How Clearing Out Clutter Can Change Your Life

Clutter in garage

You know how it is when you move into a new home. There’s so much to do at the old house, you just throw everything into boxes and commit to sorting through it all at the new house.

That’s what Jean and I did when we moved into our current home. Once the truck was unloaded, we pulled the lid off each box and looked through every item one by one.

Keep this.

Put that over there.

We don’t need this anymore.

What is that?

A lot of stuff went into the trash. In fact, somewhere in the middle of that process, I thought it’d be helpful to get one of those big trash bins they use at construction sites. Jean agreed, so I ordered one. It was fantastic. I was throwing stuff away left and right.

And that’s when the trash fairies showed up.

I’d spend an evening happily tossing one item after another into the garbage. But by the time I came home from work the next night, some of the stuff I’d pitched had mysteriously migrated back inside the house.

I soon discovered that in my absence, Jean, Trent, and Troy were quietly retrieving all of the things they couldn’t bear to part with.

That’s how clearing clutter from our homes often goes, doesn’t it? Letting go of things is easier for some of us than it is for others. There’s an emotional component we sometimes don’t recognize.

That’s why hanging on to too much stuff can turn into more than just a messy home. It can create a lot of physical and emotional barriers in a family as well. It can also point to areas where we lack trust in God.

Think about it. We hang on to things we’ll probably never use again because of all of the “what if” scenarios we dream up. Those tendencies can often reflect a deep-seated fear that God may not come through for us, so we’d better hedge our bets and hang on just a little longer to that item we haven’t used in three years.

There are other reasons for clutter. Some people are afraid to part with things because their family never had much growing up, or maybe they were taught never to be wasteful. Sometimes there’s guilt (“My late relative gave that to me”) or shame (“But I spent so much money on that”).

Whatever the reason, it’s helpful to understand that everything we own costs us time, money, and energy in some real way. The resources we use to maintain all of the stuff we have can prevent us from moving forward into new opportunities … or make it a lot more difficult.

One woman who finally freed herself from clutter in her life admitted that she had been wanting to change jobs for some time, but she was encumbered by everything in her life to which she felt tied. But soon after she started getting rid of stuff, a job offer came up. This time she felt free to move on to a new opportunity. She said, “Five years ago, I could never have considered doing this. It was too overwhelming.”

If you feel like all the stuff in your life is keeping you from moving forward, today’s program is for you. Visiting with us is popular guest Kathi Lipp. She is a humorous, energetic, insightful person. And with her bubbly personality, she could deliver bad news, and you’d smile and feel good about it—which could come in handy as we laugh our way through a conversation about the difficulties we face trying to free ourselves of clutter.

I hope you’ll tune in for this inspirational twist about embracing God’s best for your life by getting rid of stuff in your home that could get in the way. Hear it on your local radio station, tune in anytime online, or join us via our free, downloadable mobile phone app.

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foodcooppres 14 days ago
This is all true, up to a point.  But I learned to be thrifty and I often find that the things I save benefit other people rather than myself.  If you need an empty box, I have one.  etc.  I hate throwing away anything usable, but I am more than happy to give it away and often do.  I also note that "clutter gurus" say not to keep anything if you haven't used it in a year.   Balderdash!  I have sometimes used something after many years of storage.   The key is organization, so you know what you have and can find it.