One of the key things I find it’s important to explain when clients first get in touch or I get media or partnership invites is my declutter definition. Because the area of decluttering is so broad and it overlaps with many different aspects of our lives, it’s really understandable that at times we’re not all on the same page. In my case, I often find that some of these requests are not relevant to, or indeed, in line with the message I share or what I teach students and clients.
An example of this would be anything to do with home cleaning or that side of spring cleaning – it’s absolutely not my strong point and I would be found out fairly quickly if I pretended for a second to be expert in this area! Where I’d see that my message would be very much in conflict with potential business partners (even if we are both using the word “decluttering”) would be, for example, storage companies where there is an emphasis on getting people to simply stow away anything that’s taking up space or weighing them down in their homes or garages. Dumpster companies that send stuff to landfill is another good example here. I’m a big lover of our environment and I created the yearly National and International Declutter Day campaigns to create awareness around Reusing and Recycling as well as Donating and Giving after we Declutter to Feel Good. So, on a fairly regular basis I’d find myself having to explain my personal definition of decluttering.
What my declutter definition is
As a coach, NLP practitioner, holistic therapist and professional trainer specialising in the “letting go” aspect of decluttering, I have come to understand how these definitions are more important than we might imagine. One of the biggest confusions around the terminology relates to how “decluttering” and “organising” are perceived. Even though they are two completely different skillsets, most of us get them mixed up. My declutter definition is being able to let go of anything that doesn’t serve you or that makes you feel bad (by the way, this could be mental, emotional and energetic as much as physical). My definition of organising is the ability to put systems in place for anything that you feel is worthwhile in your life and that you want to keep.
Over the years, many of my clients have come to me, because, even though they themselves and those around them may have said they were brilliant “declutterers”, they had come to the realisation that they were continually organising and tidying their clutter and actually unable to part with anything. Going through The Declutter Academy, most of my students would also usually develop this same awareness. I’ve also seen how, if someone never learns to declutter in the right way and truly “LET IT GO” (see my lovely logo tagline!), they can never become organised, and this is all to do with mindset.
I began developing my “Declutter Therapy” approach in 2010 (it’s since gained worldwide recognition as a modality) because I could see that, in my own life as much as from a professional perspective, when we don’t give credit to mindset, or the thoughts, beliefs, feelings and conditioning behind our decluttering, it simply does not give us relief we need. I can’t tell you how sad this makes me feel, and I’m so passionate about sharing the truth about decluttering!
What my decluttering definition is not
- Cleaning, tidying or organising as individual or standalone processes
- Striving for perfection in the wardrobe or home or obsessively decluttering or organising
- “Getting rid of everything” because you haven’t worked through any limiting thoughts or fears around personal possessions such as control, self-love or self-worth
- Making decisions without the right information (e.g. body shape, colour, signature style, lifestyle, décor and design, etc.)
- Over-focusing on things like fashion or storage solutions to deflect from the real situation or avoid any emotional discomfort
- Getting others to do it for you or having others make some or all or your decisions (of course, assuming you’re in a position to do this)
- Decluttering without understanding the true benefits or without meaning or connection to the process
My declutter definition describes decluttering as a healthy and balanced life-skill that we all deserve to have. Regardless of our age and personal circumstances, I’ve seen how, when we empower ourselves with the right knowledge, tools and confidence, it gets easier, more enjoyable and more empowered every single time we do it, ultimately impacting all levels of our being and all areas of our lives beyond. Honestly – it’s the stuff of miracles!
Find out how you can learn all manner of relevant decluttering definition and master decluttering with confidence and ease so you can help yourself or others or build a career in my specialised and cutting-edge area of decluttering and organising in The Declutter Academy certified professional organizer.