Spring is here (though perhaps we should call it summer, considering these balmy temps)!
Now is the time to take my amateur handywoman-self to the nearest home improvement store. I’m snatching up storage bins, shelving units, and basic hardware. It’s time for spring cleaning. For weekend home projects. For the decluttering of our very busy space.
I’ve finally, with the help of my wonderful mother-in-law, taken on a project that has been asking for my attention for months. We are cleaning up and cleaning out the garage. We have used the first lazy days of Spring Break to get busy sweeping, trashing, donating and sprucing-up a multitude of items ranging from old box fans to long-lost playthings to cans of paint dated 2007. It’s amazing just how many things have been hanging around doing nothing, obscured from view. Now, what is staying has found a place on some new shelving units, easy for us all to see and access.
As I find myself breathing easier at the sight of our now neatly organized garage, I feel eager to do some similar re-organization in my own head. I’ve got so many things running through my mind all day, but only some of it is actually important. When I’m searching my mind for the time of the meeting I know I have to attend, but all I keep finding are headlines of articles I want to eventually read or little clips of funny videos I watched, it’s like I’m tripping over cans of paint from 2007 when I’m looking for my car keys! How to inventory all of these thoughts? How to distinguish the trash from the good, and how to build a shelving unit for all that’s worth keeping?
These aren’t really rhetorical questions, friends. Happy to hear your best ideas. In doing some Spring cleaning this week, I found a tool I attempted to use in the past but never quite followed through. It seems worth of another attempt.
I made a chart to be filled out during a short period of reflection at the end of each day. It was structured like this:
Along the top, with a column beneath, are the following categories: “for my body” “for my spirit” “for my mind” “for my spouse” “for my kids” “for my neighbors”
Each day, I would jot down even one small thing that I managed to do in each of those areas. I had determined that if only I could service each of those categories on a daily basis, I would have a much clearer and more organized life. I would also, possibly, realize that my mind is more balanced and ordered than I might feel it is. If you can find something to put in each column every day without purposely trying, you are really living in a holistic way.
How would you fill out those categories today? If you would try with me to use this chart for the next week, I would love to hear what it did for you!
Natalia Naman Temesgen is an independent contractor. Contact her at firstname.lastname@example.org.