I love to get rid of junk and clutter.

I love the feeling of cleaning out a closet and saying goodbye to the things I didn’t even know I had, or cleaning out my pantry and then discovering, “Oh hey, I didn’t need the two-pack of ranch dressing from Costco because Oh look, there’s two more up there on the top shelf!”

Another way that I love to declutter my life might surprise you because it doesn’t involve any cleaning supplies or a trip to the thrift store.

I want you to picture a giant book shelf. Let’s say it’s in my basement and it’s full from top to bottom with the biggest thickest manuals.

These manuals seem so necessary and impossible to part with.

I have quite the collection too… one for each person in my life.

I have written in them my rules, my expectations, my desires, my hopes, my frustrations and all my contentions.

These manuals dictate how I will show up and behave in just about every circumstance because my brain is really good at being prepared with all the possible scenarios.

These manuals are the instructions I have for others to follow. If followed I get to feel good and be happy.

If not followed, I go to the shelf and find the manual I have there for myself.

This one is very well used and even larger than the rest. This manual tells me how I will react when someone doesn’t follow my manual.

My giant shelves full of manuals take up so much space, they are dusty and dirty, and let’s get real here….. when used they rarely ever “Spark Joy” for me.

For sure there are sparks involved, but certainly not the good kind!!

My first step in decluttering my basement full of manuals is just to notice that they are actually there.

I take some time and dust them off. I read some of the pages and decide if I like the stories that are written in them.

Being the author means that If I don’t like the way my stories turn out, I have the choice to rewrite them and change the endings next time.

Take some time to evaluate your shelf of manuals and the many pages within.

Pick just one, dust it off and evaluate.

  • Friends should pay attention to my likes and dislikes
  • Husband must say he loves me everyday
  • Children should do what I ask the first time every-time
  • Good friends call each other back or return texts right away

Evaluating your manuals and then deleting the parts that aren’t working in your favor is a crazy amazing way to declutter your brain, your relationships and ultimately your entire life!

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