Let’s talk about the really big aha moment that I had. back when I originally talked to Marla Cilley (also know as the Flylady).
Ten to 15 years ago when I was looking for different ways of approaching cleaning my house. And that’s what Flylady is all (about on the surface): zone cleaning.
She breaks your house up into different zones and then you spend 15 minutes a day cleaning, not bad. Of course, as with many things in this life, there is that structural component that helps you do something that has a real life implication. And then there’s also the piece that’s psychological that sits behind that, which is of course why were you dragging your feet on cleaning your house in the first place, or what makes it hard for you to declutter in the first place.
Marla starts to get into the psychology of it, which is a really interesting perspective. The thing that I love so much about what she said in this last interview was we started to talk about the Marie Kondo method of decluttering and cleaning out your closet.
The thing that Marla said that stood out to me was this: She talked about how Marie Kondo recommends that you take everything out of your closet and put it on your bed and then go through all of it. And Marla said, “Oh no, that would never work for the people in my program, because they would immediately get so overwhelmed that they would stop dead in their tracks and not move any further. “
Here’s the inspiration for this week’s aha moment: Flylady Marla fully understood what people in her program are capable of doing, and she embraced it. Her intention is to make it things doable for the person that is doing them.
While Marie Kondo’s method is beautiful and aspirational and amazing, it may not fit into your life.
It’s important to “right size” the thing that you are doing and the thing that you want to achieve to fit your life so that you feel great about doing it.
You need to right size the way that you approach something, so that it fits your life. The intention is to mindfully look at that thing that you want to change, and decide how you want to make that change. So even though the idea in Marie condo’s book of holding each thing in your hand and deciding for sparks, joy might be really the thing that you want to tackle (and you do want to clean your closet), you might also KNOW that you’re going to get overwhelmed when you pull everything out.
Instead, set the intention to complete the task, but to do it in a way that fits for you. If I wanted to do this, I might decide I’m going to look at five things a day. Look at each one, decide if it sparks joy and put the ones that don’t into a donation pile.
The action for you this week is to make a plan. So take the thing that you want to do, and then make a plan around it using baby steps that let you accomplish the thing in the way that works for you in your life.
Notice where you might feel that overwhelm is coming up and find another way to do it.
“Don’t throw the baby out with the bath water,” as Marla says. Make it fit for you and your life.