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Out With the Old (Clutter), In With the New (Ideas)

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I spent the last day of 2011 in my office, but I wasn’t writing, setting goals or doing other literary-type things. My end-of-year task was rather boring and mundane–but one that can breed incredible, far-reaching results.

I purged my office.

For those with meticulously neat work areas, this makes no sense, because straightening your creative space is a five-minute task. For someone like me though, a “piler” from way back, this requires a full-on assault. One box of books went to my local library, several more are ready to sell or give away. Paper-filled trash bags went to the dump and ugly knick-knacks, broken doo-dads and random junk disappeared. I’m not quite finished, but I can already see–and feel–the results.

When I walk into my office now, I can breathe. Something about this newly excavated space opens up endless possibilities and frees my creativity.

As a reminder, I posted this sign by my computer:

Un-clutter Your Space to Un-clutter Your Mind

It’s a simple directive, but hard to achieve, especially if I ignore it. Clutter sneaks in and takes over much more than my desktop or office. It takes over my brain. A new idea pops into my head, but I say, “Wait. I have to straighten up my desk first. Then I’ll work on that.”

Except that I hate straightening, so the new idea gets pushed back under the pile of obligations. Before I know it, I’m trapped. I procrastinate. And then I make excuses. Which breeds guilt. Nothing gets done. It’s a nasty, vicious cycle.

Enough of that.

This year, I’m going to live differently. I want to be more creative in every area of my life. I want to explore new ideas, start new projects, investigate new possibilities. To begin, I’m letting go of the things that hold me back. Starting with my office clutter.

Care to join me? And if you have any tips on STAYING clutter-free, will you pass them on?

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    The Conversation

  1. Nancy Cohen says:

    I SO need to declutter my entire house. I started getting rid of a few things on ebay and craigslist but then it got too time consuming so I stopped. I have been weeding through the papers on my desk but there seems to be an ever present pile.

    • Connie Mann says:

      It never seems to stop, does it?? I know the feeling. But I also know how great it feels to see it all GONE! Keep going! I’m planning to do the same in my house.