One of the participants at last Sunday's Clutter Busting workshop brought with her a box of old journals. She said they were over a year old and she never revisited them. I asked her to read one of the journals to herself. She looked tired and emotionally heavy as she read. I told her that she looked like she was in pain.
I said that since the journals were no longer an active, living part of her life, and didn't make her feel good, would she be okay about letting them go. She said she felt resistance, but wasn't sure why.
I said that something can be a helpful part of your life. But then at some point, it isn't anymore. It actually starts to cause harm. It can be hard to let the thing go because of the powerful memories of how valuable it once was. It can feel like you are throwing out something that is essential. But based on your actual experience in the moment, that's not true.
She reflected on her experience and said when she wrote in the journals, they helped her process difficult feelings. But now they just reminded her of old pains. They felt like a, "Bucket full of ick."
She let the journals go. Her face brightened up. She looked free.