When was the last time you gave your life a good clean sweep? And no, I don't just mean your closet. You see, generally we all know where we're going, what kind of life we'd like to have, and who we would like to associate ourselves with. But sometimes we meet obstacles and tend to get lost along the way. Why? Because we lack alignment.
Alignment is defined as a state of proper positioning. When all elements are aligned, things flow easily and we remain in sync with our direction, pattern, and plan. As positive psychologist Mihalyi Czikzsentmihalyi would call it, it is a state of psychic negentropy - a sort of order in consciousness that allows us to achieve better flow in our lives. He says that in order to achieve this state, we need to have full focus. The way I see it, in order to achieve better flow and focus, we need to be able to toss the 5 things in our lives that tend to waste our time, money, and effort. They are:
1. The need to fill in our days. We live in a world where everything is moving so incredibly fast that we're no longer used to waiting. When our days happen to have gaps, we have a compulsive need to fill them up. We need to stay busy, on our toes, alert, and excited. The busy-ness gives us a sense of "purpose" and we lose ourselves in tasks.
2. The need to see and be seen. I remember someone telling me that when she was fresh out of a long-term relationship, she needed to go to all the places where she could "see and be seen". She wouldn't have it any other way, because society needed to see that she was doing okay. How many of us are like this? Whether we're determined to be out and about or showing off our "perfect lives" on social media, this need to show the world something has eaten into the time that we could be spending re-aligning.
3. Allocating time to all the wrong people. Truthfully this is the toughest one to get rid off. Why? Because we hardly take the time to really reflect on the people who tend to fill in the gaps, the people who simply entertain us. It reflects poorly on us to have to admit that we've wasted our time on all the wrong elements. But we have to. We need to be able to reflect on the friendships that serve us well and those that don't. The people that we use to fill the void and those whose love language match our own. Who are the people in your life that occupy your time? What kind of energy do they bring to the table? Assess honestly and start releasing those who've wasted your time, money, and effort.
4. Obsessing over events that haven't even happened. The mind is tricky and it tends to steal us from really enjoying our lives and sticking to where we need to be. Sometimes obsessing over events that haven't even happened can paralyze us. Catching the mind and it's tendency to catastrophize events is important in taking out the trash in our lives. While some elements are external, we need to be brave enough to toss out the ones that come from within.
5. Replaying the past. As I've said, we need to start sifting through the elements within and learn to release these tendencies if we truly want to flow. Replaying the past is another way of paralyzing ourselves, unable to welcome new elements into the picture. What are some things that you keep replaying? And do you think it might be time to let them go?
Which ones do you think you need to toss out immediately? Which habits or people are you now ready to release? Take some time to reflect on your own life and give it the good clean sweep that it deserves.
All for the highest and best, with ease and grace.