Piles of junk in garages and closets, overflowing papers on desks, items unused for years, masses of unanswered email, clothing never worn, useless gifts that collect dust; all these things, says Brooks Palmer, come weighted with shame and guilt and have a suffocating effect on spirit and soul. In this insightful book, Palmer shows how to get rid of the things in our lives that no longer serve us. By tossing out these unneeded items, we are also eliminating their negative influences, freeing up energy, and unlocking our potential. Loaded with inspiring anecdotes and practical tips, Clutter Busting is based on the premise that your things are not sacred, but you are. The book explores such fundamental topics as the false identities we assume through clutter, the fear of change those junk piles represent, the addictive nature of holding on to objects, how clearing clutter makes room for clarity and sweeps away confusion and stasis, and much more. With Brooks's upbeat and compassionate guidance, you'll find yourself clearing the way for new and exciting things to come into your life.
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I've read a LOT of books on clutter. And, thanks to those (especially Peter Walsh - "It's All Too Much"), I got rid of a lot of the easy stuff. But several cluttery things have persisted, and until now, I was unable to move forward.
First, let me say that I consider myself a competent, emotionally stable, and confident person. Anyone who knows me would say the same. I've been a leader, a mentor, and the go-to person if you feel stuck. Further, if you walked into my house, you'd ask.. "what clutter?". I've hid it all well into closets, nice storage containers, and neatly stacked piles hidden behind closed doors. That said, the pile of clothes in my large walk-in closet is another story. I've also neatly organized overwhelming amounts of recipes, art, home décor, junk mail that "might" interest me someday, plants (and vases), cleaning products, candles etc. I've also accumulated e-mail that I can't seem to delete, and obligations and people that I don't particularly want in my life. This book has caused me to see things about myself that I have not seen previously. There are parts of myself I have buried into my closets, piles, and commitments, including ambivalent and conflicting beliefs about what I want and who I want to be.
This book has made me see that my stuff is holding me back. For example. I realize that my closet holds clothing that represents the person I wish I could become (clothing that is too small, or was trendy in the magazine/store), and clothing that represents the person I fear I could become (clothes that are too large -- you know.. in case I get too fat!! ). This has forced me to ask myself...."who am I in this moment?... who do I want to become? Do I really want to become this person that wears this mini-skirt, or this oversized elasticized waisted pair of shorts? Why am I not wearing these now?"... Then I realize I'm ashamed of the body I have and the weight I am... and holy cr@#....what a Pandora's box of emotion in that closet! I had no idea that I was feeling shame about how I looked, and these items that are too small, or sexy and trendy just serve as a reminder of that shame. And the clothes that are too big serve as a reminder that I fear I'll be out-of-control with eating -- another shameful belief. I *NEVER* pictured myself as a person who has shame about anything. Geeze. If you told me I'd see my stuff in this light (before reading this book), I'd have told you that you were crazy. Not me.
With the help of this author I've actually connected dots between my "stuff", my weight, my self-image, and what's really important to me. I've even started seeing why I continue to buy more, and eat more, and take on more responsibilities than I want to have. WOW....Epiphany City!
One of my favorite *reminders* from this author is to also "let go" of "expectations". This is huge for me. Sometimes I can get too attached to how I want things to go, or to be. And this doesn't allow space for other unexpected (and good) things to enter. It's also incredibly draining mentally. It is a fabulous reminder to create empty spaces so that things can enter that serve us better. and to let go of outcomes. He offers plenty of "exercises" to do in order to help let go of these things and make space for the things that better represent who we are right now, and who we want to become.
I highly recommend this book, and encourage all who read/listen to this book to keep an open mind about what you might find.