No Room for Blame

I've been encouraging my clients to let go of the clutter of blame. Often times clients will blame themselves for their clutter situation. But I think when we are hard on ourselves we creates bruises. And the crazy part is blaming rarely creates any kind of change. There are situations in life that are hard, but blame makes them at least 80% harder. Blame creates a heavy emotional weight which is clutter because it doesn't serve anyone.

I was working with a client in her family room. There were DVDs, CDs, books, magazines and papers piled around the room. The situation was discouraging for her. She said, "I shouldn't have let it go this bad. If I'd only kept up with this then I wouldn't have to be dealing with all this crap. I don't why I can't just take care of all this stuff." The effects of her words made her weak. It was like she was in a punching match with herself.

I said, "Let's start with what you just said to yourself." I told her how diminished it made her. It was like she was a healthy person who instantly got the flu. I said we get so used to being hard on ourselves that we don't even question if it's helpful. It feels like the thing to do, which is why it's worth noticing the effects. My client was already feeling worn down from the presence of the clutter. Her harshness made her much more wasted.

I suggested some compassion for the situation. Sure, it sucks to see a room full of stuff that needs your attention when you're already feeling tired. But it's a lot easier to go, "Okay, this is a mess, but I'd like to take care of it." And then proceeding. She let out a breath and we began.