Who could have guessed that the cathartic process of purging and decluttering one woman’s home one drawer, one closet, one room at a time could change the direction and trajectory of life forever?

What began as an attempt to help a client gradually declutter her home, that had become so overrun with clutter that she was overwhelmed to the point of feeling paralyzed and powerless to accomplish the task on her own, turned into an adventure and great revelation.

What ended up happening was completely unexpected. After almost a year of decluttering, a powerful, confident, emboldened woman emerged from underneath all of that clutter. the physical and emotional clutter that had been standing in the way of the peace, contentment and fulfillment that her clutter-free home now provides, was gone.

And even more importantly, after fully embracing the inner work of decluttering, she is now a woman who loves and respects herself enough to confront anyone (including herself) who tells her she can’t when she knows she CAN.

But perhaps the most significant impact of decluttering, both the physical and mental clutter, is the life-changing power that she discovered within herself hidden underneath all of that stuff. 

Getting Your Life Back Through Decluttering

Several major transformations took place during the nine-month-long process.

  • She regained control of her physical environment by purging anything that she no longer wanted, needed, or used, creating space for a simpler and more abundant life with less.
  • She reclaimed her own power by discovering a new sense of control over herself and her life, ultimately making room for the life she really wanted.
  • She rediscovered her self-worth, self-love, inner peace, contentment, and happiness.

Throughout the process of purging, she also learned how to:

  • Confront and talk about the deep-seated emotions of anger, resentment, frustration that had been building up and kept hidden for many years.
  • Reject and refuse to allow the negative, non-supportive environment that prevented her from accomplishing her decluttering goals. Instead, replacing them with a supportive team that would inspire and encourage her on the journey.
  • Learn to develop new skills, routines, and habits that would contribute to sustainable changes. 

“Good Luck with That!”

A few weeks into our decluttering sessions, I was introduced to her spouse for the first time.

She said: “Rita is here to help me declutter our home.”

He responded: “Good luck with that!”

To this day, those cruel, biting, and disempowering words still ring in my ears!

In that moment, I saw a woman who had heard this message many times before and felt so beaten down by a spouse who was betting against her success.

How could she possibly win at decluttering or anything else she set out to do? No wonder she felt incapable of doing this project on her own!

Those Were “Fighting Words!”

His disrespectful words lit a fire and passion within me to not only help this woman get her house back, but also to reclaim her power, self-respect, and belief in herself.

I was committed to having her reverse the real time cost of clutter.

Getting Started, Staying Motivated, and Winning the Decluttering Game

An overview of the process of this life-changing approach to decluttering:

  1. Establish ground rules for a safe, supportive, and judgment-free space that inspires and encourages weekly progress.
  2. Teach practical tools, tips, techniques to let go of excess that is not aligned with values and current lifestyle. 
  3. Practice techniques for overcoming obstacles and breaking free of barriers that slow down the decision-making process.
  4. Take “before pictures” and “after pictures” at every decluttering session.
  5. Complete the initial intake form/questionnaire to better understand the impact of physical and emotional clutter on health, well-being, relationships, productivity, and overall happiness.
  6. Monitor the level of weekly commitment and keep a written journal.
  7. Create a written vision statement for life after decluttering.
  8. Create a blueprint/roadmap of all areas in the home to be decluttered. Prioritize them in order of importance and impact.
  9. Establish decluttering calendar with specific dates, times, goals for each session.
  10. Document weekly progress, noting whether goals were achieved. If not, why not? What might be done differently the next time: lessons learned.

Room by Room, Session by Session, We Began to See Real Transformation and Results

As she grew to trust me, she openly talked about the emotions that she had been denying and attempting to hide for many years. Those feelings of anger, resentment, frustration, and disrespectbegan to melt away and feelings of gratitude and hope started to creep into our conversation.

She came to realize that as she not only lost control of her house and the clutter within it, she has also lost her own power and self-respect.

With each bag of discarded trash, with each box of donated stuff, she was not only letting go of the physical clutter, but she was also letting go of the mental cutter that had been the real roadblock to any possibility of success that she was looking for. 

What was your initial roadblock to successfully declutter your home and life? Is your story one of success?

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