Decluttering your life may also mean decluttering relationships

I have been on a “decluttering” tear lately, watching videos about getting rid of junk, finding “freedom” from it, etc. I’ve been donating huge amounts of stuff to charity, giving specific things to friends, etc. It feels good. 

Beyond just streamlining my closets, I’ve streamlined my life. I do so much less than I used to do ten years ago. Call me lazy, but moderating debates, making appearances in person or on Cable TV, other special events, etc. is no longer a huge part of my life. It was for many years, but no longer. There are so many other and more efficient ways to reach my audience without having to be everywhere all the time. You wind up being useless to everyone. 

I realize that a person can only do so much, and for me, because of the crazy sleep pattern morning drive dictates, I find that doing my show, prepping for my show, walking my dogs, trying to sneak in a workout and reading my Bible is about all I care to juggle these days. 

Everyone walks around “exhausted” lately, as if that’s some badge of honor. Seems to me you need to say no once in a while, and just relax. I no longer feel the need to be at every opening. I rarely do TV stuff. It’s freeing. I did a Skype interview today, but I never had to leave home. Technology is your friend, in that case (if you can get the lighting right). 

Another thing I have scaled back since I’ve been decluttering is in the area of relationships. I realized I had a few that were dragging me down. You may find that, too, if you’re honest in your evaluation. Sometimes relationships become habit. You’ve been friends for so long that it’s just a habit to keep in constant touch. It’s time consuming and often not very edifying, if you’re just having the same conversations over and over again. 

Sometimes taking a break from someone for a minute makes you realize you really don’t miss them all that much. It’s not that you stop caring about them, it’s just that your life and priorities have changed, as have theirs, and there’s no point anymore. You still love them, but you’ve moved on.  

For example, if you find yourself having the same conversation with a person over and over again who refuses to make changes, but wants to bend your ear about it again and again, that’s a waste of time. That was fine when I was 16, but now I have things to DO. 

I’d rather listen to an inspirational podcast than get on the phone and gossip, or hear someone whine about something they refuse to change. 

My world is getting smaller, and I like it that way. I can’t be everything to everyone, and I’ve stopped trying. I have a select group of people I am available to, and that pretty much covers it. Other than my job, my family, my church family, and a few close friends is all I have time for. 

When you’re decluttering your life and looking at what you don’t need, consider the relationships in your life. They may be taking up more useable space than your shot glass collection. 

Heidi Harris

6-25-19

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