Taking care of the outer clutter, takes care of the inner clutter

One of my blog readers sent me a question asking how to transcend emotional clutter instead of trying to control it via the environment. She wrote saying that she feels judgemental and is easily distracted by others emotional clutter. She was thinking that she stays organized as a way to manage her own inner clutter.

It helps to recognize that there are a lot of distractions out there in the world. Our attention easily gets pulled to things that are entrancing in the moment. We can be especially susceptible to them when we feel overwhelmed in certain areas of our life. We get a temporary relief by getting lost in things that aren't important to us. There's a underlying feeling, "Oh, thank God, I can be involved with this instead." It's not a bad thing. We are built to feel better. We're not built to suffer. But then we get entangled and attached to the distractions, and this adds to the confusion and pain. It makes things worse.

Clutter Busting your living space helps with the overwhelmed part of our lives. By noticing and letting go of things that are no longer a part of our life, we create more open space in our home. Open space induces a feeling of peace. We feel less inclined to fill our life with distractions. Distractions start to feel uncomfortable to us. We feel more relief in maintaining the peace of mind.

When I come to clutter bust someone's living space, I start with the clutter on the floors, counters, in files and closets, any place that feels uncomfortable to be. The presence of this stuff adds to the inner clutter. The chaos is contagious. It spreads from your home to your mind. It might have originally started in your mind and spread to your home or particular situations in your life. But I find it's harder to start looking for inner clutter. Removing the outer clutter begins to reduce the inner clutter. The rambunctious, spinning mind slows down. You begin to have more inner space. The feeling of awareness becomes more dominant. This is being aware of you, and your life, and the things in your life, without being tangled up in judgement of yourself and others.

The more you weed the garden of your living space, the more you get used to feeling better this way. It's building a new habit.