Autumn makes space for sunny stories

bicycle with plant

It was something I had struggled with in the past.   Feng Shui was what I badly needed in my life. Order, symmetry, and clear surfaces promise so much yet the simple journey to get to this destination I did not have time for.   As a fellow Blogger, Writer or Artist you may agree that there is always something rather cool on the laptop screen to take away the attention from the clutter.  Not to mention delights of the holidays season approaching fast.

fresh cream cake dessert cheesecake

How bad is it? It is tricky to open the door to the room before I start! And we all need to access a clear creative space if we are going to put our best foot forward.

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After all it’s Autumn.  It’s officially time for welcoming in the new.  Embracing change and eek I’m struggling.

I love the idea of Feng Shui but somehow lose heart at the big changes it suggests like covering up beams.  It makes heaps of sense that a clutter free work area will be more productive.

I tried the Pomodoro technique where you do 20 minutes of busy activity then take a break and this helped make a stab at the process.  I see clear surfaces looking back at me after a quick squirt of polish.

I try the easy route of putting a vase of beautiful cut flowers on flat surfaces to bring life into the room and my spirits lift.  Yes this is a job worth doing.

cut flowers

In the end I know much of what surrounds me needs to find it’s way into a trash can. I have an idea to approach the new year with more space to do more creative work as I have a project I don’t seem to be able to finish for a year now.  So this is my big chance to find the ending and I don’t want this to be the thing that ends up being recycled!

rubbish bin

I need to be able to open my work room door without hitting anything though!  The main culprit is clothes that I believe will be good for something and items I just know will be useful one day.  The story of the man who collects so many elastic bands that eventually the rubber breaks down and none of them are any use springs to mind and I decide I do not want to be this person.

I came to a quick fire strategy that in the end has helped me finish some work.

I don’t suggest your cupboads has an equal jumble to mine dear gentle reader!  I just want to share my own recent victory in disentangling a shambles that was my work area.

One hot tip I read online is to start by shooting through multiples. If you have several similar items, such as mugs for example, let go of all them just keep one or two that may get used the most.  I have a big bag of shoe shapers (I’m not even sure you can buy these now) and bin all but three sets.  Although truthfully I probably will never use them let alone this lipstick collection that are all the same colour (ironically neutral nude beige!)

lipsticks

Technology seems to sort itself with very little pain thankfully.

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CD’s that remind me of great times get gone as I know I always have the joy of those moments and my Cloud storage is big enough to hold on to these cool vibes safely for some time to come (hopefully always!).  Bag number 1 is on it’s way to the thrift store.

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One easy win is picking at the low hanging fruit to get me into the full swing of this space clearing mood.  A satisfying swipe is made by marching through the bathroom and kitchen looking for out of date bottles and boxes which are a perfect fit for the trash can.

Another no brainer is high maintenance casual tops that need intensive ironing, dry cleaning and have fragile buttons that usually means I never wear them for fear of moving too fast and tearing the fabric.  Bag number 2 is ready to go out the door.

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I confess deep in my closet lie garments that are still in their packaging with the price tag on!  Impulse purchases I could never live up to wearing are doing nothing for my look so out they go.

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Truth is I have out grown  last Summer’s bargains and some shoes I have been saving for special occasions no longer fit me.  Not even close.  I know how the ugly sisters feel in Cinderella!!

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A piece of good news comes in the idea that long skirts that have long lost their shape and waist bands have a beautiful fabric I can re – use as a throw over the clutter that is left.  Things look a whole lot better in an instant!

 

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Where and why did I buy this hat?  I have no idea It’s been a great friend on many holidays and trips as it packs down flat and in its prime looked a little smart but now it is faded into two different colours.  It’s a wreck!

I read that women of many ancient cultures did ritual clearing before and after Autumn so I’m feeling like I’m hitting a seasonal trend.

autumn forest green trees brown leaves

My clearing is definitely in synch.  Our local theatre is doing a play about the British Queen meeting Margaret Thatcher called Handbagged this year.  It is a popular hit and reminds me of the theatre programmes I have yet to rifle through.  I still have archives of records I want to hoard but know I have never looked at some of the papers in 10 years!  Here’s to that immortal line from Frozen ‘let it go’

I see that there are things under the table I cannot part with. Old props from shows I will probably never do again but I believe in that possibility and it uplifts me and holds me together in a beautiful way so I am not apologetic.

That was told on stage some time ago and I remember how I felt in that moment so alive and alert and important it’s lovely to feel that vitality and all you need is a second of it. I’m sure everyone has their own unique path to that feeling by choosing something they do that makes them feel truly alive and in the moment that is why I have chosen to keep the items I have that is what In the end determines what did or did not make the cut

And so at last I think I have found my understanding of Feng Shui or at least my version of it!

Looking back on a room that now looks ‘normal’ I can see one way that made it easy for me to trudge through the debris was starting a process and having a purpose or a method to my madness. That gave me a bit of pepper for my motivation because after all no one tidies up for kicks?  Do they?

