So yes this really is my closet. Yikes, huh? I could be embarrassed that it’s a complete and total mess, but I doubt if you really care how clean my closet is and as you can tell I haven’t exactly been caring about it either. It’s not like that’s where I hang out, it’s a closet. It’s meant for tucking stuff away in. A place where you turn off the light, close the door, and don’t thinking about what’s in there.
Obviously I’m the one responsible for this space in my house, it is my closet. Nobody else needs to go in there. Nobody else needs to see how tidy it is or what it is that I actually keep in there. It’s my personal space with my personal stuff. But as I look into my closet and think to myself, “Man, I really need to clean that up.” I know there is something deeper buried underneath of those piles and underneath of everything that has been so easy to stuff away and ignore. I see a metaphor here, a meaningful parallel, which lends a clue into the state of internal being. Is my closet telling me that there is chaos in my life? That something has gotten way out of control? As I look inside of this small space cram-packed with whatever the heck is in there I know that much like I have been ignoring the state of my closet I have also been ignoring the state of my being. It makes me wonder: Do I feel whole? Do I feel balanced? Or do I feel like I am being strained through a colander day-to-day? Allowing only certain aspects to get through and leaving other pieces of myself behind.
So I need to examine closer what it is that I stuff away, turn the light off on, and close the door to? Well, I’m really active with my writing work right now but not so physically active. I have been eating, eating, eating, but not thinking about what it is I am putting into my body or how much! I have been busy running around with the kids but not taking time to just sit and enjoy watching them. Definitely staying up too late and not getting enough sleep and as a result my threshold for being patient and non-reactive has whittled to a very thin level. I see that I am out of balance in how I am currently living my life, putting a lot of time and energy into certain areas and totally dropping the ball in others.
The way I see it, it really is just like a closet that keeps getting added to. It is not any single item that tips the scale of being balanced but an accumulation of many things that weigh it down and wear us out. I understand that self-care is important and yet here I am very much so lacking in it. Both my state of being and my closet are telling me to slow down and give attention to those areas that I have been ignoring. It’s time to de-clutter my physical space as well as my inner space.
When you look at cluttered chaos what do you want to do? Run away? Ignore it and let the chaos keep building? Or do something about it? Clean it up, organize, dig through it, and see what’s really in there. Or does that become an obsession for you and you get kicked out of balance in the other direction towards giving too much attention to the task at hand? Where is it that you are lacking balance in your own life?
You can look at the quadrants of being to get a better idea of where you may be giving too much or not enough (see the below image of my personal diagram for an example). Ask yourself: Do I feel emotionally healthy? Do I feel mentally in balance or physically in balance? Do I feel spiritually engaged? The areas that come up for you as being not in good standing are the areas of your metaphorical closet that need to be dug through and given attention.
So to find out what could possibly be hiding away under your piles of “stuff” that you cram in, close the door to, and turn the light off on, you may want to draw up your own diagram and just take a chance at seeing what comes to mind. Self-examination can be a catalyst tool to get you where you want to be. There’s no pressure here just give yourself the freedom to think about it and see what it is that you write down. Your inner being will then have a chance to air out, to clear away some old stuff, and maybe even get rid of some repeating patterns that just don’t work for you. The door will open, the light will be turned on, and you will be all the more balanced and self-aware for doing so.
It’s like this, have you ever cleaned a room in your home and felt so much better in that space? Like the room was lighter, clearer, and maybe even a little easier to breathe in. Well that’s just exactly what it feels like to clean up the personal space of your being. I know for me that room tends to become my new favorite because it just feels so good to be in clear space! Wouldn’t it be nice to feel lighter and be more fully YOU and less bogged down by that which clutters your life?
Ok so now what? Now it’s time to act! And you get to decide what that means and which pile of your closet you are willing to tackle first. For me, I have started a simple “lifestyle challenge” with a few supporters near and dear to me. We have agreed to give up a food that we indulge in and exercise for 4 hours a week for a whole month. That will be a stretch from where I am beginning but it’s a good challenge and I’m willing to start. And oh yes, about that closet, I’ll dedicate ten minutes a day for five days a week until it is clean. Little by little I’ll pick through and clear out my clutter and little by little I will work towards being both externally balanced with my outer being and internally balanced with my inner being.
Don’t get me wrong, my life is great, but I know I don’t want to live the way I have been. I want to experience fullness. I see the areas that I am lacking in and how it affects the whole of my experience and I am making a conscious effort now to shift into a more balanced existence and I imagine a more peaceful one as well. Thank you for being an audience for me. Just writing this and knowing someone else will read it makes me feel more accountable and will help me to be motivated through this clearing phase I am entering into. I wish you the absolute best in your endeavor as well.
Take good care!