” It’s a good time for some cleaning.
Let’s sweep out our self-doubt and worries.
Let’s wipe away the dust
And forget our unhappy memories and regrets.
Let’s polish our hopes and dreams until they sparkle anew.”
Have your thoughts been turning to spring cleaning and clearing the clutter? This time of opening our windows wide and letting the fresh air stream in is refreshing and energizing. Even the work of cleaning, sorting and clearing our clutter can provide a feeling of newness. Take a deep breath, feel the sunshine, the breezes and the promise of new beginnings.
We may be held back from fully feeling, seeing and enjoying springtime because it is also time to do some spring cleaning of long held emotions. Just like the clutter in our closets and the things we no longer wear or need, the clutter of feelings we collect in our minds can really pile up and crowd out what we are searching and longing for.
Think of sorting through your closet. You may be looking at clothes that are too tight and confining. Maybe…some are too loose. It could be that there are items long held onto that are not in style anymore. Some clothes just might not fit who you are in this present time. How will you decide what stays and what goes?
If you are holding onto some outdated self-doubt, take another look at why you are holding onto it. Our self-doubt can be an old message that we keep out of our fear of risking believing in ourselves. Self-doubt lives in our “what ifs”, that place of second guessing our judgment and abilities to make healthy choices.
It’s All In the Letting Go
When we clean out the clutter in our closet, we must decide what to Keep, Discard, Store, or Give Away. You may also have a Can’t Make Up My Mind pile. This happens in clearing the clutter of our emotions too! The big decision centers on what we are ready and willing to part with and let go of.
Are you ready to let go of that 20 year old dress that doesn’t fit anymore? What memories does the wearing of this dress evoke? Do you think back nostalgically to a happy and fulfilling time or painfully to a sad, lonely and anxious time? What will you be giving up in the process of letting go?
Now it’s time to decide not only what you will keep, but what you will discard. When we are letting go of long held feelings, we need to ask how they are supporting us or not supporting us. Another way of thinking about it, is to ask yourself: Do I Own It? Or Does It Own Me?
Have the self-defeating messages and negative thoughts cluttered in your head taken control of you? When our emotions own us in this way, they rob us of the ability to make our own choices, the ones that will support and guide us. When these feeling own us, we may live in a world of anger, regret, bitterness and self-doubt. This is also the place of living as a victim without being able to see any way out.
In owning our emotions, we can look at this clutter of messages and take control of deciding what we will keep, discard, store or give away. For example; if you are holding onto anger, just ask yourself: “Is my anger guiding my decisions and how I function in my world or am I able to own what I am feeling without letting it cloud my judgment and what I really want for myself?”
Even if we have a Can’t Make Up My Mind pile, know that by being self compassionate, that answer will come too, in time.
This template of letting go, whether it is that old dress or those old feelings that keep us stuck is universal. It can be applied to whatever life stage we are in. The key questions to ask in this process of letting go are:
1.How are the emotions that I am stuck in helping or hurting me?
2.What will I need to let go of in order to move forward?
3.What will I need to grieve in this letting go?
Hanging onto self-doubt and worries of “what if” can keep us immobilized in finding that new job or new beginning in retirement. The letting go will be the process of understanding how you may have used that self-doubt and anxiety as protection from the risk of believing in yourself. Grieving what was familiar, a job or career that offered you structure, reliability and stability is the process towards moving on to a new beginning in your life.
The anger, resentment and grief of an ended relationship keeps us stuck in blame, guilt and judgment. There is no space for building a new life if these are the emotions that clutter our minds and decision making. It only heightens the pain of divorce and hampers the healing process.
As we throw open our windows and feel the refreshing breeze come into our homes, let’s also breathe in the fresh air of new beginnings. Spring clean the clutter of your emotions and discard what holds you back in the closed, confining and cold space of winter. Feel what happens when you own your feelings rather than them owning you! I can help you sort through the clutter!
I’d love to hear from you!