Daily Archives: May 24, 2011

Clear Your Clutter in Six Steps

posted by Annie B. Bond

Inspired by Teen Feng Shui, by Susan Levitt (Inner Traditions, 2003).

Clutter makes chaos. Susan Levitt defines clutter as items that are not stored properly (so either you can’t find them when you need them or you’re constantly tripping over them), items you don’t need or use that still take up space, and items you dislike that you feel obligated to keep. But you can conquer your clutter!

Here are six steps to rid your home and your life of clutter forever:

First, categorize your stuff.
You can do this room by room, since most of us are overwhelmed by the thought of doing the whole house all at once. Here are the five categories:

Essential: The things you need and use regularly.

Favorites: Your treasured mementos and favorite pieces of art.

Other people’s stuff: Things that you have borrowed, including rented videos and library books, and items that just don’t feel like they should belong to you anymore.

Annoying: Dirty laundry, junk mail, old magazines. It all piles up quickly.

Disgusting: Moldy food, junk food wrappers, that kind of thing. Eww.

Now you’re ready to conquer your clutter.

Ditch the disgusting stuff. This is the most obvious and easy place to start. Wash, dump, compost, or otherwise get rid of it.

Deal with the annoying stuff. Recycle magazines and junk mail, collect and wash the laundry, file, box, and store the things you think you might need, but get all of it out of sight and out of your space.

Donate. Give borrowed items back to their owners. Donate unwanted stuff to a local charity. Be honest with yourself: if you really detest something, even though it was a gift, get rid of it. You will find this to be remarkable cathartic and freeing.

Display. Your favorite things deserve special places where they can go. Honor your jewelry with a beautiful box, place loose photos in an album, make a shelf to show off your collections.

Devise. Your essential things need to be accessed easily, so devise a system so you’re not always fruitlessly searching for them. Keys can go on a hook by the door, bills in a basket on the desk, dirty laundry in a hamper in your closet, borrowed items in a box that you check every time you’re getting ready to visit someone.

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Quiz: Does Clutter Control You?

Is there a stack of mail teetering toward a disaster on your counter? Do you have stacks of magazines from the 1980s that you haven’t looked at since? Find your clutter quotient with this quiz from Unclutter Your Home (Storey Publishing, 1999) by Donna Smallin.

Choose a number between 1 and 4 that best describes your response to each of the following statements.

1: Never or almost never.
2: Sometimes.
3: Usually.
4: All the time.

Then add them up and see how you score below.

1. When I have free time I like to shop.
2. I keep bills, bank statements and other mail in piles, until I have time to file.
3. I have more than 10 plastic bags in my house.
4. I save magazines with interesting articles/recipes.
5. When I look around, I get tired just thinking about what it will take to unclutter my home.
6. I have two or more craft projects going on at any one time.
7. My house may look messy to some people, but I know where to find everything.
8. If someone stops by unexpectedly, I try to avoid letting them in.
9. I leave things out so I know where they are or as a reminder to myself.
10. Time keeps me from getting or being organized.
11. When it comes to clutter, I think, “Why bother? It will just get cluttered again.”
12. I can’t bear to part with things and I consider myself a pack rat.
13. The stress level in our house is directly related to the clutter level.

Next: How did you score?

Rating Your Answers
44 to 52: is indicative of a clutter problem that’s been building for some time. You are in need of some serious clutter-busting!
35 to 43: Your clutter problem is likely growing worse with eash passing year and will continue to do so unless you do something about it.
26 to 34: You have the potential to develop a clutter problem, but you also have the power to change a few old habits.
17 to 25: You may be simply, temporarily disorganized.
Less than 17: Congratulations on controlling your clutter. rather than letting it control you.
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Affirmation of the Day for May 24th

Today I will express my authentic self. I choose not to hide behind a false mask.

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Feng Shui Tip of the Day for May 24th

If you need to be forceful or promote ideas in your job, hang a picture with lots of red colors across from your station.

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Psychic Tip of the Day for May 24th

HEADS OR TAILS
You might have a passion for two lovers or come to appreciate two sides of your passion partner. Are you willing to live with both just for love?
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Today’s I Ching Hexagram for May 24th is 43: Determination

Tuesday, May 24th, 2011

Hexagram 43

General Meaning: Personal resolution points to a breakthrough, but decisive action is required. As long as you diligently hold your ground and ward off negative tendencies and influences, the good will prevail.

The persistence of negativity, which is that which opposes the good, is a constant in human affairs. Just when it is thought to have been eradicated, up it will pop again, sprouting through some crack in the pavement of civilized society. Evil need not take dramatic or extravagant forms, such as those exhibited in Nazi Germany. Garden-variety lies and deceit are much more common and persistent, but should be rooted out just as diligently. One must be determined to not accidentally feed negativity — either in one’s social or professional life, or in one’s own soul. In either case, definite rules must be followed for the struggle to succeed.

The first rule: do not compromise with evil. Destructive or exploitive actions must be identified openly for what they are, and discredited. The second: one cannot successfully resist negativity on its own terms. New, positive alternatives that lead away from the source of the problem are generally more successful, and appropriate than trying to counter negativity with raw power. The third rule: the means used to counter negativity must be consistent with the end to be achieved. One cannot stop the spreading of lies by spreading more of them

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Your Daily Number for May 24th: 8

Open, honest communication is important today. You’re a bottomless well of ideas. Money matters are likely to improve, and it’s a great day to conduct business. Romantic relationships may be a bit shaky.

Fast Facts

About the Number 8

Theme: Power, Responsibility, Good Judgment, Financial Rewards
Astro Association: Leo
Tarot Association: Strength
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Today’s Tarot Card for May 24th is The Empress

The Empress

This Tarot Deck: Tarot of the Spirit

General Meaning: Traditionally entitled “Empress,” this major arcana or “trump” card portrays the energy of the Great Mother. She is Nature, around us but also within us, the ever-unfolding Source of life-giving power. She is often pictured as a pre-Christian Goddess, as the one whom the High Priestess is channeling down to earth for the rest of us.

In medieval Europe, the Empress card was painted to represent whatever Queen currently ruled the land, probably to satisfy the Inquisitors. But the scholars of the Renaissance and beyond had no doubt of her true identity, although she could not be fully revealed on Tarot cards as the “woman clothed with the sun” until after the French Revolution.

This supreme archetype of femininity also symbolizes fertility. It is She who provides us nourishment and security. She is also sometimes seen as delighting us with flowers and fruit. A potentially terrifying aspect of this archetype manifests itself whenever karmic mood swings wipe out our plans, like a storm that has come upon us. Whatever happens, the Empress is the Source of our Embodiment and of Natural Law. She might even be called “the Great Recycler.”

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