I spent a large part of my last weekend cleaning out my garage all alone. It’s not necessarily the way I like to spend a weekend, but for some reason I felt compelled. Maybe it was because I saw other neighbors doing it, or possibly because I tripped over my kids' winter gear and almost broke my neck. After giving it a lot of thought, I came to the realization it felt cathartic. My spring cleaning project became a cleansing of the winter months, an unveiling of what’s to come; Spring and Summer. The feeling of removing layers of heavy clothing, out with the old in with the new. It was as if I had a great therapy session (or what I imagine great therapy session feeling like). The idea of organizing one small part of my life felt so good and comforting.
I have heard of people who specialize in organizing closets, kitchens and lives. I feel I have a pretty good grasp on all of that. I seem to get organized in areas I am good at or enjoy. I know myself well and I am the type that can’t do A, B and C, until I first get my office organized, my kitchen pantry put together etc. If you lead a busy life, with children, a job, or stay at home mom (which is much more difficult than escaping by going to a job), then it’s difficult to feel on top of things.
My trick is to do a little every single weekend. Don’t get me wrong, I am not suggesting that you slave away picking up after your family, running 10 loads of laundry, cleaning out junk drawers. What I am suggesting is, tackle little bits at a time, don’t overwhelm your self. Get your family involved. Have the kids make piles of clothing that need to be washed. Have them go through their toys and donate some. Have them put their bikes, helmets, skates in a bin marked with their name. There’s always something to do and why not spend the time wisely as a family.
Today, I took my 12-year old grocery shopping with me. Believe me, it’s easier to get in and out without him but I want him to feel involved. I had him write a list of the groceries we should buy. I had to cross a few out such as Cheetos and other junk foods but, hey, a little junk never killed anyone. When we got home, I asked him to pick up all his clothes that littered his bedroom floor. His response: “mom, have you seen your closet lately?“. He was right, it was a disaster! I had a pile of clothing shoved in the corner that was 3 feet high.
That was it, I knew I was in a heap of trouble. It got to the point that I felt overwhelmed by it, so I separated my pants, shirts, PJ’s, bras, and underwear etc. It seemed more manageable that way. What I quickly noticed was many of the clothes were items I wasn’t crazy about. So, I made another pile, donate. Wouldn’t you know, I had 3 pairs of pants, 6 shirts AND 2 bras to donate.
The bras were in my drawer for years. I always moved them aside and never chose to put them on. I always said to myself maybe one day I will need it for a specific occasion. That was nonsense, if I don’t wear it now, I never will. This is a metaphor for life. Discard old things that have no meaning or value to you. It’s just weighing you down. Don’t place value on “things”, you will never get anything back in return. Surround yourself with things that make you feel good, make you feel proud and confident.
Judith Samson-Bra Bridge founder
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