Freedom From Clutter

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Are you calendar challeneged?

Hello and welcome back!

There are many uses for a calendar

A calendar is usually used for specific days, such as birthdays and anniversaries. They are used for appointments; doctor’s, hair, pets, and invitations to weddings, showers, graduations and the like. You may also use them to keep track of a work schedule or when you have lessons of some sort. But, they can be used for so much more.

I use it as a journal.

The thing I use it for that I love the most is when I hear someone mention something in casual conversation about what they love. As soon as I come home I place what they love where there birthday or anniversary is located on the calendar. This makes gift giving so easy! And you know what you’re giving will be used and loved. I use it for my jobs and clients phone numbers. I also use it for when I need to R.S.V.P. or if I have a deadline, or when a book or DVD is due back to the library. Make-up usually goes bad quickly so I record when I purchased each new item. I use it to record when I need to pay a bill or send a payment, I record automated payments as well. I also use it for when I purchased a pair of glasses, a piece of furniture or an appliance, this cuts down on guessing. Sometimes I record the weather. I will record when someone is due for a procedure so I can give them my best wishes before it, and call them after. The one I use has an open margin along the side that I record things I need to remember for the following year. It could be when to schedule a yearly check-up, what I want to ask or tell a doctor, when I need to order or mail a package, when tickets for a concert will be available, or even how a recipe failed or succeeded. Or what someone loved or maybe something that I want to try in the following year. This works great as I update my new and next years calendar I go through the past year  and notice each note I wrote in each month.  I will even record when a symptom first began too, this is quiet helpful if something were to develop, for the doctor to know about. Since I am sensitive to caffeine I’ll record when I may need to abstain, such as Novocain (the day of none) or a mammogram (2 days prior) or when to fast for blood work. It can be used for milestones from an infant’s new abilities, weight or food intake, to how old someone is, to what anniversary a couple is celebrating. A calendar can keep track of vitamins or medicines, to see if they are working, are helpful, or are useful. A calendar can be used as a reminder to get invites out by a specific day or when to send out holiday cards. It can record balances you have saved for specific wants such as vacations, holiday’s or a purchase. It can keep track of your weight or inches. I record upcoming events, such as fairs, when a movie is coming out, or even when someone has a baby due. At the end of each year I get to look through it and see all the things I experienced! It gives me a fresh perspective for the upcoming year. Plus this frees me from any guesswork that may be off.

What I use

The calendar I use is approximately 8 x10 when closed. It is a thin book and I purchase it at the dollar store. It also has plastic sleeves inside the front and back cover. I use these to keep passwords, packing lists whether for an emergency or vacation, and business cards of people I may need to contact in the future, but don’t necessarily want in my phone contacts. Because my calendar is always with me I keep in the sleeve information to credit cards in case they were stolen such as the phone number in order to report it. I absolutely love my calendar & take it with me in a book bag. And because I record so much I look at it daily and that is what a calendar is for. If you don’t look at it, it is useless. Journals are great as well, but I use my calendar daily so I know the important things will be recorded there.

I hope this is helpful!

~Sandy

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Do you have mental clutter?

Hello and welcome back!

Is there such a thing as mental clutter?

Yes. Clutter, in any form, can be a burden to the life you are creating today. Whether it is many ideas that clutter your mind or negative thoughts, if it does not benefit, serve or nurture you it is clutter.

