RELEASING SOUL CLUTTER
If you’re an empath or HSP like me, I probably don’t even need to tell you how crucial a clean and calming environment is for self care. Even if you’re not, mess and disarray can leave anyone feeling anxious and unfocused. There is a ton of information out there providing tips and tricks for decluttering your home or place of work, and while the benefits to getting organized and clearing your physical space are significant, I want to spend a little time talking about clearing your spiritual space and the importance of releasing soul clutter.
In Seasons of Being: Winter, we explored the blank state that our soul enters into when undergoing change and transition — when we let go of the familiar and are tasked with redefining and redesigning who we are and how we want to express ourselves. Like a seed germinating in the soil, it is in this void that we begin to hear the whispers of our spirit, where new perspectives, new interests, new desires, begin to reveal themselves, and new passion, new meaning, begins to emerge and grow in our hearts.
This got me thinking about the soil itself, and how important it is for that soil to be clean and pure and rich with nutrients in order to support the seed’s growth. If we are the seed, the soil is our environment — both externally and internally — and we, too, require space that will stimulate and accommodate our growth. This is why it is so essential that we take time to declutter regularly — to do some “weeding”, if you will — in order to keep ourselves primed to bloom and blossom in the world around us.
For only when we are willing to let go do we open ourselves up to gain.
Our natural state is to feel energized, joyful, and creative — in sync with our spirit and in the flow of the Universe.
Yet so often we find ourselves fettered to the endless demands of our jobs, our families, our social schedules, etc, that we are left with very little time (if any at all) for our own self care and maintenance.
We become scattered, forgetful, unfocused, indecisive and ineffective. We feel anxious, overwhelmed, frenzied, and we have difficulty sleeping. We feel uncomfortable in our own homes. We feel uncomfortable in our own skin. We lose step with our spirit and feel as though the Universe is suddenly moving against us because we become stagnated or blocked altogether by the clutter that builds up around and within us.
For when we are not tending our soil, weeds begin to grow.
On the surface, they look like the collection of junk mail that we are not going to read, the heaps of clothes that we no longer wear, the piles of papers that have covered our desks, the disarray in our kitchen cabinets, or the boxes of old trinkets that we haven’t used or looked at in ages spilling out of our closets.
But weeds can also be friends who habitually create drama, take advantage of or bail on us, an antagonizing boss or catty co-workers, family members who manipulate or shame us, or partners who don’t respect or value us.
On an energetic level, weeds manifest as our building frustrations, hurts, resentments, anger, self doubt — echoes of all the damaging comments made and negative self talk that accumulates and grows tangled and knotted inside of us.
In short, weeds are anything that take up space in our lives without serving or promoting our highest potential and greatest good.
Your place of work is meant to be a place where you feel productive and efficient. Your home is meant to be your sanctuary where you feel safe and at peace. Your friendships are meant to bring you happiness. Your family is meant to give you love. So where you find yourself feeling idle or distressed, or when you feel consistently depleted or put off in the company of certain people, it may be time to start tending your soil.
By releasing the negative energy in your life, you are ultimately creating space for new energy to come in; You are clearing energy that is blocked, moving energy that is stagnant, and thereby stepping back into the flow of the Universe and opening yourself up to new opportunity.
HOW TO RELEASE SOUL CLUTTER
- Start with your physical environment. Personally I find that when I declutter my physical environment first, removing distractions and creating space that I can be grounded and centered in, I am much better able to sort through my inner environment.
- It is okay to put distance between yourself and those who you recognize to be a negative influence in your life. Unless of course the relationship is so toxic that you want to end it completely, you don’t necessarily have to cut people out — sometimes you can’t — but that doesn’t mean you have to put yourself in their orbit or engage in their negative behavior either.
- Make to-do lists and take advantage of planners and schedulers. When you find yourself losing sleep trying to remember all the things you need to do the next day, give those thoughts a time and a place. You will rest easier knowing that everything is planned and written down.
- Journal. Putting your thoughts down on paper makes them tangible and therefore easier to explore and process. Even if you’re not inclined to do a lot of writing, bullet lists and brain dumps can be just as effective.
- Create a ritual for letting go. An easy and yet powerful ritual for letting go that I often use is to write down intrusive or self limiting thoughts on a piece of paper (or draw a signifier). Meditate on these thoughts for a moment and what positive thoughts you would like to replace them with. When you are ready, throw them into your fireplace, declaring that you no longer wish to have these thoughts taking up space in your mind. As they disappear in the flames, their energy returns to the Universe purified and potent with new energy. Draw that new energy in and say aloud the new thoughts. When the old thoughts begin to creep back (and they likely will at first) hold this image in your mind as a reminder; While we cannot literally erase our thoughts, we can replace them with new ones until the old ones eventually fade away on their own. (If you don’t have a fireplace, you can simply burn them (safely) with a candle or imagine performing the ritual instead.)
- Release with water ceremony. Take a trip to the beach and find a quiet spot away from noise and distraction. Watch the steady inhale-exhale of the ocean and try to match your own breath with it. You can even imagine that with each exhale you are letting go of what you wish to release and with each inhale you are welcoming in new energy to take its place. When you feel centered, write or draw what you wish to release in the sand. Allow yourself to feel whatever feelings come up for you, and as you watch the waves wash away what you have written, give gratitude for the lessons that you learned and ask the Universe for guidance and support in letting go of that which is no longer serving you. Again, if you are unable to go to the ocean, you can imagine doing this instead — ultimately it’s all about your intention.