I feel so much freer and have batched up my tips into little emails if that interests you I will put a link here to join in. When I can find my notepad! It’s under something somewhere….

If you are all done and dusted then this will not be for you! Sign up for more funny tips as to how I emptied my closet here if you are looking for some mojo to let things go!

Clear my closet for Christmas

Here’s to a productive Autumn however your closet looks.  Now I have space for a new season and thankfully a few choice items that inspire new stories are still at hand.  I can see good stuff on the horizon!

Hope you feel joyful for October.

Enjoy more stories of ‘Change’ here

 

46 thoughts on “Autumn makes space for sunny stories

  1. Ouch, it hurts me so much to de clutter, I have stacks of old magazines that I won’t throw out because I paid too much money for them. The necessity to start cleaning up is a priority. Soon, very soon, it will happen.

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    • I feel that. I have magazines that are more than 10 years old. I think it’s difficult to chuck them because I know they will not be online. They are probably one of the last things I will ‘get around to’! Thanks for the nudge to get going with the cleaning up. I have to say it’s lovely to have a few more clear surfaces about the place even if it means a little bit more cleaning 😉 happy times!

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  2. Good for you. I find it hard to let things go also. Moving overseas so many things were sold, given away and thrown out before heading home. It pained me, but space was precious and expensive to ship. Back home we had many things stored away for 5 years. Once we have a place of our own (currently renting a small furnished space) the long process of sorting and throwing away will start again. I hope it will be easier since I didn’t have or need it for 5 years.

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    • I envy you for already having got one big clear out under your belt! I made a big move from a big house in Wales to smaller space in England which would have been a good excuse for a clear out but the removal people were so helpful they brought everything along and stored it till I could figure out a solution. It was a gift at the time as so much belonged to the past but it has meant a lot of things lived in boxes for years. I wish you so much success with your next sort out. I feel sure it’s going to rock. Maybe it will feel fun as you already nailed it! I did notice that once I started throwing away a few things that held memories it got easier 🙂 All good things to you.

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      • Thank you. All the change is hard when it comes at once. I was sad to leave China, so it made it hard to give away those little connections. I think (and hope) it will be easier to sort the things that were tucked away in storage since I haven’t missed or needed them when we were away.

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  3. Autumn is the perfect time to get in harmony with oneself. It balances summer memories and winter expectations. That’s what i wrote in one of my blogs yesterday. 😉
    Getting new space certainly welcomes new energy for new emotions. One should not be a slave to materia stuff, the thread to spiritual is letting enough space for the novel.
    No remorse – you’ve found the inner motivation and strength to clear the old and let space for …well, autumn will bring it to you – it’s a gift you deserve. 🙂
    Well done, Lita! 🙂

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    • This is such amazing advice as I want to keep going in my mission! Thank you for reminding me of the real benefits. It is easy to think I ‘need’ things but I haven’t used them for (ahem!) 10 years!!! I will come back to read your words for some more inspiration later on. Here’s to lots more lovely fresh space! More room for happy times 😉 hooray!

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  4. So much of our stuff hold memories: the vintage table from a garage sale, the necklace bought in a bar, gifts. It’s always a challenge to keep order but after reading your post, I see I’m in good company!

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  5. Very inspirational post! I seem to attract clutter, mostly reading material that I think I will get to, but never do. If I can get past the emotional attachment, purging is always rewarding. Maybe I’ll start with the bookshelf or go through the summer clothes I never wore. Thanks for waking me up. 🙂

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    • Happy to help through my own corner of joyful chaos! Bookshelves are my next challenge so if you come up with any grand tips or ideas I’m all ears! I hear you on the tightness of emotional attachment. We can break through!! I tear off small images that connect me to somethings before I bin them and then turn the picture into a bookmark so I still have the memory of the book or object but truthfully the memory is in the heart not the thing. That may or may not help! 🙂 Wishing you a lovely Sunday.

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  6. I, too, am in synch! Closet cleared and bags waiting in the spare room to give away. It’s an ongoing work and I learn in the process. I could never consider feng shui though, I find it quite restrictive (I’m a city person and usually can’t make my North from my South :-)). Better make our own simple decluttering rules and stick by them, don’t you think?

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    • That is so cool! We are both in synch. Yes I relate. I find looking at Feng Shui ideas a good way to get me in motion even if my end results are not too symmetrical! I know what you mean about not being in a position to make a North from my South (beautifully put!!). That’s a great call to find the rules that work best for our own de- cluttering. That’s a top tip especially as I do need to keep going with my efforts! More power to you.

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  7. When I was preparing to move after 15 years in the same house, I realized how much “stuff” I had accumulated and I became a whiz at donating and trashing stuff I no longer needed or wanted. i promised I’d never purchase a new thing again unless I also threw something away. It’s a great rule to prevent future clutter!!

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    • Lovely to read this. I wish I had read it ten years ago! And the best next time to read this is now. It’s a great tip. After starting to enjoy a bit more space about me I feel like this is something I will take on board! One in and one out! Love it.

