Spring Cleaning Series #2: 9 Questions to Ask While Decluttering
If you’re like most people, you get motivated to clean out your closet, make some headway, and then you run right into a brick wall. Before you know it, you think of a million other things you should and could be doing and your decluttering project is suddenly abandoned. What just happened? You most likely came across an Undecided item.
I should get rid of this tea cup set. I should keep this tea cup set. Someone else could use it. Maybe one day I’ll use it. Maybe my sister will want it. But I don’t want her to know I don’t want it. The mental ping-pong goes on and on and we become completely exhausted. What we don’t realize is that the mind is overcompensating for our emotions. Undecided items bring up conflicting emotions. If we would just feel into them instead of trying to think our way out of them, amazing progress and healing could be made.
Deciding on undecided items is the ultimate challenge in clearing clutter. Clutter is anything that no longer serves your highest and best interest. You should love or lovingly use everything in your home. But that’s not always easy to determine. Clearing clutter is a very subjective process that ironically requires a great deal of objectivity.
If you’re struggling with an Undecided item, the indecision is a result of unconscious emotions around the item. The item is pulling some emotional triggers. There’s more to it than meets they eye. This is when self-inquiry is necessary. Start asking yourself these questions:
What am I feeling right now?
Is the feeling positive or negative? Light or heavy? Or both.
What memories does this item bring up?
Who gave it to me?
Why did I originally buy it?
Who does it remind me of?
Do I feel guilty getting rid of this item? If so, why?
What time of life was I in when I purchased it?
Get to the root of why you are hanging on to an item. What you thought was just an old coffee mug may actually be a reservoir of past emotions relating to an ex that needs to be released. Or maybe the green strapless dress with the price tag on it conjures up guilt for buying things that are on sale and never wearing them. Until acknowledged, the energy behind these items will continue in your energy field and linger in your closet like a live wire.
With Undecided items, if you still can’t get to the root of why you’re inclined to hang on to it, that’s okay too. It will come back around for review the next round of decluttering. By then, you might have new insight or be in a place of letting it go. Sometimes we simply need more time before letting something go that is emotionally sensitive. Like everything in life, we hold on to it until becomes easier not to.
One approach is to pack undecided items in a box and store them. Within a year, revisit the items and see if you’re still undecided. Most likely you won’t be. You’ll wonder why you felt a need to hang on to them this long since you forgot you even had them. Maybe the story around the item has changed or no longer has a charge. When the emotions around an item are neutralized, the undecided becomes an easy decision to keep or let go.