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4 Ways to Declutter and Draw the Meditative Space Back Into Your Life

4 Ways to Declutter and Draw the Meditative Space Back Into Your Life

    Many of us have calm meditative spaces we retreat to whenever possible. Some may take a little effort to reach like a mountain top, the edge of a canyon, or the center of a field of flowers. Others are closer to home like a harbor view, seat in the garden surrounded by nature, or on the rooftop under the stars.

    These places are meant for escape and recharging yet it very often occurs that when we return back to our usual domains we’re drained almost immediately after walking through the door. Why? The claws of clutter or variations of it have us in a hold.

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    Clutter develops quickly, especially when there’s little time in our routine to keep things organized. It can also be a result of past accumulations from childhood that are stuffed in a loft, attic or basement but still have a knack for taking over homes. The good thing is even when the situation feels overwhelming it’s still possible to make a change.

    The key is simply making an effort to sift through everything by taking out sentimental tchotchkes and other belongings that haven’t been looked at for years and distinguishing between what is and what isn’t expendable.

    If this sounds easier said than done don’t fret. The following are a few mental exercises to keep in mind to help you through the process and hopefully draw the meditative space back into your life.

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    1. Lightening the load

    This is it. This is the main focus because — let’s face it — in one way or another our possessions weigh us down and hold us back from some of life’s biggest decisions. For example, what if your job offered you the chance to move to a foreign country for a year or two but because of everything you’ve amassed it’s not possible. Or maybe you’ve wanted to take time off and travel but you need your income to pay for your oversized apartment which is partly acting as a storage room.

    When the focal point is getting the most out of life the adrenaline starts pumping and downsizing comes a lot easier. Within a few short minutes you may discover emotional attachments to objects that once felt strong no longer exist. This means you’re taking the first steps towards lightening the load.

    2. You can’t take it with you

    Most of the time when we’re thinking about the future it’s regarding money, building a family, or making some type of investment. We don’t usually consider something like what’s going to happen to our belongings when our time is up in this world.

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    It’s a moribund thought but the truth is when it’s our time to go we can’t take that box of high school love letters or stitched up sweater with us. That’s why a good exercise for downsizing is to contemplate what ten or twenty things to put aside if you could take them with.

    Doing so will help distinguish between nonessentials and what’s truly important.

    3. Be an example

    Many of us know how hard it is to scale things back because we’ve tried it over and over with both success and failure. At the core, though, is the desire to let it all go because we understand what a life changing experience it could be.

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    Take hold of this aspiration and be an example for others by following through on your convictions to clean out the vault. It can release personal burdens and show others if you can do it they can too.

    4. Consider your health

    Wrapped up in all of this is the state of our health as too much clutter breads dust and taints indoor air. It also creates unnecessary stress, especially when there are regular daily pressures from work and relationships to deal with.

    That’s why if you need some extra inspiration to get through those boxes, bins, and closets consider how much happier and healthier you’d be after downsizing and de-cluttering your humble abode.

    In the end you’ll be able to draw strength from this peaceful environment and use it for tackling some of life’s other challenges.

    (Photo credit: Tall Pebble Stack via Shutterstock)

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    Last Updated on January 21, 2020

    The Best Way to Create a Vision for the Life You Want

    The Best Way to Create a Vision for the Life You Want

    Creating a vision for your life might seem like a frivolous, fantastical waste of time, but it’s not: creating a compelling vision of the life you want is actually one of the most effective strategies for achieving the life of your dreams. Perhaps the best way to look at the concept of a life vision is as a compass to help guide you to take the best actions and make the right choices that help propel you toward your best life.

    your vision of where or who you want to be is the greatest asset you have

      Why You Need a Vision

      Experts and life success stories support the idea that with a vision in mind, you are more likely to succeed far beyond what you could otherwise achieve without a clear vision. Think of crafting your life vision as mapping a path to your personal and professional dreams. Life satisfaction and personal happiness are within reach. The harsh reality is that if you don’t develop your own vision, you’ll allow other people and circumstances to direct the course of your life.

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      How to Create Your Life Vision

      Don’t expect a clear and well-defined vision overnight—envisioning your life and determining the course you will follow requires time, and reflection. You need to cultivate vision and perspective, and you also need to apply logic and planning for the practical application of your vision. Your best vision blossoms from your dreams, hopes, and aspirations. It will resonate with your values and ideals, and will generate energy and enthusiasm to help strengthen your commitment to explore the possibilities of your life.