What to do with negative thoughts

There is no donation center I know of that will take this kind of clutter. But you can still apply a process for de-cluttering. When you sort through your material clutter you usually have a story that goes along with the  items. You may know when you bought an item, how much it cost or who and when someone gave it to you. Images and memories  about the item may provoke certain feelings and the reason it can be challenging to release it.  Mental clutter is the same.  Negative thoughts get justified why they are taking up space in your mind and will even demand you need them. You may even state, “Well, how will I know when something is good or bad if I de-clutter these thoughts?” You will know by how you feel not by what you judge. Sometimes you aren’t even aware the thought is there, it becomes background noise, yet will still provoke feelings usually negative ones. Ask yourself this one question throughout your day whenever you catch yourself in thought, “Would I choose this thought I am thinking right now and give it to my dearest friend or would I be willing to say it out loud?” If the answer comes back, “No” then it is clutter. Now because no donation center will take these thoughts you will have a different strategy to put in place. Challenge the thoughts that you catch, and become familiar with what you think. After you catch a thought the phrase to use is, “so what” to whatever you think, this brings the emotions the thoughts provoked down a notch. “So what” allows you to think of what you can do about it. It takes you out of victimhood. Here’s an example; “I just bought another item when my place is already overcrowded.” “So what. What if I call Freedom from Clutter for help?” Or “I just ate a muffin and I’m on a diet.” “So what. What if I start again at the next meal?” Our thoughts can make an event or situation  scary, tragic, or a disaster when in reality it is not. You are still here, breathing and making choices, are you not? Then nothing is a catastrophe, nothing. After so many “So what” you’ll become calm enough to know what your next move will be. When you become aware and accept what does not serve or nurture you, you will do something about it. I promise. Becoming aware of your thoughts is enough to de-clutter the ones that do not serve you. So when your mind starts acting up tonight when you want to sleep say, “So what” to whatever comes your way. Sweet dreams!

What to do with all those ideas

An immediate image or story comes to mind with each idea that comes through.  Usually followed by your thoughts. My suggestion is to write the ideas down. Keep a pad and pen with you at all times. Daily or weekly look at these ideas you have recorded and recognize if any of them are opportunities to take advantage of. If so, take action. Writing things down will help clear your mind. Another trick is to give your complete attention and focus to one task at a time.  This is very freeing to a person with an overactive mind. For example, when you get in the shower feel the entire process. If you notice your mind wandering just bring it back into focus. Notice how the water feels on your body, how the soap smells, what the floor feels like under your feet, what do you hear, and notice your breathing.

Wishes of freedom from clutter to you all!

~Sandy


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How to Simplify You Life in 1 Easy Step

Hello and welcome back!

How to simplify your life in 1 easy step.

Stop doing what does not work. Yup, it is that easy. What’s that, you say it must be more difficult. Nope. Seriously. I promise. I know it sounds like it would be a no-brainer to stop doing what does not work, yet there is so much information on how-to change, shift and transform circulating and being produced. Maybe I have a secret that allows you to do it this time! Read on…

Identify 1 behavior that does not work?

I am asking you to identify only what you have control over. What do you do that clearly does not work, that does not make you happy. Pick one action, behavior or habit, it can be something small and simple, or annoying and large. Okay, got it?

Now what?

What would the opposite be of the one item you chose? For example, let’s say you want to lose 10 pounds and the habit of eating ice cream does not allow you to have what you desire. Now pick the opposite of the behavior you chose, which, in this case, would be to stop eating ice cream. Accept this habit is not letting you fulfill your desire, and that you truly want to release 10 pounds.  Another example may be  that you want to live in a peaceful environment, but you have too much clutter. The opposite could be to make decisions and take action on clearing your clutter.

Next step…

Now, decide what effective strategy and action steps you could put into place that would make your desire happen.  Get creative. For example, for eating ice cream, you could find an activity to do during the times you would have been indulging. Or you could decide to no longer purchase ice cream, or you could find an alternative to ice cream that would still allow you to happily fulfill your desire of transformation,  without creating guilt, frustration, or self-loathing. For the clutter your action plan may be to handle, sort, or clean out 1 pile, 1 drawer, or 1 item a day.

Do this until…

Practice your new pursuit until it becomes your new habit or the change you desire has been fulfilled. Here’s the secret! Make it more important to celebrate each step or each time you commit and focus on your desire than when you do not. Enjoy the journey along the whole route. When you tackle any goal in fear, that you “should” or “should not” be doing whatever, when you force or demand a specific outcome, or you hurry to the finish line, you lose the opportunity to notice all the best parts. By noticing and celebrating each step YOU did and took allows you to open yourself up to curiosity and an interest into what is taking place within you as you shift. Imagine a flower bud blossoming as you. By focusing on what you accomplished naturally brings a sense of wonder and adventure. Every time you take a step toward what you desire and you recognize each success, even the tiniest ones, you allow the sense of freedom, joy and enthusiasm all along the way. That daily momentum is what keeps you going when rough waters hit.

