Doing less … and cleaning out the clutter



Did you slow down and do less as I was suggesting to yoga students before Christmas? Were you able to do this?

What I found (after a period of rest and holiday) was that I wanted to clean out clutter.

I don’t know about you, but when I’m in my usual routine of work (teaching yoga and running a yoga studio) there’s not much time for tackling some of those big clutter jobs. And we’ve been in this house for 12 years now so it has definitely built up.
So it was really nice to have time to tackle de-cluttering the house in a take-your-time, non-frantic way. So far the fridge and wardrobe are looking fantastic. Clothes have been distributed to the op-shop, or rubbish bin or become cleaning rags.
I’m not a big shopper but still there was a stack to remove. It makes me realize how much stuff we collect and I hope this informs my future shopping.
A friend of mine asks a question ‘Will it fit in the caravan?’ when she goes shopping. She says would be happy to live the simple life in a caravan, and if whatever she is looking at doesn’t have a place there, then perhaps she doesn’t need it after all.
Somehow cleaning out the physical clutter has supported a feeling of easing into inner spaciousness as well.  
Perhaps there is less mental chat pulling me in different directions … ‘I should be doing … housework, deskwork, tending the vegetable garden, on it goes …’ when the space around is more zen-like?
Of course there are things to do, the phone is ringing, people are making enquiries and booking into classes, for example. But when my physical space is clear it seems to create more room for inner spaciousness.
Oh yes I can meditate when it is a bit messy around, after all, when I close my eyes I can’t see it anyway. But I find it is easier to be free within when the space around is clear. As I said, it feels more spacious.
And things are coming to me, priorities are becoming clear. It feels good. This is the access to inner wisdom that I referred to in my New Year blog.
I feel able to focus on the here and now. It feels like I can see with fresh eyes.
This is the true practice of mindfulness. Informed by past experience, but also bringing openness and freshness to each moment.

The great sage Patanjali recommended practicing Sauca, cleanliness and purity, as a practice (one of the Niyamas) to help towards experiencing a state of Yoga, or union. This can be explored in many ways, both as a mind state of purity, and cleanliness of physical surroundings. I’m pretty sure he was on to something! What do you think?
PS. I’m no expert in de-cluttering, still got a lot to learn. The quote on the blackboard above came from someone who is, Denise at http://www.systemsfororder.com.au/