Recently I had lunch with a friend who is an image consultant and she was telling me how one of the services she provides her clients is a Closet Audit. In a nutshell, a closet audit is when she helps a client really look at her closet contents and decide what to keep and what to get rid of. They completely empty the closet and then go through each item to decide what will go back in. Does it fit, is it nice, does it compliment who she is…etc. As we sat at lunch talking, I kept coming back to this idea. Hmmm, I’ve read about doing this many times before, and I AM pretty good at going through my things regularly and getting rid of what no longer fits me etc… but to take EVERYTHING out and really decide what stays and goes??? Intriguing!
That got me thinking, you’ve heard me say it before, your closet has a direct correlation to your subconscious…You know what… I AM READY.. I am ready to purge. get rid of all that is in there that no longer has a right to be in there. Lately, I feel like my life is getting a little cluttered and one quick way for me to feel back in control is by getting 2 of my most used spaces in order. So you know what, I am going to not only AUDIT my closet, but I am also going to AUDIT.. wait for it… wait for it… My PANTRY!!!!
How about that for ambition. I am going to kick start my spring cleaning this week with these two huge purges.. I am going to truly audit and be aggressive. Once it’s out, it better be darn good before I allow it back in. Can you imagine doing that on more than just your closet? Really intentionally deciding what should fit into your life?
Fast Forward 2 Weeks…
I did it! After a really super busy week of working overtime, I told my boss that I would not be in on Tuesday & Wednesday. I needed a couple of days to regroup and relax. Relax? ugh, I don’t think so :)… First thing I did Tuesday morning was start taking everything out of my pantry. I hadn’t even finished the kids breakfasts and things were flying around like crazy. I tried to take a couple of photos to document my experience. So what did I learn? Surprisingly, I came up with a few observations.
1. OVERSTOCK!!! How do we always end up with so much? I mean seriously…how many containers of oats should a girl have? or bread crumbs? When we don’t take stock of what we have, we don’t know what we use…we don’t realize we already have all that we need. When people ask what it is I do as a Life Coach, I say I specialize in helping people do 3 things – Organize, Prioritize and Simplify. I used these principals in my Pantry excursion. I realized I could save money be using what I had and stop buying so many duplicates! My pantry was certainly overstocked…
2. OUTDATED!!!! How many items do we have that have run their time and have expired? I found spices in my pantry that expired in the late 90’s!!! Yikes… maybe that’s why my cooking isn’t the best???!!! ha When we try to use things that are outdated it not only affects the flavor, but many time the whole recipe is ruined. Do you still hold on to things that no longer have good flavor? Can you finally recycle and get rid of some of the things in your life that you no longer should be using?
3. OFF LIMITS!!! By restructuring the pantry I was able to put things that are “off” my food choice list in a special section. This has helped me with my choices when I open up the pantry door. Now my healthy snacks and good-for-me foods are on the shelf that is eye level, and the kids fruit snacks and granola bars are on the bottom shelf. It makes it easier for me to make good choices when I have the pantry intentionally organized. What is off-limits in your life that you still keep around? Time to purge!
Once I finished my pantry I felt invigorated and excited. I walked to the pantry many times throughout the day and opened the door and smiled. The scene was peaceful and pleasing. When we take time to truly clean out all that has seeped into our lives that no longer belongs there, it truly does have an energetic and life giving feel. Why do we allow so much chaos and clutter into our “soul pantry”? This season is the season of rebirth and celebration. Why not challenge yourself to truly take stock of what you are filled with…
Are there certain things that you are overstocked on because of lack of use – i.e. books to read, projects to finish, exercise clothes to wear… what have you put on the back shelves this winter that has been sitting there waiting for you to enjoy?
How about what is outdated in your life right now? What can you throw away? Maybe negative self talk, complaining, doubt, fear? Let’s put an expiration on these items and bring in fresh, new blooms! Positive self talk, healthy self care, laughter, love and more are waiting to bloom, but first you must get rid of the outdated, old weeds!
And finally, what is off limits? Where would your life be better if you didn’t “even go there?” Again, challenge yourself to take away the things in your life that tempt you to go off course… be intentional in choosing things that bring you life. Friends who make you laugh, projects that inspire you, movement that strengthens you.
Spring Cleaning… I LOVE IT!!
One last note. I did end up going into my closet and doing the audit there too. It didn’t seem as rewarding as my pantry, because, truth be told, I really do keep on top of what I “allow” into my bedroom closet. But none the less, I still filled up a couple of bags to donate and here’s a photo of the finished project. I hope I’ve inspired you to get going on your spaces.