Clutter Detox

Welcome and congratulations in taking on this detox to help maintain a better you!

Before we begin, it’s important to remember that you are already who you wish to become! Yes, that’s right; from the exact moment when you created the idea of change, and saw yourself as that better version of yourself, you became that better version. You’ve seen and know how that version acts, how they think, and how they live. You now only need to follow the appropriate actions to keep on that path. We are all constantly changing; how we handle situations and emotions, what we believe to be true and how we live our lives. We have highs and we have lows. If we can remember this constant impermanence, through those changes we’ll have a much better outlook on this journey. Before we start, I’d like you to sit for a moment and close your eyes. Picture a movie screen or a crystal ball with the way you’d like to see yourself in the future. Sit for however long you’d like to watch and continue reading after you’ve done so.

 

Clutter Detox! This detox is focused on how to help you un-clutter your home, office, life and mind. About 6 years ago, I began to see how many items I cluttered my life, home and work space with, which in turn was really cluttering my mind. I was once told that your work space/living area is a good reflection of yourself and boy was I a freakin’ mess! So I began taking steps that could help me let go of some of those things I was holding onto. In turn, I let go of much more. Since this is a 31-day detox, I’d like to make a list of things you could do each day, accompanied by a brief explanation as to why it may help you keep in the right direction. Don’t feel pressured to do any of these things if you are not ready. You are on your own path and will move at the pace that works best for you. You’re the master of your own mind and these are wonderful tools that can help you follow your desired path.

Day 1

First, look at your life. What is your clutter? Is it clothes, art supplies, papers, snow globes? Take a walk and write down all of these areas. This is to become familiar with what you have and want to target. Could take 5 minutes or 3 hours. That’s it – day one complete!

Day 2

Time to grab two trash bags. Set a timer on your phone or just watch the clock for the next 13 minutes. Press start and get to work by filling up both bags as fast as possible, one being trash and the other for donations. The goal is to have both bags filled by the end of the 13 minutes.

Day 3

Choose something on your list (start small, instead of the whole kitchen choose three or four cabinets.) Go to it and make 3 piles; keep, maybe keep, and donate/trash. Before you start to sort, make a rule that anything that goes into the donate/trash pile can not come out. Remember, the more you let go the less you have to go through next time. (A good way to decide what to keep and let go of is to ask yourself, “Do I need this right now? Do I use this? Would I be okay without this? You’ll know what pile to put it in.) Do as many places on your list as you can handle.

 

Day 4

(Continue to work through the list) Take all your clothes on hangers and put the hangers all facing inwards direction (If you do not have access to hangers you can put the cloths in one space.) After you wear and wash the item, return it to the hanger and face it the opposite direction (or put them some where else, if not on hangers.) Set a time limit (1 month, 2 months, 6 months, etc. Choose shorter times for speedier results) and say, “By the end of this time whatever clothes are still facing inwards I will donate or give away.” This exercise will help you physically see what you’re holding onto and don’t really put to use. You can do the same for your office, kitchen, or workspace.

Day 5

(Continue to work through the list) Take today to write down how you feel about your progress with the detox. Next we’ll jump into a “Thought detox”. Just like objects, thoughts can clutter our minds, so today we’re going to start sorting them out just like the physical items. Start by writing down the types of thoughts that occupy your mind (It could be music playing in your head constantly, or thoughts about how people have hurt or irritated you, or all the chores that need to get done.) For each write down a way you think could help un-clutter these thoughts. For music, you may want to drive home in silence without the radio on. With negative thoughts about how people have hurt you, instead say, “I forgive them for hurting me as I hope that anyone who I may have hurt or harmed can forgive me.” For thoughts about chores, make a list of what needs to be done and let it go until you are ready to do them. Like items can clutter up our space, so to can our thoughts clutter up our mind. Sort through it, see what’s worth keeping and get rid of the rest. Work it out with yourself. Once you do, the thought may come back. If so, just gently remind yourself that you’ve already worked this out and it’s just habit that brings it back. Just choose one or two from the list and work those out.

Day 6

(Continue to work through the list)

Pick one! Choose one that you can fit your life best at this moment

  • Day without phone, no internet, and no TV.(Keep a tally of ever time you reach for your phone.)
  • Day in nature (See how little you need to be happy.)
  • Day of limited talking (This means little to no speech. This is to help quite your mind down.)

Day 7

Take a day to reflect on your progress. How’ve you been doing? Can you be doing more to help yourself?

Day 8

(Continue to work through the list) For the remainder of the detox work through your list or until it’s complete. This is a big day, but a very important one. Let go of something you have attachment to. It doesn’t have to be something that holds very sentimental value, but just something you have a hard time thinking of letting go of (One day I was riding my bicycle down a hill. I looked down at my shoes and thought, “I love these shoes so much.” I knew then my attachment to these shoes was unhealthy for me. I needed to let go of them, not because I loved them but because the thought of not having them was difficult. So with a swift kick of my feet I sent those shoes flying. In retrospect, I should of donated them instead of littering. For the next few hours, it really bothered me that I got rid of those shoes – so much so that I went back to the spot to try and find them but they where gone, thankfully. This really opened the door for me and made the next steps I took much easier.) You can do this anytime with anything, just think, “Can I let go of Blank?” The next step is your choice.

