes, in our closets--all the way out of our houses and even into our cars. It's no wonder we can't concentrate. The inability to PURGE what we no longer need from our lives is causing us problems. We feel overwhelmed and sluggish and this chaos stifles our creative, productive energy. Mastering the "art" of purging your stuff happens when you understand the benefits of letting it go. Then you just need the tools to accomplish the task.

Why Am I Keeping the Stuff?
One of the most important aspects of purging chaos and clutter from your life is to learn to understand the reasons you are keeping so much stuff. People keep stuff for many different reasons. The emotional attachments make it mentally draining to sort through. Other times we keep too much stuff because we think it makes us feel more secure. In reality, it keeps our minds clogged and our pocketbooks empty. Understand the reasons you make purchases and the reasons you collect. Recognizing and understanding the behavior will prevent you from collecting more stuff after you have finally started purging.

Sorting And Purging: The More the Merrier
One of the reasons we can't purge our belongings is because of their emotional ties. So be prepared by having someone do it with you, if possible--a professional organizer is best. This person will help you by nudging you to work efficiently and effectively. If you don't want to hire a professional organizer, then try to tackle one room at a time with a close friend or relative. Treat them to dinner as a thank you or share garage sale proceeds with them as an incentive.

The Choices
When you purge your stuff you have several choices on how you will get rid of it. You will throw it away, give it away, sell it, or put it elsewhere to store it. Try to remember the golden question to continue asking yourself during the purging process: Do I use it? The answer to that question is simple. Notice, it is present tense. If you used the item last year or you are waiting to use it at the right time (ex: smaller-sized clothes) then you are not using it. Again, tough choices sometimes require the help of a professional organizer.

The Benefits
What will you get from all your hard work? What are the benefits of purging your stuff? This is what most people really want to know before they decide to tackle any task. You will gain space--by ridding yourself of clutter, you will create a life free of constant chaos. You will gain time--to do the things you love. You will not be searching for the same items over and over again--because now you can create a specific place for them. You will be more punctual to appointments because you will make clothes choices from a closet where the wardrobe is up-to-date and fits your body--today. Not when you lose ten more pounds. You will gain peace--when you rid yourself of all that is cluttering your life, you provide the cosmic space for new and exciting circumstances to occur. This is because the act of organizing and purging allows you the ability to access your inner yearnings once again because they aren't buried--literally.

Who ever knew that purging your stuff could be so beneficial! I encourage you to keep excavating--keep searching for meaning in your life as you keep practicing the art of purging your stuff.

Sheri McConnell is the President of the National Association of Women Writers (http://www.NAWW.org). She helps women writers and entrepreneurs discover, create, and profit from their intellectual knowledge! Free reports for writers available with subscription to NAWW Weekly. Sheri lives in San Antonio, Texas with her husband Seth and their four children. Contact her at naww@onebox.com or her toll free number at 866-821-5829.

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