Keep going

Once you feel secure and your new habit is firmly in place move onto something else that you desire to shift, transform or change.  The progress you continually make will increase your confidence muscle. Take baby steps when changing habits and most importantly be gentle with yourself and for goodness sake CELEBRATE!

Much peace and love to you all! I would love to know what you chose, please let me know so I can support and cheer you on!

~Sandy

A quote to share ~

“Your life will change only when you decide to change it. ”

~Gary Zukav

 


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The easiest way to get organized

Hello and welcome back!

The easiest way to get organized…

You can’t organize clutter. The best piece of advice I could give anyone, client or not, would be to get rid of the clutter first before even trying to get organized.

Just get started…

I promise you by taking the first step the momentum will build. It is okay to go slow so you don’t burn out, and it is okay to complete a room, desk or closet before stopping. Whatever systems works best for you. Set a timer and begin.

What stops you…

Clutter is a pile or piles of delayed decisions. It is far easier to shove clutter into a drawer, closet, or garage than to decide what to do about it. As costly as storage units are it is still far easier to bring it there and cram it in with the rest of your clutter than decide what to do about it. Why?

The question, “what-if” won’t leave you alone…

Imagine you’ve moved the same boxes from home to home without unpacking them or using any of the items stored, yet you still keep them. You may think you will need these items some day. That means your belief system is set on lack. Perhaps you purchased items that promised happiness and you’re still waiting for the happiness to show up. But guess what? It isn’t coming through things. Happiness will be achieved once you release the clutter not add to it.

When to hire Freedom from Clutter…

When you decide you want only in your life what will serve and nurture you. It does not mean you become a minimalist, unless that is your desire. It does mean you will go through this with a professional who will lovingly help you through the journey. It is not costly financially or emotionally nor is it a timely process once we begin. You will experience freedom as you have never felt before and that my friend is priceless. I will help and support you in making decisions once and for all. Your reward is a clutter-free organized life!

If you have any question I would be more than happy to help and answer them. Just add a comment and I will return a reply toot sweet. Or leave me feedback on what you are having issues with so I can address them in the next blog.

You may not be able to control the chaos life brings, but you can have and enjoy peaceful surroundings.

~Sandy


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My take on boundaries

Hello & welcome back!

I recently read an article on boundaries which I didn’t agree with, but felt with the holidays upon us it was a timely topic.

I don’t necessarily believe in boundaries and I’ll tell you why. As I tried to implement them into my life a while back I felt a sense of defensiveness, on guard, and as though I was creating a separateness from those I loved and cared about. Even people I had to be around on a regular basis I wanted to learn cooperation and enjoy a peaceful existence not have more rules to follow. I knew my true nature sought love and connections and boundaries weren’t going to get me there.

Every time I accept someone or a situation I know instinctively and immediately what to do and how to handle it. I want to be clear acceptance doesn’t mean you love, agree or understand; it means you see clearly what is in front of you without attaching a story to it. Acceptance is factual not judgmental. When you feel negative emotions it means you have made it about you and created a story.

Boundaries hold others responsible for how you feel and keeps you in resistance, wanting, wishing, or demanding someone or something be different than what is. Boundaries say the situation or person is unacceptable, I want you or it to change so I can feel better, but that isn’t how life works. It is arrogant to want another to change to appease you, even if you feel you are being abused. It is better to accept a person as is and if it is so awful accept it and decide what to do about it, instead of continually forcing change or hoping for it, get the heck out of there. When you are able to accept fully you will have no emotional attachment, so if you do leave a relationship you will feel neutral. In other words you can’t accept and still be pissed off. True acceptance doesn’t include emotions, good or bad, as a matter of fact it is drama free and the complete opposite of boundaries and resistance.