 

Day 9

Give something of yours to someone else. (I found that it is much easier to give something to someone in need. For example, I was riding my bicycle down the road and saw a friend who was trying to fix his bike. He told me he didn’t have a wrench. Luckily, I had one in my backpack. We fixed the bike and I told him to keep the wrench. When he inquired why I replied, “I’ll find another one if I need it”.) Watch and listen to others around you. Chances are, you’ll come across someone in need. Plus, kindness is contagious – so pass it on!

Day 10

Today try to use as little as possible. It could be that you’ll use the same plate and silverware for all your meals or you don’t go out for coffee, lunch or dinner. Learn how little we actually need to make things work and how much we use that doesn’t have to be used.

Day 11

You may find you have memories attached to a lot of objects. A good way to keep track of these is to make a memory box. Take a shoe box or plastic bin and put in the items you’d like to hold onto. If something doesn’t fit, this may be incentive for you to let it go. (I personally found that if I let go of the item, it doesn’t mean I’m letting go of the memory or how special it was. Writing down in a journal can help too. Instead of keeping the bottle opener from my sister’s wedding, let me write down the memory of the wedding and let go of this bottle opener I never use or need.) These things may seem difficult to do, but remember: there is no pressure, just ideas.

Day 12

Lets do a bit of research and inspiration to keep us educated and motivated. Here is a quick read with some other links to helpful blogs about simplify and decluttering your home.

Ahh The Simple Life

Day 13

Pick one! Choose one that you can fit your life best at this moment

  • Day without phone, no internet, and no TV.(Keep a tally of ever time you reach for your phone.)
  • Day in nature (See how little you need to be happy.)
  • Day of limited talking (This means little to no speech. This is to help quite your mind down.)

Day 14

Start your listed areas of clutter from the beginning. Go through and sort them into there 3 piles just as before. Remember to make the rule that if it goes into the Donate/Trash pile you can not take it back out.

Day 15

(For the remainder of the detox work through your list again, until it’s complete.)

Take today to write down how you feel about your progress with the detox. And complete a “Thought detox” just as we did on Day 5.

Day 16

Clutter doesn’t only come in a physical or mental form but also in a electronic form. Spend today cleaning up your computer, laptop, phone or any due bills if possible. If you don’t finish, don’t sweat it, we’ll come back to it.

 

Day 17

Today try to use even less than before on day 10.

 

Day 18

Take a day to reflect on your progress. How’ve you been doing? Can you be doing more to help

yourself?

Day 19

Give something away! Just like Day 9.

 

Day 20

Pick one! Choose one that you can fit your life best at this moment.

  • Day without phone, no internet, and no TV.(Keep a tally of ever time you reach for your phone.)
  • Day in nature (See how little you need to be happy.)
  • Day of limited talking (This means little to no speech. This is to help quite your mind down.)

Day 21

Electronic detox, just like Day 16.

Day 22

Thought Detox, just like Day 5 and 15.

Day 23

Some helpful hints you may find handy.

Zen Habits

 

Day 24

Today use the absolute bear minimum of what you can. Less than Day 17!

 

Day 25

Take a day to reflect on your progress. How’ve you been doing? Can you be doing more to help yourself?

 

Day 26

Let go of something you have attachment to. Just like Day 8.

 

Day 27

Pick one! Choose one that you can fit your life best at this moment.

  • Day without phone, no internet, and no TV.(Keep a tally of ever time you reach for your phone.)
  • Day in nature (See how little you need to be happy.)
  • Day of limited talking (This means little to no speech. This is to help quite your mind down.)

Day 28

For the remained of the detox challenge yourself to not buy anything. Try to live off of what you have currently, if that means making the toilet paper last, you better make it last! If its your neighbors birthday, better give them an item from your procession! Morning coffee, best get to bed early or make it yourself if you have any. As extreme as this day sounds, its important to learn how little we actually need to make things work and how much we use that doesn’t have to be used.

 

Day 29

Give something away! Just like Day 9.

Day 30

Thought Detox, just like Day 5, 15, and 22.

Day 31

YOU MADE IT! Today we learn the most important thing of all about keeping a balanced life, today we treat ourselves. Decluttering doesn’t always have to be about getting rid of things it’s a mind set. A learned perspective on what we actually need in our lives. I have many things I could be without but I know I can let them go at anytime now. I’ve learned how to be without and can now accept things into my life without feeling over whelmed, and when I do feel overwhelmed I simply remember what I learnt and let it go. So on that note I’m going to treat myself to something sweet. I hope this detox was helpful. If you want to continue the detox you can take the “One item a day” challenge were you try to give away one item a day, at the end of the year that’s 365 less items! You can also continue any of the daily exercise.

-Blake Aaron Bradley

Blake
Blake

About the Author:

 

Blake Aaron Bradley is an artist, graphic designer, sculptor, carpenter, and author.   Blake is well known across the country as one of the traveling gurus. He is an experienced Couch Surfing host and has welcomed over 60 travelers into his home and played an integral part in each of their journeys. Blake is the author of Jargon a Screen and is working on one of his newest projects, set for publication in the near future! When Blake isn’t taking over the world, he is tending to his beehive, teaching classes on bee preservation and working in his studio. Please visit him online, and follow his journey, as he helps spread the good vibes.

 

CHECK OUT THE FACEBOOK DETOX GROUP

 

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