Writing a List of the Things You Love

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I want to share something with you. I have been writing a lot about scheduling and being organized for the last few weeks in my newsletters. Both of these two things are so integral to opening the doors to your creative self.

However, that then gets me thinking about being TOO organized and TOO structured and so I come back to this ritual; Writing a List of the Things I Love. Below, I share this ritual that was given to me through several different coaches over the years. It is very simple, yet very profound.

About every 6 months or so, I will come back to this ritual and explore what I am noticing. It is about finding JOY that is already present in your daily life. A ritual to help you to notice those little things in your life that just light you up, make you happy and bring you peace. They are very, very simple things that you do already.

What if it was that easy? To find the joy and simplicity in what you do already and bring that to the forefront of your days.
Here are the steps for the ritual of writing a list of the things you love.

1. Get out your journal and a favorite pen or pencil
2. Get into a comfortable spot
3. Plan out 20 minutes for your time to write
4. List out every single thing that you LOVE to do…big, small, crazy, comfortable…anything that brings you joy
5. If you hear that voice in your head telling you something negative, let it pass. This is YOUR list. Everything that is important to you can be listed there. You are safe.
6. Once you are finished writing, read back though your list and bask in the joys that are a part of you
7. Close your journal
8. Later, open that journal up again and add more to your list at any time
9. When your journal is open again, circle the top three things on your list
10. Choose one of the things from your circled list. Do that thing as many times in the coming week as you can.
11. Enjoy the beautiful things in life that bring you joy! They are important. YOU are important.

Number your list 1-50. Really dig in and find 50 things that bring you joy. It might seem daunting at first, but stick with it! If you get 25 things written, and need to take some time away, do that. Then, as you go through your days, see what comes up while noticing all of the things in a day that bring you joy.
When I first created my list, I began in my journal it was daunting to list 50 things! Then, as the days went by and I would notice another moment of joy, I would write on whatever was at hand; a sticky note, a napkin, a nearby notebook!. I then brought all of those thoughts together into one location, one big list.

I discovered that the things on my list were anything from petting the cat, sitting and having a cup of tea, walking in nature, practicing yoga…reading. Those very simple things that you might think, sheesh, I won’t put THAT on the list. Your mind might sneak in and start to tell you your ideas a silly, but you are nudged to notice that that activity brings you JOY! So put that on your list!

Take some time out to discover what brings you true joy. Seek out the moments that bring you back to who you truly are. Revel in the little activities that bring you back to your own unique center.

I would love to hear what you discover!

Susan
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De-Clutter to Make Room for the New

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De-cluttering to Make room for the New

I took some time to de-clutter my home recently.  I kept the de-cluttering simple…just two kid’s art supply cupboards.  That ought to be simple, right?  Let me tell you a bit about these cupboards. They contain all of the wonderful supplies my children used to create while growing up. Stickers, pens, paints, paper, odds and ends, glue…do you have a cupboard like that?

My children still go to these cupboards from time to time to get a glue stick here, a piece of paper, a marker, or a crayon. But they are moving in to different types of creating and need the materials in these cupboards less and less, *sigh*…

As I went through each cupboard, I took a moment to look at some of the supplies within and remembered so many of the projects that were created! I got to thinking about relationships and about how each of us in the family is so different at each stage of our lives.  There was glitter from creating amazing cards for grandparents and friends, old coloring books with scribbles, scratch board with names written in a lovely youthful penmanship and a letter from a trip the boys took to the pumpkin patch from Grandpa!

Continuing my “de-cluttering”, I pulled everything from the cupboards out onto the floor. I took a look at what to save, what to dump and what might be used by other children (Goodwill). When noticing the millions of markers, I discovered that many of them were dried out. But the crayons remained a steadfast reminder of past projects and will last forever in the coffee tin where they will remain. Lots of dried out glue and yellowing paper was in there…four trash bags full!

It was easier than I thought to get rid of the old “junk”. I must have picked just the right time to go through these cupboards. No old nostalgia to hold me back (because sometimes, the old feelings and emotional “attachment” to stuff can make the de-cluttering task take a bit longer than planned!). Plus, the cupboards were not being emptied entirely, just a clearing out of the old and unused to make room for the new.