Your emotional turmoil stems from conditions you place on people and things you have no control over. It means you have attached an emotional story that has decided another has to behave a specific way for you to be happy, but with acceptance you can be happy regardless of how another behaves. When we take responsibility for our feelings we know no matter what happens, no matter how anyone is, we will be just fine, no lightening bolt will strike. 

When we tie others behavior into how it will make us look or feel, we are taking it personal and have assigned negative meaning to it. Even if you feel embarrassed it is better to accept your embarrassment then continue resisting the person or situation. By accepting another doesn’t mean they get to walk all over you nor does it excuse their behavior, but through acceptance you will know exactly how to handle or deal with the person or situation without getting emotionally invested. You will act or not, either way your actions will come from a grounded place. 

The article went on to suggest you approach the person you set boundaries with in a loving and caring manner. I believe the most loving and caring thing you could do, for anyone including yourself, is accept the person as they are opposed to trying to mold them to be how or who you want them to be. Even if you believe it is in their best interest, just accept where they are. It is your illusion, made up story, or fantasy. Boundaries are conditions placed on relationships and I also consider it a backward concept. The concept states you have to be a specific way in order for me to accept you, love you, or be happy with you. In reality acceptance comes first, people or situations show up, you accept it as is, and then you decide what, if anything, to do.

Life is about free will to choose what is best for you. Anything undesirable or that effects you negatively you can either influence change or leave. After all rain is just rain it isn’t personal, yet our thoughts make it so by assigning positive or negative meaning to it.

Practice acceptance by choosing a person you are having difficulty with and write down exactly who they are by using fact based words only, not emotional words or stories. When I did this I drew a stick figure and wrote the traits around the drawing. Record all their traits, don’t judge the traits as right or wrong, good or bad. This isn’t about picking the person apart, but a way to just see them without emotions getting in the way. After you complete the list look at it as though it were the real person. Accept this is who they are, understand they can’t or won’t change, at least not in this moment and maybe never, decide right now what are you going to do about it. How can you guarantee, if you decide to be in their presence again, to keep your emotional well-being in tact, how can you remain feeling good? Your life is your process, it is about how you are going to show up in it, your life or happiness is not determined by how others show up.  

Have a very happy and safe holiday! Much peace and love ~ Sandy

Copyright 2013 by Sandy Lucas

 


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Trust the Process

Hello and welcome back!

Have you heard the phrase, “You can take the person out of the hood, but you can’t take the hood out of the person” ? The “hood”, in this example, is referring to the ego created self. The “hood”, for example sake, doesn’t mean that is who you are. True it may have been an experience, but that is all. Once a story about the experience was created it became your self concept. The ego has created a self image due to your emotionally charged experiences you had mostly as a child. The ego’s job is to protect you, to keep you alive. It believes by keeping this self image of you in tact will help. It doesn’t matter if you agree with this self image or not. The ego believes that is who you are and will continuously prove it to you by the thoughts it sends you and if you balk it will send in Mr. Fear. However, it doesn’t know if the self image it created is harmful or not. It does not know yes or no, right or wrong. It only knows the conclusions it came to from your emotionally charged experiences. It knows where your attention is at all times and what repetitive patterns, habits, and behaviors you exhibit. It will keep bringing you more of the same, again to protect you.

If it believes you are a person who lacks money because you place your focus or attention on the lack of money even if you won the lottery it would sabotage your efforts to become a rich person.  Not that you couldn’t change, but it would be beneficial if you understood how to work with your ego and how to trust life to do so.

The trick to turn your life around is to Trust the Process.

