Learning New Ways of Feeling Good

The Christmas holidays are an interesting part of the year for me. Because I spend most of the year helping people let go of the things that no longer matter to them, I lose my appetite to acquire lots of things. So I asked people close to me to donate money to a charity I like. That way I'm receiving something and I'm actually giving. I found the feeling of joy lasts longer from giving. Plus my friends get to enjoy giving to me and to a charity.

I've spoken with some really wealthy people and they told me their favorite feeling was to give to charities and people in need. They said it was more a satisfying feeling than being wealthy.

I think when I work with people, part of the dilemma they are feeling is that they don't want to let go of anything because they feel a strong need to have things. We're taught to measure our wealth by what we own and have in our life. We're told that early on in life that getting things will make us happy. But in my job, I've seen many people with a lot of things, more than they can possibly use, and they aren't happy. By happy I mean generally content and often feeling a peace of mind.

Initially letting go of needing to get or have things to be happy is a hard habit to break. But I found when working with clients that there's the initial resistance, and then an opening up happens. They see that a lot of what they own is actually in the way of their being happy. That's why I encourage people to start the process of clutter busting and see what happens. Plus you can take what you no longer want and give it to a charity. That's an experience my clients really enjoy. Or you can put furniture or electronics out on the curb. You'll come out there later and see that it's gone and that feels good too.