How to Let Go of Emotional and Physical Clutter in Your Life

Updated on March 19, 2017
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Sadie Holloway enjoys discovering simple ways to stay organized and manage her time better at home, at work, and out in the community.

Learn how clearing clutter from your social and work schedules can help you feel more balanced and refreshed.

Have you ever wished you had more time to take up a relaxing hobby such as painting or sewing? When you start clearing out the things that cause you stress, you free yourself up to enjoy doing things that make you feel happy and fullfilled.
Have you ever wished you had more time to take up a relaxing hobby such as painting or sewing? When you start clearing out the things that cause you stress, you free yourself up to enjoy doing things that make you feel happy and fullfilled.

When you simplify your life, both materially and spiritually, you actually open yourself up to more abundance than you could possibly imagine. Taking steps to clear out the clutter in your life can help to ease stress, improve your health, and strengthen your family and social relationships. Here are some easy ways to start simplifying your life so that you can spend time doing what really matters to you!

There's a movement afoot to downsize our homes into smaller and smaller abodes—commonly known as tiny houses. Many people are giving up on the idea that you must own a big house in order to be happy. But while there are many blogs and articles on how to get rid of "stuff" and learn how to live with less, many people still cling to invisible forms of clutter that can make life much more stressful than it need be.

Below is a list of things you can start doing to simplify your life and bring more peace, joy, and harmony to your days and nights.

1. Learn how to be more assertive. If you're like me, you probably have a hard time saying no to other people, especially friends and family that mean the world to you. But saying yes to everything under the sun – from attending multiple family gatherings to lending money to relatives or helping someone move -- can have a negative effect on your interpersonal relationships. When you learn how to say 'no' to the things that you can’t do and embrace all the things you want to do, the time you spend with friends and family will be much more enjoyable.

2. Pare down your media consumption. Become more selective in what you watch on TV, the movies you choose to see, and the online media you consume. Limiting your screen time and being more selective in what you watch, read, and listen to will cut down on the endless media chatter that permeates our lives, day in and day out.

Put down the TV remote and head outside with a good book.
Put down the TV remote and head outside with a good book.

3. Consolidate your email and social media accounts. Use the social media accounts that you enjoy using the most and unsubscribe from all the rest. (Right now my favorite social media playgrounds include Pinterest and Facebook.) If you find you're struggling to keep up with the maintenance of several different social media profiles and accounts, it's time to assess how many social media accounts you really need in order to stay on top of current events. When you are more selective about which news sources you follow and engage with you're more likely to get more accurate and reliable news you can actually use.

4. Simplify your banking. Reducing the number of financial institutions you use will help you keep better track of your money and reduce unnecessary fees. Consolidating your accounts and getting rid of the ones that you don’t use can also improve your credit score. Plus you'll reduce your exposure to online fraud and identity theft because you’ll be able to monitor your accounts more effectively.

5. Say "no" to gossip. Gossip creates time-wasting, energy-zapping drama. Steer clear of gossip at work, among friends and even within the family. (Talking about other relatives behind their back is a form of gossip even if it is kept in the family.) Commit yourself to communicating more openly with others and let people know that you will not listen to negative jabs about others. Remember, gossiping can be a subtle and sinister form of bullying, especially at work. Saying "no" to gossip is a sign that you are an emotionally mature, confident person.

When you say "no" to gossip, you create happier, more trusting relationships with your friends. You also end up meeting more people and making more friends because you are perceived as kind and friendly; someone who can be trusted.
When you say "no" to gossip, you create happier, more trusting relationships with your friends. You also end up meeting more people and making more friends because you are perceived as kind and friendly; someone who can be trusted.

If you could make your life easier without spending any money, what would you do? Would you cut back on the number of social commitments you make so that you could spend time with people you enjoy being around? Would you start saying "no" to the things that you don't want in your life—drama, negativity—and say "yes" to more of the things you do want, like a restful night's sleep and authentic relationships?

What other areas in your life need to be de-cluttered and simplified? Leave a comment and share the ways you have simplified your life.

What causes the most mental and emotional clutter in your life?

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© 2017 Sadie Holloway

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    Robert E Smith 16 months ago from Rochester, New York

    Great article Sadie. I have had trouble in several areas mentioned here at times throughout my life. I have fallen into the trap of not knowing how to say no and doled out too many precious family hours. I have wasted way too much time on social media. And much to my shame, I have gossiped and hurt others in the process. I can truthfully say I have grown up a bit. Pretty good at 61 years old, huh. Thank you for the article, it made me revisit some places in my life and thank God for His help to move me on. Bob.

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