Warning: Tidying Up Might NOT Bring You Joy

Warning: Tidying Up Might NOT Bring You Joy
There is a great sweeping movement afoot extolling the virtues of tidying up your living space. The assertion is: De-clutter and invite joy into your life. Keep only your inspiring possessions. Get rid of those old, useless dust collectors and doing it together as a family is even better: A simple formula for stress management and happiness, perhaps a little too simple, and with sinister and robotic undertones. The Alvin Toffler ¡§Throw Away Society¡¨ mindset is being reinforced. What¡¦s next ¡V getting rid of messy old people? Keeping my home and work space neat and organized makes me feel like a people-pleaser as opposed to a self-pleaser.

Life is messy. Sickness is messy. Love is messy. Families are messy. The creative process is messy. The human condition needs messiness and a bit of chaos to jumpstart the ability to reevaluate absolute truths. Often when I have thrown out, or donated some clothes and furniture which did not bring me joy at the time, or because I had not worn/used them in a couple of years, I later on regretted that decision as these items came back in style and I even replaced them with a costlier version! Sometimes I like to rotate my possessions and bring them back to life to see them with a fresh new perspective.

There is great comfort in my messy desk where I know how to find my scattered papers and strewn scribblings. Make it clinical and I have trouble writing and percolating original, more complex and challenging ideas. Keep in mind that you can be too clean like someone taking too many showers and drying out the skin, or keeping the house so clean that guests and even family members are afraid to enjoy it.

A tidy life versus a messy life is analogous to stylized, hair-sprayed hair versus natural or wind swept hair. Both are fine options depending on what supports your identity today and makes you feel more confident. Knowing that you have choices and options, as one size does not fit all, will help you embrace your flaws and see how to use them to augment your mood as opposed to unleashing your stern inner critic. So, you can berate yourself that you have adult ADD, or you can view yourself as a scanner, who is good at so many things, looking for what you truly enjoy. You can be disgusted with your belly overhanging your jeans, or see yourself as voluptuous and substantial.

Some people prefer a Zen garden while others prefer a Monet type garden. A Monet mind cannot be forced in the mold of a Zen mind. Both are wonderful choices for different types.
For more information on managing your stress and reclaiming your life read my book, Addicted to Stress: A Woman's 7 Step Program to Reclaim Joy and Spontaneity in Life. To listen to archived radio shows with guest experts visit Turn On Your Inner Light Radio Show

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