It’s been nine years since I started Time + Space Solutions and it’s changed significantly since then. However my core intention hasn’t changed: helping people let go, change and get back into their power. This starts by releasing what no longer is needed, getting back to your natural rhythm and then having true resonance with your inner and outer world. This month I’ll be focusing on how you can release the past and life clutter that gets in the way of you being you!
What does it really mean to let go?
There are different ways to let go. When you hold onto beliefs, ideas, and stories that cause you suffering it looks like tension, stress, anger, resentment, anxiety and overall disconnection. When you won’t let go of belongings that you don’t need anymore you end up with chaos, confusion and a cluttered mind. When we hold on to how things “should” be done, we don’t have enough time to do other things that are important, including taking care of health and well-being.
Holding on means you are stuck in the past and to let go means to be present with what is now. Letting go means you’ve come to terms with what has happened. You can acknowledge that it’s in the past and understand that the power is in the now. Now is where you can create, now is where you are connected to your body, breath and your conscious mind. Letting go means cutting the energetic ties to the past that keep you weighed down, depressed, and stuck.
Decluttering Your Outer World
When you begin to declutter your outer world it allows you to see the inner patterns that created the clutter in the first place. When you let go of belongings in an intentional and conscious way you also let go of the emotional attachments you have to them( old beliefs, thoughts, “shoulds”, guilt, shame and resentments). Once you clear your spaces of what you no longer need and what no longer matches your values and intentions, you can be more present and focus on what you want to create. This doesn’t mean getting rid of most of your belongings and becoming a minimalist. It also doesn’t mean that you have to do it in one round. It took me more than two years to no longer have a junk drawer. It was a process of understanding what was coming in, why I was keeping it and seeing what really mattered. Let’s look at concrete steps on how to get started:
Step 1 – Connect
Get clear on what your values and your intentions are. Make a list of 10 values that are most important to you now and then group them into three main themes. Those three themes will be your anchors for when you need to make decisions. You’ll reference them to see, ok, if commitment is important to me then skipping the gym today doesn’t align with that value.
Next is having a general sense of what your intentions are during this process. Then make a list of what anchors you will use to help you stay focused, grounded and connected when you get distracted, triggered, or overwhelmed. For example, going for a walk, doing a meditation, putting your hand on your heart.
Step 2 – Create
What is it that you want to create in your life? Creating is one of the wonderful gifts of being human. When we set definitive goals we stifle our creativity. Focusing on what you want to create gives you a map to follow that is wide open for life to happen and allow for change. When we focus on creating it allows for ideas, opportunities and possibilities that are way beyond what we originally thought. The values and intentions are your anchor to stay focused and not stray too far away.
Step 3 – Release
Take an inventory of what you have. I always recommend to start with your spaces and keep it simple by starting with one category at a time, ie. clothing, books. Do this by sorting that category on a large cleared surface, make an excel sheet for time and finances and use a journal when you are reflecting on your relationships.
Once you see it all,you are able to gain a lot of insight, awareness and guidance on what needs to change. Now it’s time to let go of what doesn’t match your values, intentions and what you want to create!
This step is probably the biggest one because the insight you gain allows you to see WHY you have so much life clutter. It could be a belief that you can’t let go of something because you might need it one day and understand that the fear is causing havoc in your life. Getting support and guidance from a trauma therapist or coach during this phase is integral to making true change.
Step 4 – Recalibrate
Now it’s time to recalibrate with what’s left and get organized. When it comes to your belongings it means zoning your spaces so that they match your intentions. For example, you want to read more so you move your shelf next to a reading chair and have all your books there instead of having them in multiple places. When it comes to your time,you zone your day for what you are focusing on. For example, having a set time to check emails instead of doing it often and randomly throughout the day, which inevitably wastes time.
Step 5 – Rhythm
Getting into your rhythm means setting boundaries and creating new habits so that you can sustain the changes you’ve made. Where do you need to start saying no? Is it when you go shopping and see something on sale that you don’t need (this helps both financially and with physical clutter)? What habits will you integrate to help keep your spaces organized so that you can focus on what you are creating instead of feeling stressed and overwhelmed? How will you integrate more self care and focus around your wellbeing and overall health?
Decluttering Your Inner World
Sounds a little weird, eh!? The reality is clutter comes in different forms including our minds, hearts and body. If you fill your mind with negative thoughts about yourself it creates clutter and prevents you from seeing your true essence. If you fill your body with food and substances that cause harm then it gets clogged up and doesn’t run smoothly and optimally. You get the picture.