1.  Accept what is showing up even if it sucks. Once you learn to  accept life without reacting negatively you empower yourself. For example, you are headed out of town on a flight and your alarm failed to go off. You notice you may have enough time if everything goes smoothly. You trust the process by accepting your alarm didn’t go off and get dressed. You hit traffic. Again, you decide to trust the process, you place your attention on relaxing and know all will work out exactly as life has intended. As you release the panic and struggle and focus on  breathing the traffic opens up and you arrive with only minutes to spare. At check-in you are told the plane had been delayed and they have your seat waiting.  When you trust the process you allow life to be as is and miracles happen. Even if you didn’t make it on time, when you are truly committed to the process, you accept there was a reason for the missed flight.  When you accept what is happening in any given moment and you trust the process life will support you.  It will bring you exactly what you need, and what is best for you, even when you don’t know the reason, or understand it, or like it. Let go and trust the process.

2. Your true self is love, joy and peace. When you are anything but those the ego is around. The ego creates judgments and story’s to bring you back to the self image it created, but you can work with the ego versus struggle against it.  For example, if you wanted to change something about yourself decide what that looks like to  you and than focus on, act and behave, your way to being or having it. Find a plan or practices that support your change and take consistent, slow, if necessary, steps (consistency is the key not the speed) showing your ego you are safe. If you want more income do things that show you’re rich.  Whether it be to study books on investing, joining financial classes,  taking a big ticket car for a test drive or going to open houses in a neighborhood you will live in. Mentally bring emotionally charged experiences of having and spending large sums of money into your mind and continue to replay it daily. Focus on what you DO want and the good feelings it provokes. Align yourself with your definition of what you want and trust the process by being open to what shows up and act on everything that inspires you. 

3. Be the space for uneasy feelings, but don’t be the uneasy feeling. Meaning if you attach story’s to experiences or what is happening in your life it will bring about feelings. To avoid this focus on facts only. It is raining, period. Instead of, it is raining and my picnic is ruined.  It is raining. Now what? Or the house is cluttered, period. Instead of my house is cluttered and I’m a lazy slob.  By focusing on the facts only you are accepting what is, and if it is undesirable, act, do something about it. A story or judgment makes you a victim of the circumstance and is used as an excuse or justification to hold back change and to keep the ego created self in tact. Instead of accepting the situation you are accepting the judgment about it. 

As you begin this process, uneasy feelings will still come up, become aware of it and be the space for it. Don’t react and don’t make it about you just be aware it is there and put your attention on an object or your breath or the energy inside your body.  Again, the fact is you have an uneasy feeling that happens to be in your space, period. Accept it. Tell yourself it is a story you’ve been attached to for a long time, but it is time to get on board with trusting the process and than breathe and let it go.

I wish you all the potential life has to offer!

Pease ~ Sandy

Copyright 2013 by Sandy Lucas


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How to Find and Keep Love

Hello and welcome back!

This is the third and final part to the book, “How to Find and Keep Love“, by Sandy Lucas. Enjoy!

Step 3: Keep the love going
Once you found your special someone and you are ready to take it to the next level or if you are in a committed relationship I share with you what I found that has kept our relationship fulfilling, happy and loving. Even if you don’t get your partner on board with my suggestions, what I found, if you do it anyway and there is a benefit to you and your relationship you’ll usually find they will want what you’re having! Plus it isn’t about changing another or making them be or act a specific way to make you feel comfortable or happy, it is about YOU being in charge of your happiness.  

1. Don’t stop holding hands, kissing, or being attractive. Just because you found them doesn’t mean you are free to take these areas for granted. Continue to make the effort, you both deserve it and are worth it. 

2.  Don’t point out their weaknesses, focus on their positive qualities. Yes, this takes effort, but it’s SO worth it, I promise. In the beginning you are blind to any flaws, they can’t do any wrong, but as you fall into a routine and time goes by little things may begin to irk you. Stop. What if this person is going to do this thing that irks you forever, can you live with it? If not, I suggest you move on. If you think they will change, you’re wrong, wrong, wrong. I repeat you’re wrong. It isn’t that change can’t or won’t happen, the point is it is not up to you to decide what they should change and when they should do it. Respect yourself and the other person by not second guessing your annoyance. It is extremely difficult to love a fault finder and it is no picnic for the one who is bothered either. If, you can accept them because their positive qualities over shadow any irritating minor habits continue to focus on what they’re doing right. Remember, there are many ways of doing things, if you don’t like how someone is doing something certainly talk about it once if it is troublesome, but otherwise don’t sweat the small stuff and above all, don’t take any thing personally in the first place. 

