Figure Out Where Energy Is Festering


Today’s big idea is that there are all kinds of areas of your life that may be ready for a re-boot. Your home, your relationships, your diet, your exercise routine, your car, your closet. I mean, phew! It’s a lot. It’s enough to maybe get completely overwhelmed and just stuff that urge to renew down and live with the chaos for a little longer. Well, here’s a way to get yourself into motion. And experience some relief which then frees up some energy that will help you keep going. Here’s a way to get yourself into motion—figure out where energy is festering in your life, and then address that one spot. 

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You know, this is where is either stuff or bad habits are collecting

Like leaves that pile up in the corner of your yard because the wind blows them and then the fence traps them in.  And it’s not just leaves, but also trash, so that it becomes this pile of grossness. That’s what I mean by festering. 

If you can identify the spots where the flow gets stifled and things pile up, then you can just address that one particular area and restore the flow. 

For example–where’s the spot in your house that collects all the random crap? There are several of these spots in mine. The corner of my desk, which is in the living room so a lot of people leave things there. Also, the bench in our entry way, where mail pails up and things that need to be returned to other people and backpacks and hats and gloves accumulate. Also, the ironing board in our closet, which is where we put things we don’t feel like hanging up. And oh man! The kitchen counter. OH THIS ONE DRIVES ME CRAZY because that is the main workspace in the kitchen. 

If you can pick just one of these spots, and figure out a better solution for them, it’s going to ripple throughout the house. 

To truly address these areas, you’re going to have to do more than de-clutter. You’re going to have to figure out a new system. So that’s more cognitive and physical energy than just putting stuff away. BUT the payoff is that the benefits of re-thinking this one area is going to ripple throughout your life.  So it’s worth the effort! AND it’s just one spot. 

Let’s say your entryway, like ours, gathers a heap of stuff. Here are some of the changes I’ve made that have helped keep the energy from coagulating in this spot: Put a small wastebasket where the  mail piles up so you can put any junk mail immediately in the recycling. (I actually started keeping the outdoor recycling bin a few steps from the mailbox, so most of the mail never comes in the house. This makes me sad about all those trees, but hey, recycling.)

We also got a bench with storage cubbies for the hats and the what-nots, so now even though hats will pile up after a snowstorm, there’s somewhere to put them away and out of sight. Is it perfect? No. But is it still overflowing? Also no. Now we can walk in the door without being immersed in chaos. 

But listen, one of my overarching mantras is, there’s a time and a place for everything

Including chaos. A companion to today’s bit idea of clearing out the places where energy is festering is to have some place in your house that can be a mess. For us this is the art table in our kitchen. If the kids’ crap is all over the living room, I am on them to clean it up because that is space we all share. But if it’s on the art table, I let it be. That’s their space, after all… better for them to realize that having a cluttered surface impedes productivity than to have me constantly asking them to put that crap away, or even for me to put it away for them.

So long as this spot doesn’t impede the flow of energy and sense of harmony in your home, let it accumulate stuff for a while, especially if it keeps those high-traffic areas clear for all kinds of good comings and goings. 

Daily Tiny Assignment

Your tiny assignment is to assess–find out where energy is festering in your life. It doesn’t have to be in your house. It could be your car. Or your desk at work. Once you figure out the trouble spots, pick one and give some good thought to what kinds of structures or systems you can set up to alleviate that pile up. And bonus points for figuring out a spot in your home that you can let be a mess, some place  that DOESN’T impede the energy from flowing in other parts of the house. You don’t need a picture perfect house–you just need the energy to be able to flow.

Come back tomorrow for the final piece of spring cleaning your life–and that is to be intentional about the things you’re releasing. 


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