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sparking joy by tidying up (your mind)

Have you seen Marie Kondo’s show on Netflix, Tidying Up? Its been crazy cold here and I did a bit of bingeing on a few episodes. I know there are a TON of wonderful and super-crazy reports about the #KonMari method online, but you be the judge. YOU DO YOU.

Not only do I kind of love her – she’s sweet and soft spoken – but her ideas and suggestions are doable. There’s no team that comes in to do all the heavy lifting giving the viewers a big reveal 24 minutes later. The entire process is beautifully simple – put all your items of a category together in one place, then decide which of them are your favorites. Ones you don’t love can get donated.

Marie is a professional organizing consultant. On the show, households are introduced to her method and then given the time to do the work. Marie comes back to teach the next steps and then to see the finished job. It's REAL life.

Another similar concept to consider is the amount of "stuff" you are carrying around in your head. By applying these same concepts of "does it spark joy" to your thoughts, memories and feelings, you might be able to let go of some of the emotional baggage you are carrying around.

A cluttered home hinders us from being our best. A cluttered office holds us back from getting the important work done. A cluttered mind can hold us back from being our happiest selves. When you clear out the debris and focus on the most important items, you spark mindfulness. Mindfulness can bring joy.

We are inundated with information. That cool phone you are carrying around in your pocket might be important to you, but it draws you into its vortex on command. Those beeps and chimes take you away from potentially more important things in order to focus on the urgent (but most likely unimportant) things. Is a Facebook "like" more important that reading a story to your grandchild? Is a text confirming your doctor's appointment more important than giving your full attention to your friend that is sharing her feelings?

I urge you to take one small area in your home or one larger category of items and take a good hard look at everything. What do you love? Display it proudly. Everything else can move along to a new home.

Once you have conquered that, take a look at the time-sucks, digital-noise and other distractions in your life and see if you can limit them, too. Focus on ONE task at hand and put your whole attention into it. Then move on to the next. Practice mindfulness. Be deliberate with your belongings, your thoughts and your time. You will be more efficient, more productive and essentially, happier.


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