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You are all in for a treat today. I went to school with June Harper Mathews.  She is a kind, cheerful and very funny lady who has graciously agreed to do a guest post for me today.  (She is a very talented freelance writer.) What a fabulous way to start the new year. I wholeheartedly agree with her topic and will start by de-cluttering my blog of too many words… Enjoy hers.

In a Word: Declutter

I don’t make very many New Year’s resolutions, and whenever I do, they usually fall by the wayside fairly quickly. I make the supreme effort to keep them the first half of January, but after that, all bets are off. By February, I’ve either forgotten them, or I’ve consciously decided they’re no longer worth the trouble. For me, using resolutions to make appreciable life changes just doesn’t work.

But when a Facebook friend recently shared the concept of choosing an annual “theme word” as a yearly guide, the idea of doing the same appealed to me. Remembering one word as opposed to a list of resolutions was something even this memory-challenged, middle-aged chick could manage, and focusing on a single overarching theme for the year seemed so simple, yet it presented all kinds of possibilities.  I was sold.

And I immediately knew my theme word should be DECLUTTER.

You see, I’ve lately been toying with the idea of backing a dump truck up to the front door and emptying the house of all the stuff Jimmie and I have accumulated during the past three-and-a-half decades of marriage and starting all over again. Oh, not really, of course. For one thing, I couldn’t afford to replace the furniture. But I’ve lately realized how all the clutter in my life has become a serious impediment to my overall happiness and productivity.

A cluttered mind has caused me to forget appointments and other commitments.

A cluttered schedule has caused me confuse priorities, often choosing to overburden myself with too many volunteer commitments as opposed to spending quality time on family relationships and spiritual pursuits.

A cluttered home (also my workplace) has caused me to lose track of things, which often costs me time, money and/or peace of mind.

Decluttering the Junk Drawer
Decluttering the Junk Drawer

The clutter I’ve allowed to permeate my life has caused stress, anxiety, confusion, depression, feelings of ineptness and lack of control, and a host of other negative emotions, not to mention the toll my issues are taking on those around me.

It’s now past time to do something about it, and adopting “declutter” as my mantra for the coming year is, I believe, a sensible start. I know cutting the clutter is going to be a long process (easily a year; maybe more), and I know that maintaining the good it can do will mean developing new habits.

And no, I don’t have a structured plan; that’s not my style. It’s my hope that as I incorporate thoughts of decluttering into my everyday consciousness and habitually rid myself of bits of clutter along the way, I’ll develop a less cluttered mindset that will naturally spill over into all areas of my life.

So we’ll see.

In the meantime, I have the comfort of knowing that if all else fails my “backup” plan is within easy reach. There’s a dump truck parking lot down the road, and I’ve had my eye on a big blue-cabbed model for quite some time. I’m betting that for the right price, I could be clutter-free within a day.

Now if I can just figure out where the money for all that new furniture is going to come from…

June Mathews is a freelance writer who lives and works in Trussville, Alabama. She is thrilled to be guest-blogging for Cozinest. 

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