Archive | May 18, 2013

Don’t go in there!

I was reading this post on 365 Less Things, and with a frisson of horror, realised that this was me:

…rooms that were “No go zones”, “Forbidden entrance because this-is-where-I-threw-all-the-stuff-people-were-not-supposed-to-see”, “Clutter spaces”.

When I have visitors I madly cram junk, more often than not it is paper-related junk, generally into places that I don’t let visitors go. My bedroom. The empty front room. The study, junk room. Precisely when the study became renamed as the junk room is not clear. But it is a floordrobe of stuff.

And the madly stuffed junk, or lazily left stuff, spills over all surfaces.

But even worse, the spaces left clear do not remain so for long. More junk collects. To be dumped on top of the other previously removed junk now in the junk room. Or the removed junk flows right back out to other rooms.

I cannot organise or decorate the junk room, until I dispose of the detritus. Yes, I need a routine to deal with the paper flow. (And yes, I need to deal with the blockage that is my not done tax. Oh god, don’t mention that beast.)

But I need to get the stuff out.

So here is some stuff that has languished on the floordrobe of the junk room.

Paper bits, envelopes, a business card, packaging from magnetic photo frames that have finally made it to the fridge:


More bits of paper, advertising material, a bag from a conference that is no good for grocery shopping (and I already have dozens in this style), a broken spray bottle, a stationery folder from a conference, a pad of invitations from about 10 or more years ago for one of my son’s birthdays.


A craft activity, donated to a charity shop.


An old pencil case and a stupid, blow up bat from the Easter Show.


Still more bits of paper and a plastic container from an old fridge. The container doesn’t even stand up as the base is uneven so it is unusable except for its original purpose.


An old phone from our old house. Tried it and while it works it makes a loud buzzing noise. Yet more paper; hanging files that have sat on the floor for 5 years, just in case they are needed; a bay blade piece (think that is what is is called, a toy from my sons’ passing craze); an unused pad (think it came from yet another conference).


Book stand I had bought when my children were young. Too childish for them and we have bookshelves enough. No need to clutter other tables. Donated to charity shop.


Packaging from a gift. Kept in case I needed to gift a small item. As if I needed anymore small boxes!


OK, you still can’t go in there but that is enough for today. I will attack another corner next weekend.

The second agreement: Don’t take anything personally

Returning to coping skills and Ruiz’s Four Agreements for this post.20130505-133208.jpg

This agreement has given me the best skills in resilience.

It immediately made sense for me and I so understood it. From the start, after reading this, the actions of others who were not loved ones ceased to have power over me, ceased to scar me and I gained control over me. I stopped giving that power to others.

Of course, those at work still have an impact and stress builds (just ask my back) but it is as if my emotional plump line stays steady. There is no swinging pendulum, no trigger of distress or anger. If you’re a dickhead, that’s your look-out and I am not going to be upset. Though I may get revenge. (Damn, there goes Agreement Number 1.)

So, whatever others say about me, it doesn’t say much about me. It says things about them. If I know I am doing my best and doing right, or at least acting from a point of good intentions, them the nastiness, the abuse, the criticism from others, is telling about their experiences, their thoughts, their mindset.


And I love the ending of the chapter on this agreement.

If you keep this agreement, you can travel around the world with your heart completely open and no one can hurt you. You can say, “I love you,” without fear of being ridiculed or rejected. ..You can say yes, or you can say no – whatever you choose – without guilt or self-judgement. You can choose to follow your heart always. Then you can be in the middle of hell and still experience inner peace and happiness. You can stay in your state of bliss, and hell will not affect you at all.

I avow to not hand over control of my emotions to others, and this agreement has given me the understanding how to remain in control of myself.

Now time for today’s log:

  • 1. Did I have a laugh today?
  • Yes, though nothing that seems funny if I shared it here. As they say, “You had to be there.”

  • 2. Did I give someone a hug today?
  • Bugger, forgot.

  • 3. Did I do a relaxation activity, such as read a book, have a bath, light a candle, dream, call someone and have a chat, sit in the sun?
  • Yes. Read a chapter of my latest book while marinating in my own juices in a bubble bath. Great new bubbles – pomegranate, from a son for Mothers’ Day.

  • 4. Did I do something good for someone else or be nice to someone?
  • Yes, gave a book to a colleague to motivate her in her career.

    Today’s decluttered item = More advertising material from last year’s conference. This time CD-Roms and plastic material that cannot be recycled. Unfortunately this goes to landfill. But at least it is not on my floordrobe. By the end of the year I want to reclaim the junk room. A few years ago it was called the computer room or the study. Now it is called the junk room. Not good. I am sure paper breeds in that room!

    Reflecting on the last two decluttered items, I am going to try to not bring home so much gumf from the conference this year. What purpose does it serve?