3. Don’t stop having fun together. Find ways to surprise each other, keep it spontaneous and amusing. It doesn’t have to be over the top or expensive it can be simple and still meaningful. It’s about being excited and celebrating your togetherness. Getting stuck in a rut is one way to slowly kill a relationship. 

4. Don’t call each other negative names such as jerk, bastard or bitch or use labels such as stubborn or controlling. If it escalates to that point respect the relationship by calling a time out. Don’t gossip, complain, or talk negatively to others about problems you experience with your partner either. If you can’t work it out together then bring in an unbiased professional only.   

5. Support each other in your individual hobbies or interests. Rally and cheer each other on versus seeing your partners interests as a threat.  

6. Make choices based on acceptance. You don’t have to love everything, but if you can accept what is you’ll hit a home run. Judgments or pointing out, what you consider, a persons faults or mistakes are a quick way to kill a relationship. To stop unnecessary judgments know your partner is doing their best even if you don’t agree, understand or like it. Accept that your partner is doing his/her best, that they can’t do any different. If they knew better, they’d do better. This goes for you too, know you are doing your best. By knowing this truth allows you to cut each other slack, it eases your emotions and halts criticism. And don’t make mental deals that when they are a specific way you’ll accept them fully. By wishing or demanding your partner change you hold the relationship together with strings which have a tendency to break and fall apart, instead accept with your whole heart knowing you are each enough as is. Become aware when you want someone to change it is because you either fear it will effect you negatively or you feel it will benefit or enhance you positively. Both of these views, however will cause you disappointment every single time, because you’re putting your faith in someone you have no control over. When you feel this way simply interpret it to mean you want something to be different than what it is. And that’s okay, it benefits you to acknowledge your preferences, it allows you to improve yourself knowing what you want and what you don’t. By taking responsibility for your inability to accept, instead of trying to change someone to be different for your sake, will actually hold you accountable for your life. In other words, your focus shifts from the other and what you want to be different back to you and what you can control. 

7. Speak openly and honestly about your needs. If you’re not sure, decide what it is you don’t want and figure out the opposite. I also highly recommend the book, “The Five Love Languages.” By Gary Chapman. It is an insightful little book.  

8. Ask, listen and trust. Your intimate partner sees the real you and may have pertinent information you could use to improve yourself or release a challenging situation. Sometimes we get stuck in limiting habits and don’t realize we are doing something that isn’t to our benefit. You know those times when you keep doing the same thing and expect different results? The difference from a judgement is this is asked for advice, from the one person that wants the best for you, because it benefits them for the true you to emerge. I won’t lie my initial reaction was to feel an inner ouch upon hearing my partners perspective. As I kept at it, taking in what is said without reacting to it, allowed me to see my ego at the helm. I was then able to clearly see how the ego creates misery. This allowed me to awaken to stuff that truly didn’t and doesn’t matter. I was able to become free due to my partners support.   

9. Stop trying to control the uncontrollable. And for goodness sake, stop trying to be right. Instead, I suggest you call a truce and continue building a loving bond. Or, if you insist, fight your point, strengthen your ego and become separate from your partner. If you choose to call a truce the key to stopping yourself is to do one or all of the following; put your focus on your breath, put your attention on an object, or feel the aliveness and the energy in your body. Soothe yourself by mentally saying, “This too shall pass” and believe it will. Then take a nap, a bath, or if the energy is still there go wash the car. 

10. Whatever you did to woo him/her keep doing it. Make celebrations, special dates not just when you’re headed to an event together, but when it is just the two of you. You may feel silly or anxious at first, but remember it is okay to be vulnerable that’s what makes you adorable to each other. 
I wish you all the best!
Peace ~Sandy

Copyright 2013 By Sandy Lucas