New Year's Day is the perfect time to start clearing the clutter in your life. This year is especially perfect because it falls during the waning moon (for undoings) and near the beginning of the week (for fresh starts). Here the de-cluttering starts with Yule decorations and then snowballs into a frenzy of my dear spouse's favorite game "Trash or Treasure." As something of a packrat, this little game used to be hard for me. Seriously, there are levels to trash or treasure--that thingee still has most of it's pieces...it's a souvenir from that trip...remember when the kids vomited on it--I'll admit that I sometimes have trouble letting go. Even worse, I'll want to find a way to recycle the junk, often hanging on to things for years before I finally just throw them away.
But for some reason, on New Year's Day, it's easier.
Once the holiday clutter is safely put away (in an organized manner, one would hope), boxes come out and everyone finds old stuff to get rid of. Clothes, toys, kitchen supplies which never get used, these all go into "The Box." Every now and then I'll be the voice of reason (are you SURE you want to get rid of Fluffybear?) and maybe I do slow the process a bit, but by the end of the day we can usually clear out two or three boxes of junk somebody else will have use for, and a garbage bag of broken or irreparable things for the curb. To be honest, the boxes tend to sit by the front door for a week or more before I can lug them out to the donation center, and often some of the treasures in them find their way back into kids' rooms or wherever. Still, every little bit that does leave us makes the house feel lighter.
Emotional and spiritual clutter is harder to deal with. We all have our own personal demons, and simply cleaning the house isn't enough to exorcise them. It is a constant battle, but one which has to start somewhere. For me it starts with a list. Just writing things down and seeing them on paper seems to help me get a handle. When I have some quiet time, I'll light a candle (maybe white for balance, healing and changing attitudes), center myself and meditate on the list. What caused the problem? What can I do to fix it? If nothing, am I strong enough to just let it go? When I feel I'm done, I light the list and let it burn in a fire-proof dish. Maybe nothing gets solved here, but taking any action seems to make me feel better, thus unloading some of my emotional burden, but maybe keeping a little until I can find a place for it later.