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Spring Cleaning to Ease Your Mind

It’s that time of the year again, where the weather is getting nicer and we tend to start thinking about spring cleaning. This year I particularly noticed the need to clean as I pulled out my box of summer shoes from under the bed and find dust bunnies have, well, done what bunnies tend to do. And as I straightened up some boxes in the back of the hall closet, I wondered aloud how there could be so much dust and dirt in my house. We are not dirty people and try to keep things very clean. We make time to sweep (hardwood floors) and dust and wipe things down every week, sometimes twice a week. But still the dirt piles up.

And I keep thinking I need to get rid of some of the boxes and the junk that piles up so I don’t have such a mess every year. I’m not saying I just collect junk, but if I’m honest with myself, I don’t need a lot of the stuff that is sitting around in places like the back of the floor of the hall closet in a box that I haven’t opened for a year.

I was recently talking with a friend about an article she read about spring cleaning. I apologize for not having a reference to the article. It sounded great. But the topic was actually about cleaning up and getting rid of things to clear both personal and mental space. The idea is that as you throw things out (or sell them – see my article that includes ways to get money for that stuff instead of just trashing it), you don’t need to focus on or really feel a huge sense of loss. It recommended looking at the process as a way to make room for yourself. Enjoy the freedom that comes with clearing some space. You can enjoy this freedom both physically and mentally. While this makes sense on the surface, I had to really let it sink in a while.

And I came to the conclusion that, yes, it would be both a physical and mental freedom. Thinking specifically about that box in the hall closet, I wouldn’t have to shove it way in the back of the closet to fit the baby stroller in front of it, and I wouldn’t have to move it all the way out to clean around it if it wasn’t there. That’s the physical part. Mentally, I wouldn’t have to think about having to move the box all the time and stress about it being in my way and remember to clean behind it when I do my spring cleaning. How many other things are there in my house that would provide the same freedom if they simply weren’t there.

So I am setting to work on clearing up my house. Now before you chastise me and say that sometimes there are things you should maybe just keep (i.e. is my box of Colorado Rockies memorabilia from their first few years as a team going to be worth thousands someday??), realize that I am suggesting you focus on those things that are going to give you freedom and peace of mind. If that box in the storage unit with the potentially valuable memorabilia in it doesn’t bother you, then you can leave it. But what about the tub of candles you haven’t even used in the 6 years since you bought your house? Maybe keep one or two in a closet for power outages, but either burn the rest or get rid of them. And don’t drown in a sense of loss. Instead, enjoy the freedom! Enjoy the space and the one-more-thing off your list of things to clean, or clean around.

Remember that when you find balance in your life, including your personal (physical and emotional well-being) life, only then can you be truly successful with your finances and get to enjoy your life as a whole. Be sure to learn more about life balance  and how iMoneyCoach can help you reach financial freedom with our online courses.

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