      What Do You Want?

      The question sounds deceptively simple, but it’s often the most difficult to answer. Allowing yourself to explore your deepest desires can be very frightening. You may also not think you have the time to consider something as fanciful as what you want out of life, but it’s important to remind yourself that a life of fulfillment does not usually happen by chance, but by design.

      It’s helpful to ask some thought-provoking questions to help you discover the possibilities of what you want out of life. Consider every aspect of your life, personal and professional, tangible and intangible. Contemplate all the important areas, family and friends, career and success, health and quality of life, spiritual connection and personal growth, and don’t forget about fun and enjoyment.

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      Some tips to guide you:

      • Remember to ask why you want certain things
      • Think about what you want, not on what you don’t want.
      • Give yourself permission to dream.
      • Be creative. Consider ideas that you never thought possible.
      • Focus on your wishes, not what others expect of you.

      Some questions to start your exploration:

      • What really matters to you in life? Not what should matter, what does matter.
      • What would you like to have more of in your life?
      • Set aside money for a moment; what do you want in your career?
      • What are your secret passions and dreams?
      • What would bring more joy and happiness into your life?
      • What do you want your relationships to be like?
      • What qualities would you like to develop?
      • What are your values? What issues do you care about?
      • What are your talents? What’s special about you?
      • What would you most like to accomplish?
      • What would legacy would you like to leave behind?

      It may be helpful to write your thoughts down in a journal or creative vision board if you’re the creative type. Add your own questions, and ask others what they want out of life. Relax and make this exercise fun. You may want to set your answers aside for a while and come back to them later to see if any have changed or if you have anything to add.

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      What Would Your Best Life Look Like?

      Describe your ideal life in detail. Allow yourself to dream and imagine, and create a vivid picture. If you can’t visualize a picture, focus on how your best life would feel. If you find it difficult to envision your life 20 or 30 years from now, start with five years—even a few years into the future will give you a place to start. What you see may surprise you. Set aside preconceived notions. This is your chance to dream and fantasize.

      A few prompts to get you started:

      • What will you have accomplished already?
      • How will you feel about yourself?
      • What kind of people are in your life? How do you feel about them?
      • What does your ideal day look like?
      • Where are you? Where do you live? Think specifics, what city, state, or country, type of community, house or an apartment, style and atmosphere.
      • What would you be doing?
      • Are you with another person, a group of people, or are you by yourself?
      • How are you dressed?
      • What’s your state of mind? Happy or sad? Contented or frustrated?
      • What does your physical body look like? How do you feel about that?
      • Does your best life make you smile and make your heart sing? If it doesn’t, dig deeper, dream bigger.

      It’s important to focus on the result, or at least a way-point in your life. Don’t think about the process for getting there yet—that’s the next stepGive yourself permission to revisit this vision every day, even if only for a few minutes. Keep your vision alive and in the front of your mind.

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      Plan Backwards

      It may sound counter-intuitive to plan backwards rather than forwards, but when you’re planning your life from the end result, it’s often more useful to consider the last step and work your way back to the first. This is actually a valuable and practical strategy for making your vision a reality.

      • What’s the last thing that would’ve had to happen to achieve your best life?
      • What’s the most important choice you would’ve had to make?
      • What would you have needed to learn along the way?
      • What important actions would you have had to take?
      • What beliefs would you have needed to change?
      • What habits or behaviors would you have had to cultivate?
      • What type of support would you have had to enlist?
      • How long will it have taken you to realize your best life?
      • What steps or milestones would you have needed to reach along the way?

      Now it’s time to think about your first step, and the next step after that. Ponder the gap between where you are now and where you want to be in the future. It may seem impossible, but it’s quite achievable if you take it step-by-step.

      It’s important to revisit this vision from time to time. Don’t be surprised if your answers to the questions, your technicolor vision, and the resulting plans change. That can actually be a very good thing; as you change in unforeseeable ways, the best life you envision will change as well. For now, it’s important to use the process, create your vision, and take the first step towards making that vision a reality.

      Featured photo credit: Matt Noble via unsplash.com

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