I’m a procrastinator, I really am. I always get things done, but it can be a bit of a last minute rush. For this reason I am taking part in a 30 day challenge during August to clear the decks so to speak, to help improve my business processes, go through and recycle any unwanted paperwork and generally become more streamlined.
I have been interested in decluttering and living with less ‘stuff’ for a few years now after reading Marie Kondo’s The Life Changing Magic of Tidying Up. But real life gets in the way it feels like no matter how many bags I give to the charity shop every month (at least 1 and sometimes up to 10 per month!) that ‘stuff’ magically piles up again rather quickly. I would really benefit from sorting out my office space, especially as it now occupies a corner of our bedroom since my third son was born and my previous office is now his nursery!
A fellow Homeopath sent me an article called Clearing to Neutral which aims to help procrastinators like me become more focused. I had heard about this concept before being referred to as Clearing to Zero and immediately dismissed it thinking it meant you had to completely tidy everything in your home so that there was nothing left to tidy. Like every last bit. To me this just sounded completely unrealistic, especially with 3 young children who seem to find joy in mess making. However, I always feeling lighter, calmer and more focused with less mess and clutter around me so I decided I needed to read the article with an open mind.
I am so glad that I did, it immediately resonated with me and my initial assumption that you had to clean until there was zero mess was somewhat wrong. I will put the link to the original article below and try to explain as best I can in my own words what Clearing to Neutral means and how it can help you. Clearing to Neutral is more about setting the path to making your life easier. Doing the things that you can do now rather than leaving them until later and therefore creating twice the amount of work for yourself.
I often find myself procrastinating about those tasks that I really need to do to grow my business or make my home a calmer place to live as I have ten jobs to do before I can actually do the task I need and want to do. Totally my fault of course because I have left important jobs for another time and they have multiplied.
For example I need to do my tax return but I haven’t filed away all of my receipts or created a spreadsheet to input all of my invoices on, plus I can’t find my password to file my tax return (the struggle is real). Or I need to post a certain remedy to a patient but I can’t find the remedy as I didn’t file it away after my last set of appointments and my printer is broken so I cannot print instructions on how to take the remedy. If I were to file away my receipts when I got them plus input them onto a spreadsheet weekly my life would be so much easier. And why didn’t I just buy a new printer when I didn’t need it so urgently? You get my drift about Clearing to Neutral?
I’m actually really good at Clearing to Neutral in my kitchen, I clear away after every meal so that I can just start cooking the next meal without having to do a ton of washing up first, (Okay some mornings the mad dash of getting 3 children out of the door for the school run this is not always possible but I mostly do this!) Or not leaving the dishes piled up overnight so that I can just get on with making the kids breakfast in the morning, coming down to dirty dishes is just so demoralising right?
What I took from the article was that I need to apply the same principals that I use in my kitchen to my business (and probably the kids play room too!). Tidy away all of the kids shoes at night, file away all paperwork and remedies straight after my appointments, put the pen back where it belongs! Yes this all sounds so obvious, but if we are honest with ourselves how many of us actually do it? I am going to make more of a concerted effort to not procrastinate, to not put off things until tomorrow that I can do today.
So if you ever do come to my house, you will not find the calmest, tidiest house in the street, (there will probably be toys strewn about the place). But hopefully it will also feel more organised, less cluttered and the mugs will be washed and ready to offer you a nice cuppa. And here is the link to the original Clear to Neutral article, I would love to hear your tips and tricks to staying organised. Do let me know by commenting below!