Want Versus Need

To successfully clear your clutter Forever you need to understand that there is a difference between Want and Need.

One of the many reasons why we have our clutter is because we think they’re the same thing. We may keep something simply because we want to keep it, even though we don’t need it and don’t know when – or if – we’ll use it. It feels safter to keep it just in case.

If we want to successfully clear all our clutter Forever, we need to start focusing on what we NEED in the present and the near future to live our Best Life, rather than focusing on what we WANTED in the past, WANT in the present, or what we may WANT in the unknown future. Realistically, we probably don’t NEED many of the things in our clutter – not even the things we tell ourselves we will use when we’re completely clutter free. Here are four examples of the differences between what we say we WANT and what we actually NEED.

Want: To Be Perfect

Need: To be Good Enough

There is no such thing as perfect. What’s perfect for you is not necessarily perfect for someone else. At some point you’ll have to accept that what you call good enough is actually perfect for what you need to achieve – which is making consistent, regular progress on your Journey, eliminating the accumulation of things you don’t need and won’t use, and letting go of things in your clutter that you don’t need and won’t use.

For example, you might WANT to be able to do 2 hours of your Clutter Clearing Journey a day because that’s the ‘perfect’ amount of time to spend on it, but what you actually NEED to do is a minimum of 30 minutes a day for 3 days a week with no more than 3 days in between. That’s good enough because it’s enough to get you into a routine of ‘doing the doing’.

The ‘perfect’ amount of time to spend on your Journey each day is however much time feels safe, up to a maximum of 2 hours a day, 5 days a week, and with a minimum of 2 rest and recharge days in every 7 days. What you NEED is to make regular time to move forward on your Journey towards your Clutter Free Goal. Remember: Even though a snail may move slowly, it’s still moving forward faster than a rock.

Want: To clear it FAST

Need: To be consistent and persistent

We all want to clear our clutter fast when we decide to clear it, but you know from experience that’s not possible. If it were, you wouldn’t be reading this (!).

What you actually NEED is to be consistent and persistent, going at a pace that’s comfortable and feels safe for you, and to allow your brain to process what you’re learning. More important to do a little each day consistently while getting the help and support you need.

By starting your Journey and doing 30 minutes a day consistently and persistently, you will clear it faster than by staying in the giving up and procrastination cycle you’ve been stuck in for years. Becoming Clutter Free Forever so you never have to do this again involves breaking and making habits which takes time, so what you WANT – to clear it fast – will never enable you to clear your clutter Forever.

Want: To avoid uncomfortable feelings, emotions and memories

Need: To accept, grieve and let go of the past so you can focus on living your Best Life

We find something we never used and feel guilty so we try to justify keeping it. We see something we bought and never used and realise we wasted both the thing and the money we used to buy it. We find something we had good intentions of doing something with but never did and feel like a failure. We find the passport or birth certifcate we spent hours, days, weeks looking for that caused so much anger, frustation, maybe even caused us to have to get a replacement or cancel a trip as a result. We find things that belonged to a love one that trigger unresolved grief, or we feel responsible for keeping their posessions to prove we still care.

You will never clear your clutter Forever if you try to avoid dealing with the painful feelings and memories, or if you’re in denial that they are part of your clutter.

We have to face these feelings, emotions and memories to be able to clear our clutter. We have to accept that it’s in the past. We have to grive for the life we ‘could’ have had or feel we ‘should’ have had, and start focusing on creating our Best Life in the near future. We can’t change the past. We learn from our mistakes (hopfully!) By clearing your clutter and facing those painful feelings and memories, you’re doing that learning so you can start creating and living your Best Life.

When you tried to clear your clutter in the past you probably didn’t focus on what your Clutter Free Life – your Best Life – was going to be like, so the feelings, emotions and memories were all you had to focus on. When you start to get clear about your Clutter Free Goal and how you want your Best Life to be, suddenly the scales are tipped in favour of your future. 

The choice is yours – do you WANT to live in the past, or do you NEED to start creating and living your Best Life?

Want: ‘Evidence’ of a life well-lived

Need: To live our Best Life

Many of us fear having little evidence of our lives or that we lived it well – whatever that means. Yet many of us think that it’s the physical things in our clutter that provide the evidence of what we’ve done, how well we did, how unique we were, or how loved we were. If we’re not careful, we’ll keep all the ‘evidence’ of a life well lived in the past, at the expense of continuing to live our life in the present.

According to some research into the factors that lead to a fulfilling life, it’s not the achievements that define a life well-lived, but what feels ‘worthy’ and remains ‘worthy’ later in life. Specifically, researchers found three key factors:

  1. The extent to which people can pursue projects that matter to them.
  2. The ability to which you are able to use your skills and talents.
  3. Doing something that matters to others and has a long-lasting impact on others after our death.

We should focus on these 3 things that we NEED if we WANT evidence of a life well-lived. How? Start by doing your LIFE Timeline review and consider which segments of your life these three factors currently apply to. If it’s not clear, think of which segments you WANT them to apply to and start turning that into action.

If you struggle with impatience, find out how Clare can help you in her free help centre: https://www.clutterclearing.net/clares-help-centre/

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