When you're in the early months or years after Separation or Divorce – decluttering and minimizing your life is a must! Your life depends on it.
When my ex and I had first separated several years ago, I remember feeling completely overwhelmed by the way my family life had changed in such a short period of time. I had never lived on my own before, and while I’d call myself very independent, it was amazing to me how much I had to learn or relearn to completely run a household on my own. Not to mention the mountains of emotional baggage I needed to sort through at some point.
At my most overwhelmed, I remember making a mental list - while I lay on my bedroom floor - of all the things I HAD to do to keep my life running. The bare minimum. Just the things required to ensure that what was left of my life wouldn't implode. I had to work. I had to feed the kids. I had to do whatever was required to ensure the kids were adjusting well to living in two houses. I had to eat and sleep. And that’s it. Just the essentials.
I put all my household bills on auto-pay so I wouldn’t have to bother remembering when to pay a bill. I just couldn’t keep those dates in my head, no matter how hard I tried.
So, I committed to doing the basics. With the faith that doing only the basics would give me time to put myself back together. Somehow. The path would appear. I hoped.
I operated in this simple way of living for months and months, if not over a year!
And then one day, I looked back and I realized that minimizing my life was actually a gift, among all the change and chaos. It was as though I had made a clean break from my old life. As painful as that was, it was necessary. I was initially saying no to things out of pure survival mode.
However, as I began to live my life more fully, I was more protective with my time and space. I would only invite people/activities back into my life that I really treasured and loved and enjoyed. Only things that I had missed doing or people I had missed connecting with when I was in survival mode.
The rest just naturally fell away. All the clutter. All the excess. All the buzz and distractions of life. All the shoulds. They naturally fell away.
And as I got stronger and more able to live a life of more width. I got more confident in myself and my ability to trust my instincts. I was emboldened to say no to invitations, if it felt more like an obligation than something I’d enjoy. I could choose what I put back into my life!
Relatively unintentionally, I was creating a life I love, with people I love. And I was more hopeful for the future than I had been in years. And excited for what adventures life has in store!
Going through a Separation/Divorce is truly a re-birth. Holy smokes it's a real slog. But overall, the personal growth can be impressive if you commit to yourself to doing the hard emotional work.
Now I invite you to give yourself permission to re-discover yourself - to explore and re-connect with things and people that give you joy. And to de-clutter things from your life: physically, mentally, and emotionally.
And one day I hope you'll look back and realize that you’ve come home to yourself. That your inner self and your outer self are aligning. Welcome Home :) And now, you can just be yourself in the world. No masks. No posturing. Just you being you. What a relief.
Now that’s freedom. Enjoy!
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Together we can positively change the way families are affected by Separation & Divorce! :)