Underneath all the clutter is a desire for tenderness. We want to be treated with kindness. There's a deep need for that gentle openness. But at the same time there's fear that the world is an unsafe place. If we stay open, we may get hurt. Clutter can feel like a protective insulation. "I'm safe under all these things." It creates what seems like a safe distance between us and the rest of the world. We want to run in two different directions, towards love and fear, at the same time and it's exhausting and frustrating.
My client a few days ago was fragile amidst the musty boxes of stuff in her basement. She seemed brittle. It felt like she'd been hiding behind all these things for years and now the shell was being removed and she was scared. I felt like it was the living behind the things that had made her so fearful and shaky. It was like a person who was scared of being injured, so she never exercised, and her body was atrophying.
So I encouraged her. I told my client that she looked like she was coming back to life. There was light in her face and eyes. I said there's mightiness in being open and delicate. We're so used to thinking that the only vitality is in the power of being and owning things, but the wattage feels higher in people's basic sensitivity. People are amazing when they are their unencumbered natural selves. It's much more alluring than the illusion of having it all together.