Declutter your life
I know what you’re thinking….what exactly does it mean to declutter your life? Especially because as a mom I am constantly thinking about how I can declutter and clean my home. Also, I am caring for the needs of my family which oftentimes leaves very little time for myself. During this time of social unrest, a global pandemic, and social distancing I have done a lot of introspection. While stealing a rare moment of quiet I realized the similarities between a cluttered home and life.
For this article, a cluttered life is frazzled, all over the place, stressed, and in search of peace. Listen to me family….I have been there and it requires work to declutter your life but it can be done! So let’s get to work.
As a believer in Jesus Christ, I understand (but sometimes forget) that He is the ultimate giver of joy and peace. In my house whenever I see clutter or if the mail starts to pile up I get anxious and antsy because to me that represents disorder. The same is true in my personal life. If it is hard for me to concentrate or something is weighing heavy on my heart I feel very uneasy. As a result, I find it difficult to sleep, my joy tank takes a hit and I can find myself in a slump. The only way out is to go back to the beginning and that starts with my relationship with Christ.
The first step to decluttering your life is spending time with the one who loves you and knows you better than anyone else….your Heavenly Father. Prayer is simply communication with the Lord. Remember communication is a two-way street where both listening and speaking are important. Prayer allows you to focus on your creator and not your circumstances. Many times a cluttered life is the result of us holding onto excess baggage, meaning worries, fears, unmet expectations, and regret.
1 Peter 5:7 says “Cast all your anxiety on him because he cares for you.
Get rid of the things that are stealing your joy and focus on the one who cares for every part of your life.
Look at the birds of the air; they do not sow or reap or store away in barns, and yet your heavenly Father feeds them. Are you not much more valuable than they? Matthew 6:26
Let that sink in!
But seek first his kingdom and his righteousness, and all these things will be given to you as well. Matthew 6:33
What are things? Oftentimes we deduce things down to material things only, however; peace of mind, the ability to sleep, and confidence that He is faithful to His word are promises that far outweigh any material gain.
Isaiah 26:3 says You will keep in perfect peace those whose minds are steadfast because they trust in you.
Mamas….be encouraged he has you, your family, your circumstances in his hand. Let’s exchange our worries for his peace and the cares of this world for his promises. Spend time reading your Bible find scripture that speaks about the greatness and goodness of our God. Take those scriptures and meditate on them and use them as personal prayers. Let’s be free!
If you want to declutter your life it doesn’t occur by chance it’s intentional. Intentional means deliberate or with a purpose. As moms, we must be intentional about our peace of mind just as we are intentional about keeping a clean home. We have all heard about the importance of self-care but let’s dive a bit deeper because this goes beyond a manicure and pedicure. How do we become intentional about ridding our personal lives of clutter? I believe it requires two simple actions: prioritizing and learning the art of saying “no”.
My priorities happen to align with my two of my core values: faith and family. As a result, I prioritize my quiet time (prayer and reading my Word), the well-being of my family, my health, and personal development. I challenge you to sit down and think about your priorities. Once you have them outlined, make decisions about what you can keep on your plate and what you can release. Now that you have identified your priorities we can complete the following steps:
Practical steps for intentional living:
- Identify your priorities
- Designate a specific time to complete the tasks associated with your priorities
- Develop a plan with action steps to complete your outlined priorities
Practical example: I prioritize my health. I know that I am at my best in the morning so I set my alarm to complete my 30-45 minute workout for early in the morning. I make sure that I designate 4 days/week to exercise. My workout plan is structured by an exercise app.
The next component of being intentional is the ability to say “no”. For me to stay focused on what matters most I must be willing to say “no” to things that are secondary or not as important. As moms and women, we are wired to be people pleasers. We tend to take on additional responsibilities, spread ourselves thin, and become irritable due to self-imposed stress. It is ok to say “no” to that do not align with your priorities, especially if they create stress or are done out of obligation not joy. It is time to focus on what matters most with great intention. When we do we can declutter our lives and live free!
Yup…..the the dreaded “d” word….discipline. Discipline means to train oneself to do something in a controlled and habitual way. To declutter your life, you must be disciplined. We can implement the two steps listed above but if they are not coupled with consistent action then you will be spinning your wheels. I am speaking from experience!! I always knew that I needed to spend time in prayer and the Word daily but I would constantly hit the snooze button or say I would do it in the evening. Yeah right….that never happened. On the days when I did not have quiet time, it showed in my actions and words. If I did prioritize those moments with my heavenly Father then I had to make some decisions and become disciplined in my behavior.
Discipline is hard because it will cause you to sacrifice some things and make tough choices but the result is always worth the work. So mama what areas of your life need an extra boost of discipline so that you can have peace of mind. It can be as simple as preparing the night before you have to leave for work so that you are not rushing out of the house panicked and sweaty. It could also be deciding to organize your finances and commit to a budget so that you can make informed money decisions. Let’s identify those areas, make a game plan, and commit to executing that game plan. Discipline eliminates clutter because it only allows for the most important things to be important!
As I write this post it is both personal and convicting. There are always areas in which we can grow and become better. I am right there with you. I am committed to increasing my time in prayer, being more intentional, and exercising discipline to make sure that my spiritual, mental, and emotional life remains clutter-free. Let us declutter our life because it means a life of freedom, rest, and peace.
I am cheering you on!