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Lost in the chaos? How to get structure in your life again

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Lost in the chaos? How to get structure in your life again

Have you lost yourself in the chaos? Why is it that at the beginning of the year we always feel so driven inside to turn everything upside down? The lines at the recycling center stretch all the way to Saint Neverland. Everywhere you look, you see overzealous people cleaning windows in drafty January. And at the popular Swedish furniture store, the sorting boxes just go out of stock. Oops. Spring cleaning. What a phenomenon! On the internet you can even find ingenious 7-step plans for making a big clean.

Goodbye chaos: Give yourself and your home a new look

Do you also love to make tabula rasa everywhere? Clean every speck of dust out of every closet? Sprucing up your wardrobe, giving yourself and your home a new look? Or do you feel lost in the chaos, your doorbell now says "At Hempel's under the sofa". And you have no idea how to get out of here without breaking a leg? Great! Then we'll give you the Tidy Up Package, including an interior and exterior treatment.

Chaos? Reflect on your life honestly

What's going on in your life? Is everything going the way you want it to? Please answer this question honestly for yourself. "If you feel a 'no', then we would like to encourage you to take a look. First, observe what problem or situation is underlying your 'no,'" recommends coach Christina Grahn-Hommelsheim. Together with her husband Walter, she wrote the book "Heart over Head - the simple formula for a happy life", which has just been published. They advise you to ask yourself the following questions:

  • What's going on?
  • How did that happen?
  • What's not going right?
  • Does anything feel wrong?
  • Pick up signals

First of all, look at the situation or the problem soberly and objectively. Without analyzing or interpreting. Just describe for yourself what is. "In the second step, we go further and see what comes to light on an interpretive level," explains Coach Walter. "And no, we don't start blaming others or the outside world for the problem. Because instead of blaming others or life, just like with body symptoms, you can just notice the signals first."

What's triggering you?

Then you look at what exactly is happening inside you. Because the situations that you react to very strongly - that trigger you, so to speak - are kind of waving a fence post at you. There's a flag in there that says, "Hello, this is your chance to dig deeper into the issue behind this." Don't judge yourself for maybe being in "couch potato" mode for far too long. Gratitude is the key to inner tidiness. Be grateful that the realization is showing up right here, right now. These patterns and habits have served you for something for a long time. Now, let's get to work on that spade!

You have a stake in what happens in your life...

Let's not fool ourselves: The emanation of our subconscious draws the appropriate things into our lives. If we are frustrated, we only attract more frustrating experiences into our lives. If we are happy, many beautiful things happen all by themselves. We have a significant share in what happens in our lives. Therefore: Take a conscious look around you. Because your home also reflects your soul.

Order makes happy, chaos does not!

The Japanese Marie Kondo has dedicated her life to order. Her book "Magic Cleaning" became a bestseller that has been translated into around a dozen languages. The KonMari method is also known in German-speaking countries as "Magic Cleaning" and is for its followers the gospel of tidying up par excellence. The recipe behind it: Tidiness makes you happy, according to the Japanese proverb "The disorder in the room corresponds to the disorder in the heart."

Change of perspective: away from chaos

The success of this method lies in its holistic approach. Because parting with things is an emotional matter: nostalgia, memories and diffuse fears play an essential role in letting go of the old and making room for the new. But for long-term success and to have fun with it, it's only logical to include this level when decluttering. Marie Kondo's firm thesis: Two thirds of the things in a household or at the workplace can be disposed of. Only what "gives pleasure" is kept. This sounds strange at first, but this positive approach releases energy and reveals things that many collectors and messies never thought possible. Marie Kondo's 6 steps for more order are:

1. speed and consistency:

Creating order is a special event for the Japanese, not a constant process. Take a category and set yourself deadlines. For example, half an hour for the category "socks" or "pens" and the topic is done.

2. sort by category, not by location

"Today the bathroom, tomorrow the hallway" or "First the one pile, then the shelf" are the wrong approaches, because tidying up according to this principle will never end, according to Kondo. The organizational consultant also recommends following this order: Clothes, books, papers, odds and ends, mementos. Clothes come easiest to most people, and you train yourself to say goodbye. Mementos are the hardest for most people to sort out, these come last.

3. touch!

Now it's step by step: take a thing in your hand, touch it, look at it. Here you can switch off the brain. Marie Kondo advises to pay attention to the body feeling. How does the object make me feel? Does it pull me down, do I get tense, or does every part of my body say "yes"? Do you love the object?

4. does it bring joy?

The decluttering expert turns the tables: it's not about racking your brains about what to get rid of, it's important to be clear about what you want to keep.

5. chaos is unnecessary! Every thing has its place

Yes, even books are allowed to be thrown away. If that's too radical for you, you can still donate functional items or sell them online. The things that bring joy or are simply necessary for everyday life are kept in one place.

6. an altar for memories

Here comes possibly a little bit the Shintoismus influence of Marie Kondo to bear: the tidying-up expert thinks it's important to respect belongings and show gratitude to them when you say goodbye, which helps to detach. Like this: "Thank you dear trend, you were interesting, I have read you, you have done your services, now you can go to the waste paper". Of course, this is more difficult with mementos such as photos, postcards, gingerbread and the like. 

Less is more

If you follow the KonMari method, you not only create order and space for new things. Messy people become minimalists and the great thing is that you don't miss anything. Those who keep in mind for future purchases the approach "Does it bring joy, does it inspire me?" will become aware of their own lifestyle and style. Many things no longer even come into the house and accumulate. In other areas of life, this mindset also leads to saying "yes" more consciously to important things and rejecting many things that don't bring joy. We are excited to see what comes out of your analysis and look forward to reading about your experiences!

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Reviewed by Dr. med. Stefan Frädrich

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