For the past couple of weeks I have been making a deliberate and time consuming effort to tackle the many stacks of paper that have been accumulating in our household. My first step was to clear out an old file cabinet I had stored in the basement and drag it upstairs where I could put it to work for me. I soon discovered that this cabinet is where I had stashed my children's grade school photos, crayon drawings, and the many handicrafts their wee hands created. Well, needless to say I got distracted from my plan to get organized as I sat down and carefully handled each cherished piece that first afternoon. But the next morning I had arranged three boxes side by side with my children's name on the lids and had everything organized efficiently. Sometimes you find things you cannot let go of. At least I got them sorted out before I might have forgotten whose stuff was whose.
By afternoon I drove out to Staples and purchased one of those handy home/office paper shredders, a box of file folders, and an expandable folder to organize all our warranty booklets scattered about the house. Every appliance from our refrigerator to a battery operated lint remover (that never worked the way it was advertised on TV) came with an operating manual that I've tossed in one of my better-hold-onto-this-for-awhile paper stacks.
My husband couldn't believe how excited I was about buying a paper shredder.
I guess I was feeling a bit "giddy" just thinking about freeing myself of old stuff. I had several old bank statements, canceled checks, and aged tax forms that went directly into that "paper eating machine"...it felt really great watching that stuff get torn into bits. About an hour afterwards irrational words (Oh my God why ever did I get rid of that stuff? What ever were you thinking you idiot.) crept through my head. I even joking told someone that I might hold onto the shredded paper for a while. Afterall, scotch tape would put everything back together, right? Well, this morning the recycle truck picked up the shredded paper... no turning back on this now. But that's okay...after my initial panic I'm feeling pretty good about the whole thing.
If you have ever made any effort to sort through your things and get rid of items that don't serve any purpose in your life anymore, you may or may not have realized it...but you have opened up space around you to be filled with "new" and "better" things to make their way into your life. It has to do with Universal Law, not unlike the ebb and flow of financial abundance. I have found it to be true that the more we hold onto "useless items" the less satisfied we become.
I have a friend who hated her home for many years. She liked the idea of having nice things but couldn't bring herself to surround herself with the the home furnishings that she desired in a house she hated. She had the notion that if she couldn't have her dream home then she wouldn't fill the one she had with niceties. This was making her a very unhappy person. I tried to explain to her that although her house was not "her dream house" that by not fulfilling her own needs by surrounding herself with personal comforts that she was not being true or gentle with herself. Besides, it is my motto that your home is what you make of it. She eventually resolved herself to the fact that she might never find the perfect home and had new carpet laid down through-out her house, two months later her dream house came on the market. I believe she would have been rewarded with her dreamhome sooner if she had just gotten the message that she was deserving of the nicer things all along. The new carpet helped her fetch a nice price for her old place too!