Occasionally your life can become so busy that you can’t find time to do the things that are really important to you. When that happens, you know you need to de-clutter your time.

Something Has to Give

I was reminded of this over the past two weeks, when I’ve been unable to write this clutter blog. Two of my children were taking important exams, which for the elder would determine whether she was offered a place at the university of her choice. It was a very stressful time for them, as well as for the whole family. Whilst supporting my children, continuing to work at my business to earn a living and running the household, something had to give… and it was my clutter blog.

I don’t love housework more than my clutter blog. But I do love the people who live in my house, so for their sake I had to prioritise the smooth running of it during this stressful period. To make matters worse our boiler broke down, so that we had no hot water, and our telephone line developed a fault, which meant we were unable to use it for telephone calls!

Our Busy Lives

Now that this troublesome period in my life is over, I’ve had time to reflect upon what happens when our lives become too busy. Sometimes we take on more activities than we can cope with. We do this to please other people, out of a sense of guilt, or because we under-estimate the time needed to carry them out. Often we under-estimate the knock-on effects on the rest of our lives.

Tired, Irritable and Impatient

Physical clutter makes us stressed, but activity clutter can be just as bad for us. If we pack too many activities into our day, then we have no time to relax, reflect, or re-charge our batteries. If we don’t make the time to unwind naturally, then we may be tempted to turn to alcohol or other drugs to help us relax quickly.

We become tired, irritable and impatient. We don’t have time to eat a healthy diet, exercise, or keep our households running smoothly. We don’t have time to be aware of the people around us and how they might be feeling. Ultimately, we will feel as if we cannot cope, and then something will have to give.

Take a Step Back

If you’ve got to the point in your life where you feel jaded, worn out and stressed, then step back and take a look at your activities and commitments. Is there something you can stop doing? Can you delegate a task to someone else? Can you buy help for your housework, your gardening, or your DIY?

A Rabbit Dilemma

I had a dilemma recently when a relative of mine had a pet rabbit which she was unable to take care of any longer. She decided that she needed to find a new home for it and asked me if I wanted to take it. I nearly said yes, because I love animals and I felt sorry that she had to lose her pet.

But then I thought again. I already have three children, three guinea pigs, three businesses and a household to take care of. Can I cope with a rabbit as well? I realised that I couldn’t. If I took on too much then my existing commitments would suffer and that wouldn’t be fair on them or me. So I reluctantly said no. Afterwards I knew that I had made the right decision because I felt an enormous sense of relief.

Give Yourself a Gift

If you take on too much, then not only you, but everyone around you suffers. Your time is important; time to unwind, time to be yourself, time to spend with your loved ones. If your life is too cluttered then take the time to de-clutter it, and give yourself back the gift of time. Because in our busy lives, time is becoming the most precious commodity of all.