Here is my list for de-cluttering to make room for the new:

  1. Overwhelm-Many, many places need to be de-cluttered! I pick out all of the places in my house that need to be de-cluttered. I write each room on its own note card. Then, I put the cards into a stack and set them aside.
  2. Allow the overwhelm of SO many tasks to dissipate by taking a walk and leaving the cards (above) out of my sight for a few days.
  3. Come back to the card/lists and choose ONE location. Circle ONE small space within that room or area to focus on. Keep the task small and do-able (How long will this de-cluttering take?)
  4. Look through the weekly schedule and pick a time-slot to complete the de-cluttering task.
  5. Set the date/time into your calendar. Start small so that the job will be completed within the allotted time-frame.
  6. De-clutter! Clear out that space!
  7. Step back to look at your newly cleaned out and organized space
  8. Celebrate!

Now I can see that the cupboards hold just the supplies we need for the “now” of our lives. They are all so much easier to access for future projects. This also creates a sense of peace for me as I know just what is behind each cupboard door.

De-cluttering small spaces brings in a calming. A clearing away of that which is no longer needed and an opening to the possibilities for the future is gained. Breathing and enjoying this moment. Then, on to the next space to be cleared that is listed on my note cards. I wonder which it will be…
What will you de-clutter this week?

De-Clutter to Make Room for the New

IMG_5192 IMG_5193 IMG_5194 IMG_5195

 

De-cluttering to Make room for the New

I took some time to de-clutter my home recently.  I kept the de-cluttering simple…just two kid’s art supply cupboards.  That ought to be simple, right?  Let me tell you a bit about these cupboards. They contain all of the wonderful supplies my children used to create while growing up. Stickers, pens, paints, paper, odds and ends, glue…do you have a cupboard like that?

My children still go to these cupboards from time to time to get a glue stick here, a piece of paper, a marker, or a crayon. But they are moving in to different types of creating and need the materials in these cupboards less and less, *sigh*…

As I went through each cupboard, I took a moment to look at some of the supplies within and remembered so many of the projects that were created! I got to thinking about relationships and about how each of us in the family is so different at each stage of our lives.  There was glitter from creating amazing cards for grandparents and friends, old coloring books with scribbles, scratch board with names written in a lovely youthful penmanship and a letter from a trip the boys took to the pumpkin patch from Grandpa!

Continuing my “de-cluttering”, I pulled everything from the cupboards out onto the floor. I took a look at what to save, what to dump and what might be used by other children (Goodwill). When noticing the millions of markers, I discovered that many of them were dried out. But the crayons remained a steadfast reminder of past projects and will last forever in the coffee tin where they will remain. Lots of dried out glue and yellowing paper was in there…four trash bags full!

It was easier than I thought to get rid of the old “junk”. I must have picked just the right time to go through these cupboards. No old nostalgia to hold me back (because sometimes, the old feelings and emotional “attachment” to stuff can make the de-cluttering task take a bit longer than planned!). Plus, the cupboards were not being emptied entirely, just a clearing out of the old and unused to make room for the new.

Here is my list for de-cluttering to make room for the new:

  1. Overwhelm-Many, many places need to be de-cluttered! I pick out all of the places in my house that need to be de-cluttered. I write each room on its own note card. Then, I put the cards into a stack and set them aside.
  2. Allow the overwhelm of SO many tasks to dissipate by taking a walk and leaving the cards (above) out of my sight for a few days.
  3. Come back to the card/lists and choose ONE location. Circle ONE small space within that room or area to focus on. Keep the task small and do-able (How long will this de-cluttering take?)
  4. Look through the weekly schedule and pick a time-slot to complete the de-cluttering task.
  5. Set the date/time into your calendar. Start small so that the job will be completed within the allotted time-frame.
  6. De-clutter! Clear out that space!
  7. Step back to look at your newly cleaned out and organized space
  8. Celebrate!

Now I can see that the cupboards hold just the supplies we need for the “now” of our lives. They are all so much easier to access for future projects. This also creates a sense of peace for me as I know just what is behind each cupboard door.

De-cluttering small spaces brings in a calming. A clearing away of that which is no longer needed and an opening to the possibilities for the future is gained. Breathing and enjoying this moment. Then, on to the next space to be cleared that is listed on my note cards. I wonder which it will be….
What will you de-clutter this week?