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    • That’s a beautiful point. I agree, it’s inspiring to feel into and welcome new things coming. All change is good they say (somewhere). The books you are reading sound exciting. Happy days.

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  8. I love your hat portraits. You also made me hungry with the delicious photo of sweets….and I was just cautioning myself this morning that I needed to cut way back on eating sweet…hmmmmm….and I love the advice of getting rid of what I have multiples of…why have I never thought of that. It would do me and my cluttered house a lot of good.

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    • My hat portraits made me smile. Not until I put the hat on did I realise I probably will not wear it out of the house again. So it was a handy no brainer! I can’t remember where I read the tip of cutting back on multiples but agreed it is a handy idea. Here’s to a bit less clutter for us all!

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  9. I did some closet cleaning this weekend. There is something about the cool autumn air that makes me want to clean up and organize 🙂

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  10. Hi Lita,I must add that the company I work for is moving to much smaller digs so we are all clearing out our workspaces. I have few personal items there but oh, the paper! I repaired the shredder myself just to get the job done. The plants at my desk are second and third gen cuttings from a favorite co-worker’s plant so they will be hard to part with. By the way, love the hat portraits!

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    • You read my mind Linda! I am staring now at boxes filled with old papers! Thank you for this inspiration to get going on the documents. I guess the downsizing is a blessing in disguise, forcing us to decide what is important. Lovely to hear from you. I hear you on the plant cuttings! Have a super weekend in the best city on the planet! 😉

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    • I can’t believe the holidays are now so close. I enjoyed your post about the festive concert. It made me realise I need to get cracking on the bits I have left undone! I agree that it’s hard to get rid of stuff. I’m hoping that the fact Christmas is around the corner gets me moving 😉 Wishing you a lovely December.

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  11. I just reread this after I just started this weekend…my time to do this has always been right before the new year, out with the old in with the new…however, I have felt the need to start early this year in order to get it done! HA!! Home office and Laundry room complete…now on to the tough ones like closets and kitchen! I too hope that the “mood” and “drive” stay with me for the long haul in between work and the like! There is nothing like the feeling of a clutter free, know what is in every cupboard, under bed, in closet, in drawer kind of feeling! HA! Good luck to all!

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    • I am holding space for the mood to keep with you for your fabulous work. What an awesome idea to get all the sorting done now before New Year. I’m with you on this and I do (fingers crossed) hope to ace my own cleaning up a small study room before Christmas. I can’t open the door to it at the moment it’s so stuffed full! The rewards as you say are huge, so lovely to be free of the clutter. You will clear your kitchen and closets easily, I know it. More power to you!

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      • Thanks for the words of encouragement…kitchen and closets are ready and in need but my time is limited right now..but I’ll get there!! So will you with your study room!! I have decided to clean whatever is bothering me the most…right now, nothing is! HA!!

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    • Thank you! Yes, I have got to the stage now with the weather getting colder I mix 3 lipsticks together to find something that works and also holds up against the wind! Lovely to hear from you. I just pinned your post about happiness on my Pinterest board (the crepes look delicious!). Wishing you hearty congratulations on your Anniversary!

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      • Great minds think alike! Was just thinking to mix some of my neutral lipstick colours, after reading your post! Thanks for passing by! & thanks for pinning one of my post. Yes, crepes here are delicious. There are many places where one can find these freshly made, either passing by the street stalls or restaurants. There’s even one that sells 80++ different toppings! 😃 Wishing you a great weekend, Lita! 😃

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  12. I love it when people declutter and take stuff to the Op Shop because I’ve picked up so much really great stuff and its affordable. So much treasure, that I need a castle nd then I wouldn’t have to declutter. I really don’t like the word to be honest. At the same time, I’ve made some headway and cleared a fair bit out.
    I have friends who say that every time you bring something in, something needs to go out and I can get that. That said, I have some catching up to do.
    xx Rowena

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    • That is such a good piece of advice to throw something out for everything that comes in. You have prompted me to make a bit more space for new stuff. I was meaning to bin one very old Xmas tree (it’s in bits) so that’s going today !

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      • I’ll have to follow my own advice. I visit op shops when I’m emotionally charged. My Mum’s in hospital with muscular spasms in her back and my brother’s cat was killed by a tick. My brother has fibromyalgia and the cat was a pretty quirky character who actually lived across the road and he and my brother attracted each other I think. So, I went to the op shop this afternoon feeling terrible and lost myself going through things. he funny thing was that I actually found things I needed there. I did manage to find my daughter a pair of converses a trendy type of runner which can be quite expensive. I also found myself a pair of sporty leggings with a skirt attached, which will be perfect for dancing. It was just my size. It’s funny how I find things that are really suited to me at the Op shop and struggle to find things in an ordinary shop.
        As you can see, I’m a long way off from ditching my accumulation bug.

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      • Wow the converses sounds like a real find. It’s a delicate balance I find of wanting clear surfaces but also being realistic about what I need. I’m with you in not quit chasing off the accumulation bug ! The dance outfit sounds cool.

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