This internal clutter then affects the decisions you make, how you behave and how you feel about yourself. This comes from a combination of how you grew up, your life experiences both in the home and the world around you, cultural viewpoints, trauma, and even political situations. Often people get disconnected from their inner world in order to cope and survive. This causes a weakening of intuition, mind-body connection and being able to act from your true power and with compassion. Let’s look at these parts and how you can let go of what’s clogging you up inside.
Mind, body, spirit, heart
The mind can be our friend or our enemy. If you grew up in a home with little support, lots of blaming and shaming then most likely your mind is not your best friend. If you mostly live in flight or freeze then your thoughts will be negative, filled with fear, hopelessness and doubt. A racing mind cannot connect with the present moment and be the observer. Instead, you are stuck in a tornado of sabotaging thoughts.
When we are lost in our mind, we disconnect from our body. Our bodies tell us what we need and when we don’t pay attention things become imbalanced and illness follows. The body leads us to our spirit by connecting us to our intuition. The physical sensations help us connect to that twitch, pulse, expansion of energy when we feel we need to do something or stay away. It also tells us when and how to fulfill our basic needs like eating and sleeping.
The heart is different from the spirit, it is the place for love, compassion and true healing. When we act from the heart we cause no harm to ourselves or others. In order to reconnect and act from the heart we must clear the resentments, fear, and judgements that stand in the way.
How to declutter your mind, body, spirit and heart
You can go through a similar process of decluttering your inner world using the five steps for decluttering your outer world. Using a journal and sharing with someone is ideal. I also recommend the techniques below to help you embody a deep change, allowing you to release the past and what’s holding you down.
- Thought replacement
This is a helpful tool and can be with repeating affirmations, mantras, and other statements that help you change your beliefs and thoughts. It’s important to pair this with other tools because doing it alone will not change your inner mind. I like to do this when I’m driving, getting ready in the morning or feeling like I need to shake things up. (I even get ridiculous and sing them in a silly way to bring more love and joy)
- EFT tapping
This is a wonderful tool because you can use ready made scripts and videos or do it in the moment. In this technique you are tapping 8 different points while saying statements. These points coincide with acupuncture points that calm your nervous system. Connecting these two together has a deeper effect than just doing affirmations because you are working with your nervous system, a place where trauma is trapped. It’s important to be consistent and do this regularly in order to see the benefits.
Meditation comes in so many forms. I like the ones that involve hypnosis to change my thoughts and that go deep into my subconscious. I also enjoy
doing yoga nidra to have a holistic effect on my mind, body, spirit, heart and internal vibration. Here you use a “I am” statement that can stay the same or change each time you do it. I find this method powerful because you are in a state that allows you to calm your nervous system and “reprogram” your inner mind and at the same time it completely changes your energy in a positive way because you actually feel the shift in all areas doing this technique.
I cannot speak more highly of the importance and positive impact nature has on our overall well-being and ability to stay connected and in alignment. As I write this blog I’m blessed that it is warmer than usual for October and I’m loving the fact that I can write this in the park. Not only am I not distracted by checking my email, I am grounded, breathing in fresh air and feel more connected to my inner knowing to write this blog with ease and speed.
Nature helps us connect to the present moment, clear our minds, connect to our mind, body, spirit and heart. Finding a place to go to regularly is key to finding that inner peace, calm and connectedness.
- Compassion and empathy
Replacing hate, judgment and shame with compassion and empathy is another way that you can declutter your inner world. When you act from compassion you are a better listener, more understanding, can relate to others, feel gratitude and take kind action to stop suffering for yourself and others. Below are some ways to connect deeper with compassion for yourself and others.
Releasing trapped emotions in the body and energy field is another amazing way to let go. Mindfulness techniques are helpful. You can feel the sensation of the emotion in your body when talking about a past situation or when a strong emotion comes up. By breathing into that space you allow it to be there and be released instead of being disconnected and having the emotion stay trapped in your mind, body, spirit and heart.
Another great technique is using the emotion code and body code. You can do this on your own or see an emotion code practitioner. Here you release trapped emotions that are in your magnetic energy field creating a shift in your consciousness and way of being.
It’s important to understand that decluttering your life is a process.It takes time, effort and getting support is a must! When we have lived with old patterns for decades, we can’t expect to change in days or weeks. Let’s say you are focusing on losing weight. You can’t expect it to happen in one week with no support to understand your emotional eating habits, change your diet, exercise and how you feel about yourself. It takes time to address these areas with support and guidance until you can do it on your own. Remember, this doesn’t have to be daunting, it can also be fun, liberating and freeing!