It will soon be spring. When I was younger the thought of spring and a massive house cleaning session went together. My grandmother, with whom I lived, always insisted every year that the house get a good spring clean. Being young and having decidedly more interesting things to do with my time than clean this filled me with dread. That meant no more gathering of clothes and hiding them in a bundle or stuffing shoes under the bed when asked to tidy my room. This was the real deal, where cupboards would be emptied, old stuff given away to the rag and bone man(a chap who made his living selling stuff people had no longer any use for),shelves washed ,everything lifted dusted or in the case of floor rugs taken outside and beaten until clean. That meant a lot of time doing very boring, unnecessary things. Or so I thought then. The funny thing was that after I had complained, moaned and generally tried everything I could to get out of it I had to just knuckle down and do it.My grandmother was a very gentle woman but had the most stubborn nature I have ever met. I knew if I didn’t help she would just do it herself and she knew that my conscience would never allow that. So we would work together and get everything done. The strange thing was that despite my protestations I loved how the house felt after. It was never a dirty house, my grandmother would never have allowed that, yet once we had completed the spring clean everything felt better. It looked nice too but it was more the feeling of space it gave that I enjoyed. A strange feeling, coming from the girl who could happily live with a bulging cupboard that required brute force to close, but that is how it felt.
Years later as I work with people I find myself often telling them to declutter their lives. To get rid of all the unnecessary tasks they fill their day with and concentrate on only the most important. It is amazing how many silly things get included in to the day to day duties of a busy person, things that could well wait or be relegated to other members of the household. I am sure that if you looked at your own schedule you would understand exactly what I mean.
Aside from this one of the quickest and biggest improvement that can be made to make you feel better, is to have one clear, uncluttered nice space that you come home too. Sometimes because of living with teenagers or an untidy spouse or a multitude of other reasons, I have heard them all, it is not possible to have the whole house clean and tidy. It is possible to choose one room, the room where you would unwind in, to be clean and free of any distracting mess. For some that might be the bedroom, for others the bathroom or sitting room or kitchen. It doesn’t matter where you pick only that it is a place you would go to, when stressed, to chill out or relax.
Set aside time to clean it thoroughly. Get rid of anything that hasn’t been used or that you dislike but have kept because so and so gave it to you. If you don’t like it, it will drain your energy by just being present when you try to unwind. Give it away or if that isn’t possible because of sentiment or obligation move it elsewhere. Somewhere you can’t see it. Then set about creating a personal space that suits you. Create your perfect space to unwind and feel relaxed in.
Think of all your senses. What colours, textures even shapes do you like. Find items that you love to put in to your space. Think about scents. What do you love to smell the scent of? What smell makes you take a nice deep breath in and relax with? If you haven’t thought about this before go to the shops and have a smell of some of the many jar candles available. I suggest jar as they are generally not so easily knocked over and have long lasting scents. If you can, get one that makes you feel happy or calm or relaxed. Anything in fact that you want to feel in this specific area, find a scent that suits this purpose. One note of caution If you have young children and or animals and they are going to have access to this area stay away from reed diffusers as they are too tempting ,yet dangerous for both if knocked over or drunk. Candles also require caution but can create a fantastic atmosphere and really make a difference to how you feel. Create a room that you love to walk in to. One that just by knowing you have it there allows you to feel relaxed. Make it your place to recharge and keep it that way. This is actually a great way of taking back control of your life. It starts with just one space and then often has a habit of spreading to give you more positive energy to declutter and reconstruct in a positive way, all the areas of your life that you have been neglecting or just surviving not thriving with. Why not try it and see.