A new book The Life Changing Magic of Tidying Up provides excellent advice on how to live more a comprehensive yoga lifestyle and declutter your life.
If you believe yoga is a lifestyle, than you try to incorporate the practice and philosophy into your everyday life. So what does that mean about how we clean like a yogi and stay organized? This seems to be an overlooked aspect of how to live more like a yogi throughout your day. Using the guidance of an amazing book called The Life-Changing magic of Tidying Up by Mari Condo, I’ve been creating a philosophy and lifestyle for organizing cleaning like a yogi that helps me live my yoga lifestyle.
The magic of tidying up and getting rid of the clutter in your physical life is a great metaphor for living like a yogi. We meditate and practice yoga to clear our spiritual and mental lives. Yet, we come home or go to our work and are surrounded by overwhelming clutter. We don’t realize it, but this is a constant stress on us, pushing us out of balance. So over the past 4 weeks, I’ve been targeting one aspect of my life and decluttering. I won’t go into the details of the book because you should just read it, but rather I wanted to give you some encouragement to evaluate the organization of your stuff.
First, consider that if something does not serve you or offer you some benefit, than just get rid of it. We think that we should have certain things in our life like certain styles of clothes, books, exercise equipment, pictures of old friends etc. But in reality, there is no should for keeping around possessions like these. By keeping them around but never using them, they simple end up acting as a little reminder that we aren’t doing what we think we should be doing. And that’s weighing you down. So evaluate whether or not something serves you and make a decision to use it, cherish it, benefit from it, or get rid of it.
Next, ask yourself if your possessions are preventing you from experiencing change. We keep tokens of important events in our life for the purpose of reminding ourselves who we were at a different time. But after a while, those tokens begin to anchor us so heavily in our former selves. Sure, we should be proud of who we were and what we accomplished and where we came from. But so many of those reminders prevent us from realizing that there is so much more to accomplish in life. If something hanging on a wall, placed on a shelf or somewhere else on display make you think to the future, but rather brings you into the past, it’s probably time to let it go.
And last, try not to think of empty space as boring, plain or unfulfilling. In yoga we are constantly trying to get to a sense of mindful inwardness. We don’t need to add to the distractions that are constantly trying to pull us away from center. Remember that coming to your drishti is looking for something still and simple to help you find balance. Remember that ujjayi breath is about creating space so we can get deeper into our practice. Whether it’s an empty closet or blank space on the wall, empty spaces are just as important as the physical things on our life.
If these all sound like things you could use in your life, start by reading The Life Changing Magic of Tidying Up. It will give you a fantastic new way to developing a more yogic lifestyle.