Welcome to day 4 of our four week program to restore and renew. Today's task is to declutter a small area of your house. It can be as small as a drawer, or a bookshelf. Arm yourself with three bags or boxes and name them "Throw away", "Keep" and "Donate". As you go through the contents of the drawer or cupboard be ruthless. Try not to get emotionally involved with the objects. Ask yourself if you really need it, what is the reason why you want to hold onto it, what would be the purpose in keeping it and could somebody else benefit from it. A general rule of thumb is that if you have not used an object in six months time, chances are you will not use it again. Sometimes we are faced by an object that holds a lot of sentimental value for us. My advice is to put it aside and come back to it again after having sorted everything else out. Once you have sorted the space out and restored order, you can again ask these same questions of the sentimental items you have set aside earlier.
The benefits of decluttering are actually much more than just having a tidy environment, it also has some psychological benefits. Clutter not only cramps our physical space, but it also confines us mentally. Most people find it difficult to focus on their work or studies when they are surrounded by a disarray of objects and chaos. We may not be actively aware of its influence on our well-being, but subconsciously we might feel ill at ease. It could lead to feelings of frustration and irritability. A presence of clutter could hamper our productivity and lead to procrastination. It might even affect our confidence. Sometimes physical clutter is a symptom of what is happening inside ourselves, and we may need to also address our mental clutter. Clutter leads to excess baggage. Excess baggage becomes a burned which hampers our progress through life and it saps our energy.
Remember the old saying: Rome was not built in a day. The same goes for clutter. You did not accumulate it all in one day, therefore you cannot expect to do it all in one day. It is okay to do it over time. Start small, drawer by drawer, room by room, and before you know it you have created a happy organised space for you and your family. A space to breathe. Above all, have fun!