I Can See Clearly Now

pan-xiaozhen-261728.jpg

 

Oh, September… 

Time to wash the sand and sunscreen out of your eyes and get ready for, among other things, pumpkin spice overload!  

While pumpkin spice isn’t really our thing, we do get its appeal. It seems to mimic the dichotomy of the season: settling into a familiar, cozy routine while embracing the desire to take on something new and challenging, and we're all for that! After a relatively relaxing summer, we're ecstatic to be back in full swing and have lots of new projects in the works.

We see it often—more so now than at the start of the year—the excitement with which people gear up for the "Back to School" season: chunky sweaters, crisp bike rides, rosy cheeks, and fresh notebooks promising new perspectives.
 

“The more of me I be, 
the clearer I can see” 

–Rachel Archelaus
 

Now that Autumn is upon us, we wonder what it is that you would like to bring into your life—today and throughout the year.  We’ll let you ponder that for a bit, recommending you keep it simple and clear. And while you’re trying to figure it out, remember that we’re always here to help.
 

Want some more food for thought and inspiration?

We're pleased to share our latest Assk the Asskickers Q&A.  And by the way, we love receiving your questions, so keep 'em coming!

 

ASSK THE ASSKICKERS

Your tough questions addressed

A monthly column offering insights, compassion, some useful tools for self-empowerment—and a bit of humor. 

ac3766f5-d016-4acd-bb8e-6ea4babb2fc1.jpg

 

Q. There are so many things I want to do this fall!  Take an acting class, join Weight Watchers, cut down on FaceBook, and the list goes on. How do I stay focused on these things and where do I start?

—Mike C., Greenwich, CT

 
Dear Multifaceted Mike,

Great question and we love your enthusiasm!

For many people, September and the advent of fall feel like a blank slate—a perfect time to take up something new. I would bet, too, that many of those same people find that the excitement wanes (and resentment waxes) as work and other obligations take center stage and time is limited.

As with any change (or anything new) we introduce into our lives, we often have to make adjustments: physical, emotional, financial, even spatial. So how do you maintain your enthusiasm and set yourself up for a successful, exciting, enlightening fall season? 

Regarding the many things you want to do: 

Start by writing them down—don’t censor yourself, have fun. Then, next to each item, write the reason why you want to do it. Next: using a scale of 1 to 10, go through your list and decide how important each item is to you. Finally, what are the logistics and what does each one of these items or activities entail?  Do you have to put money aside, carve out some time, shift long-established habits? Do the research, get the information. 

Pick the one thing that is tugging at your heartstrings and schedule it—physically put it on your calendar. Then set the intention to show up and enjoy! Once this is part of your routine, pick the next item on your list—lather, rinse and repeat.

Still struggling?  Hop over to our Upcoming Workshops and sign up for The Things You Say You Want To Do.

See you on the Great White Way,
Dianne


 
Q. Why can't we be those people that always have their homes neat and organized? Why do we always need to clean / put stuff away for 1-2 hours every time friends come over or the cleaning lady is scheduled? What simple and easy steps could we do to have our home be neat and tidy?

—Susie O.,  Harlem, NY


Dear Sucio No Mas,

We hear your frustration. Many of us, especially New Yorkers or city dwellers, have a hard time accommodating all our possessions. Everyone’s tolerance for clutter is different. Try not to compare your home organization or aesthetic to others.Your place just might offer a cozy respite to those minimalist friends who invited you over for that sushi dinner last month.  

Researchers have found that certain people need a bit of a mess in their surroundings to feel inspired and get work done. Seek to create spaces that make you feel at ease. That being said, clutter often comes down to our ducking decisions or simply refusing to make them.  In what ways might this apply to you?
Does the clutter offer a form of protection?  For example, is it an excuse to not invite your family over (or that cute neighbor down the hall)?

Before getting rid of that stack of cartons in the middle of your living room and tackling that pile of dust bunnies, consider this:

How is clutter interfering in your life? What might improve in your life if you were to get a handle on it. 

Physical clutter (and the accompanying feelings around it) competes for your attention, resulting in decreased performance and increased stress.

Here are a few painless steps to help you get some more zen in your den:

Try creating a pocket of order. 
The key is to start small: Tackle one room—or even one bookshelf—at a time. 

Sometimes it's as simple as designating a place for each item, especially when space is at a premium.

Contemplate each item and ask yourself how it serves you. If it no longer does, get rid of it. For those things you still love but no longer have a use for, consider passing them on to others so that they can enjoy them as you once did.

Schedule clutter maintenance (get that calendar out again!).  It’s amazing what a difference only 5 minutes a day can make!

Often when our clients begin to see improvement in one area of their lives, they begin to take action in others (i.e. relationships, weight control, finding a better job, etc.).

Get ready for all the other perks your clutter-free life will attract!!

De nada,
Robert