Clear the Clutter |Pray for India | Bless India

by Steve Jerome on October 27, 2011

I just spent twenty minutes researching a TV show to help me explain how clutter can take over a life, but now I’m wondering if I couldn’t have used that twenty minutes more effectively cleaning off the kitchen table.

Actually, it’s spiritual clutter that concerns me today. We all seem to have so much of it. That’s why I was researching the British TV series “Life Laundry”.

In the show, which has aired on BBC America and some PBS stations, host Dawna Walter helps people clear the clutter from their lives by dumping all their junk onto a tarp in a local school gym, a backyard or a neighborhood park. Then, she makes them confront the reasons they kept all that stuff in the first place.

The show that results is often more “Dr. Phil” than “Extreme Makeover: Home Edition”. Walter and the show’s producers are clearly concerned with getting to the root of the hoarding and cluttering issues rather than just putting the extra stuff into a storage unit for the homeowner to deal with later—as some home improvement shows do.

I decided to do some research because something about the show feels very spiritual to me. It didn’t surprise me to learn that is intentional. Walter is a reiki master—a practitioner of a hands–on energy–balancing art. The show’s website also includes articles from her about why people hoard and how to get past the internal issues that lead to hoarding.

You see, Walter is just one of many people who have figured out that external clutter is often a symptom of internal chaos. Sure, other circumstances sometimes cause clutter, too, but those other random collections of useless things are often easily overcome as time and new situations allow. Persistent clutter in your house, though, is likely a symptom of persistent clutter in your soul. But what can be done?

The solution is almost always letting go. One of “Life Laundry”’s subjects started her highly organized collections of figurines as a way of rebelling against a mother who didn’t allow her to express her personality. Others try to hold onto bygone eras by holding onto some of the things that surrounded them during those times.

Today, scour your life for clutter. If you’re like me, it won’t be hard to find. But before you start trying to clear it away, consider why you’ve been hanging onto those things. With a bit of luck and some spiritual guidance, you just may begin to discover the true sources of your life’s clutter. Then, start cleaning it up from the inside out.

In other words, let go.

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