Article written for Step Into Your Power column by Tommi Hanley.
You know that itch you get every spring? When you look around at the stuff you’ve collected over the winter and feel an intense desire to jettison much of it from your home? Perhaps it’s the virtual clutter on your computer that is bogging you down more than the overflowing “miscellaneous” drawer in your kitchen, or the realization that there will be strawberries this year if you just took a few hours to pull the weeds from the garden. No matter where the accumulation of excess exists, when we need to make space for something new to arrive, we clean house.
When my iMac crashed recently (for the first time in the seven years since its purchase), I was mildly amused. In the previous few days I’d been contemplating how badly my computer needed a housecleaning. I had been putting off the onerous task of going through each folder to decide what should go or stay. Just one glitch in a newly downloaded incompatible program swept everything away – except the important files I had backed up on a stick.
I made the decision to reformat rather than search out someone to rescue years of memories sitting on my hard drive. Like the Zen monk too attached to his possessions who thanks his fellow monks for burning down his hut and his belongings, I was grateful for the liberation from too many ideas and projects, pictures and old letters that were no longer related to the person I am, or the path my life has taken.
Without the data, I no longer have the prompts that keep me tied to the past. This got me thinking about the way we hoard mental concepts along with our physical belongings. What objects and ideas do we hang onto that no longer reflect the person we’ve become? Just as data and detritus can be released to free up our energy and focus, so can outmoded beliefs that prevent us from seeing things as they are.
Without a touchstone to our past, can we be more present? Would we see others and ourselves in a truer light without the preconceptions built on past experience? We could save ourselves a great deal of wasted indignation of a world not meeting our needs if we stopped obscuring reality with our mental projections and focused on the current moment. Instead of trying to control our experience for the sake of comfort or convenience, we could learn to let it affect us deeply enough to create an internal shift and generate a new perspective.
That would mean surrendering who we think we are and what we believe the world owes us. It would mean recognizing that we exist as conscious beings not to repeat patterns ad infinitum but to be awakened to greater awareness through each encounter. It would require humility on our part, accepting that the universe, in its infinite beneficence, constantly puts before us the lessons we most need to learn. It would mean always making room for something precious and new to arrive to stir the soul.
So if you’re feeling stuck or stagnant today, or overwhelmed or unclear about your next step, clean your house. Rearrange your furniture. Weed the garden. Finish up that task list you’ve been avoiding. Disrupt one habit today by doing something different. Clarity will come as you clear the clutter.
Bonita Kay Summers, owner of Spirit Kelowna Wellness (www.spiritkelowna.com), has over 30 years of experience as a psychic life and business coach and certified crisis counsellor. She works with clients to transform limiting subconscious beliefs and habits into personal and professional success. Bonita is a sought-after motivational speaker, transformational workshop facilitator, and yin yoga instructor, blending neuroscience, quantum physics, wisdom teachings, humour, and personal insights to offer memorable and inspiring presentations.